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If you’re searching for an outside activity that has a little of everything, look no further than horseback riding near Nashville. It’s a great activity to do with your family or friends. You may go at your own speed or take a guided tour with someone who knows the area well. There are even a couple of options for horseback riding in some state parks!
If you’ve never been horseback riding before, don’t worry – there are several locations around Nashville where you may rent horses and learn how to ride them. So what are you waiting for?
Let’s find the best horseback riding adventures in Middle Tennessee!
Options for horseback riding near Nashville TN
Bring Your Own Horse (BYOH)
If you own your own horse, there are plenty of trails in the area that you can explore. Some of the popular ones include the ones maintained by Metro Nashville.
There are also several companies that offer guided tours if you don’t feel comfortable going enturing out on your own. They’ll take care of all the planning, so you can just sit back and enjoy the ride.
If you prefer to go out on your own:
- Percy Warner Park (9 miles of trails maintained by Metro Parks)
- Peeler Park (3 miles of trails maintained by Metro Parks)
- The Park at Harlinsdale Farm (they have an equestrian trail)
- Natchez Trace State Park (many, many horse trails in this state park and also backcountry camping and closer overnight stays)
- Laurel Hill Wildlife Management Area
- Cedars of Lebanon State Park
- Bowie Nature Park
Horseback Riding Experiences (Renting a Horse)
If you don’t own a horse, don’t worry: there are several locations that offer horse rentals for all skill levels, whether it’s your first time riding a horse or you’ve been riding your whole life. Most rental stables will also give you a brief riding lesson before letting you go on the trail if you’re new to horseback rides.
Many of these places offer child and adult riding lessons as well as things like parties, so there’s more than just riding.
Here are a few places to rent gentle horses near Nashville for your horseback riding adventure. Click the name of each farm or stable for additional information about each.
- Lake Meadow Farm – experience the only stable in the nation that doesn’t use metal bits or shoe their horses. This farm keeps their horses for decades and has rehabilitated many horses. It’s definitely one of our favorites. In addition to guided trail rides, they also offer pony parties, horse boarding, have horse actors for hire, offer weekend wheeled tours and private horseback riding lessons. There is an age restriction: riders must be at least 5 years old and weight less than 250 pounds.
- Natchez Trace Stables – located just three miles off the Natchez Trace Parkway, this family run stable provides guided trail rides, most of which are around 2 hours in length. They also have a 250 lb weight limit but do not list an age limit, so call if you have questions. They can also do group rides for things like birthday parties.
- Juro Stables – they offer leisure group trail rides for groups of 10 or less and also private customized rides for advanced and even expert riders. You can also take lessons here and the weight limit is around 200 pounds. They are located close to downtown Nashville in the suburb of Mt Juliet (to the East of the city).
- Cedars of Lebanon Riding Stables – They offer a shorter guided trail ride of around 45 minutes and nearly 2 miles, but it is considerably cheaper than a lot of the other rides, so if you are uncertain about riding this might be the best option for you since it isn’t nearly as long or as expensive. They also have a 7 mile guided trail for more advanced riders and can do birthday parties.
How to Choose the Right Horseback Riding Experience for You
Now that you know all the different options for trail riding near Nashville, how do you choose the right one for you? Here are a few things to keep in mind:
What is your experience level? If you’re a novice, begin with a guided tour or an activity where they provide horses.
How many folks are coming? If you’re going with a group, most lodges will require at least six people for a private group ride. Inquire about group rates at the individual stable.
What is your budget? Horseback riding can be pretty affordable, but if you’re renting horses it will obviously be more expensive than bringing your own, but there are a variety of choices here with all kinds of different rates.
What’s the weather like today? If it’s been raining a lot, the pathways will be mucky and slick, so wait until they’re dry. Always check trail conditions before going out.
What to wear when horseback riding
For those of you who are newer to riding, you might be wondering what to wear. Here are a few tips:
- Wear comfortable clothes that you don’t mind getting dirty. Jeans are okay! Long pants are recommended.
- Avoid loose fitting clothing or anything that might get caught on the saddle or horse.
- Wear closed toed shoes with a heel – NO FLIP FLOPS! Boots are usually preferred over tennis shoes.
- If you have long hair, tie it back so it doesn’t get tangled.
Other Tips for Horseback Riding
When you’re riding a horse, there are a few more things to bear in mind:
It’s a physical activity, therefore drink plenty of water before and after your ride. You might be a little sore afterward if you aren’t used to riding, it usually subsides after a few days. (This always happens to me because it’s so long between rides for us!)
If you’re renting a horse, be sure to listen to the instructions from your guide or rental company.
Don’t surprise the horse by approaching from behind or performing abrupt movements. Keep an eye on your surroundings and be careful not to startle them. Horses that are chosen for trail rides are friendly horses but can be startled.
Have fun and enjoy the experience! Horseback riding is a great way to see beautiful scenery and spend time with friends or family.
See also: Horseback Riding in the Smoky Mountains
Final Thoughts on Horseback Riding Near Nashville
Now that you know all about horseback riding near Nashville, it’s time to get out there and explore! There are several options for trail riding in the area whether you bring your own horse or hire one. Consider horseback riding for a birthday, date night or just a fun family adventure!
Dress properly, follow instructions, and most importantly, have fun!