Compliments from " 8 mad Brits!"
" We just had to write and say a huge thank you to you and the team for putting on an excellent itinerary, the content was full and interesting, and it far exceeded our expectations - the horses, the riding, the scenery, history, weather - all just fantastic. We are already talking about making a return trip!
Ishan, our ride leader, was friendly and attentive at all times and made sure we were all comfy with our horses and with the pace of the ride. The long canters were rhythmic and to die for; we will never forget riding in the waves and galloping on the beach and swimming with the horses - the sea was as warm as a bath!
The horses were fit and in excellent condition (keep up those round bottoms Thilo!), they were happy in their group and the grooms and support staff did a great job of keeping both horses and riders cool at every opportunity with a wash down, all with a cheerful and helpful attitude.
We all felt that we had effectively had three holidays in one - starting on the beach, then riding inland jungle, cantering alongside canals, and then zig zagging up into the tea plantations of the hill stations. A well thought out itinerary indeed!
The historic sites left us awe struck, especially Sigyria Rock, which was well worth the climb in the midday heat having completed four hours riding in the morning - mad dogs and englishmen - but wow what a view, very proud to have achieved this climb. We were especially honoured to be allowed into Nuwara Eliya Golf Club for
lunch, thank you Suranjit, - this was very special to our group - a step back in time and excellent, moorish chocolate biscuit pudding!
Our guide Ajith Fonseka was informative, friendly and fun in explaining the numerous sites we visited and the minibus crew were fun and accomodating to our needs (ladies changing in the back!)
So, a huge thank you to all the smiley team, we were very impressed with what Sri Lanka has to offer the horse rider, and will happily recommend your safari's to our fellow riders, keep up the good work and hope to
see you all again in the not too distant future.
The 8 Mad Brits,
March 2013, 8 night/9 Day itinerary - Kalpitya, Sigyria, Kandy, Nuwara Eliya"
Champa champa ...
Born in Tissamaharama during a warm November, Champa was a mere 10 days old when, on New Years’ Eve her Sindhi mother Saroj experienced the worst colic that we, at the Premadasa Riding School had ever handled. The foal had not been handled in any way until that day, and had to watch helpless whilst we attempted to save her dam.
The next evening Saroj was nearing the end of her tether and would not even attempt to stand up. The filly (Champa) adamantly refused to drink from the bottle and was now becoming dehydrated as well. It was a no win situation, when the mare had given up. Desperate to save at least one life, we decided to try a drastic course of action … to introduce Champa to Chandrika – a volatile gray mare that had a history of attacking any foal that was not hers, and over protective of her own.
She had just been separated from her six month colt and was still milking, and had been brought into that stable for a few days before shifting to a more permanent stable.
It was the most amazing thing … Saroj was incapacitated on the ground when Chandrika was brought to the stable area. We had two grooms holding Chandrika, in case she decided to attack the filly and another holding Champa to guide her to the mare.
I remember it like yesterday, Chandrika took a long good look at Saroj and then moved her leg to the side, to allow Champa to nurse. She didn’t even try to nip, kick or bite. She just relaxed and allowed Champa to nurse. The change in Saroj’s behavior was shocking to anyone that had seen written her off…
She began struggling and then lunged to her feet and called to her filly, obviously offended that she was nursing with another mare!
From that moment on, she fought more than any horse I know to stay alive. It was not an easy road for her, she got severe laminitis as a result of her colic and had numerous complications. She was transferred to Colombo but however sick she was, she never let any other mare feed her foal.
Eventually Champa trusted people enough to take the bottle, and she was possibly the first extremely adventurous foal we had – that didn’t know how to stay inside a closed stable, or respect the boundaries of any horse or person!
All the stable horses were tolerant of her since they knew her mother was unable to teach her any manners, even Tipu Sultan (resident stallion) who constantly put up with her undignified visits into his stable and attempts to finish his feed!
Saroj passed away six months after that disastrous colic and Champa was walking unrestrained, adopted by the entire stable of horses … when she finally remet Chandrika.
There was a massive uproar in the stable at 3am the day when Chandrika was shipped back into stable. I remember running a quick check through the stable, wondering why the horses were so quiet… so still now a human was walking amidst them. I was so happy to see Chandrika, after such a long time … but she was stubbornly standing in a corner of her stable, refusing to come forward – when I realized that she was preventing someone from running away! Champa was blocked by Chandrika’s massive body (innocently having walked into the stable to greet the newcomer!). Chandrika was violent to anyone that would come near her or her forcibly adopted daughter!!
Whereas Champa had an incompacitated mother for the first six months of her life, her next six months were governed by an adopted mother that was hell bent on ensuring no human or horse got near her new foal!!
It was a hilarious turnabout of Champa finally being taught some manners!
Champa grew up to be one of the most loved horses in our stable, taking after her father Enjoy. She was the first mount of so many children and unflappable when things were loud and rough and loved nothing better than to show everyone how stubborn she could get when she wanted! A favorite with differently abled children, Champa finally succumbed to kumri – a nervous system disorder which was diagnosed too late to treat.
First Marwari Foal in Sri Lanka!
Compliments from a rider!
We had the most amazing review from a rider that joined us this November! Thank you Lara!!
“It was an amazing tour! Not only the combination of riding and non-riding days but also the combination of the different locations depict a perfect mixture which gave us a good insight not only into the nature of completely different parts of Sri Lanka but also into the cultural heritage, religion and sights which cannot be experienced on horseback. So, besides experiencing nature together with the horse, we were also able to cover a broad variety of other activities such as a jeep safari in a national park, a boat trip, a tuk tuk ride, visits of spice and botanical gardens, diverse temples and other religious sights, museums, historical ruins, a monk school, a fascinating dance show… The programme was multifaceted and thanks to our fantastic driver and guides who were always on time and eager to give us a good understanding of Sri Lanka, unforgettable.
You could easily notice that our driver, our riding guide and all the grooms without exception did love their jobs and that for them the most important thing was to fulfill all our wishes and to give us the best holiday possible. I am very thankful that they shared their broad knowledge about Sri Lanka, its people, history and nature with us. It was great to see their close connection to the horses of which they took amazingly good care. On the same time they took such good care of us guests as well – perfect balance.
The so well-looked after horses were much fun to ride. They all had a very good character, were curious, intelligent, very responsive and full of energy. They all were in very good condition as well as the saddles and bridles.
The ways and paths which we were riding on were very well-chosen and passed by beautiful areas such as lakes, stunning beaches, temples, ruins in the middle of the jungle, authentic villages and a lot of other non-touristic places. I would not want to miss one single hour of riding! It was wonderful of the guys that they took a lot of pictures of our riding group which they burnt for us on a DVD afterwards – great memory.
For me, experiencing Sri Lanka this way was very special and I enjoyed every minute of it due to the great staff in the hotels, restaurants and of course our driver and the horse staff. We met so many lovely people, enjoyed the breath-taking sceneries, the always delicious food, all the sightseeing and of course the fantastic horses. Thank you all so much!”
Horse Riding Syllabus
PREMADASA RIDING SCHOOL
Beginner lessons x 10 lessons
To train a rider with no previous knowledge in horses/ ponies on how to approach, mount, dismount and ride a horse in basic gaits.
Stable management content
- - How to approach and behave around horses
- - Checking riding equipment for safety and fit
- - Saddling and unsaddling a horse
Horse riding content
- - Mounting & dismounting
- - Rising Trot
- - Sitting Trot
- - Turns in walk & trot
Riders looking to develop further in their riding following the initial 10 lessons, are usually classified as intermediate riders. Intermediate riders are able to sufficiently control their horse in the basic gaits and are progressing to more advanced movements.
Lesson structures for intermediate riders include the following:
- - - Canter
- - Negotiating trotting poles
- - Jumping through basic grids on increasing heights
- - Jumping a show jumping course/ obstacle course
- - Riding a dressage test
- - Mounted Games