As we’ve been traveling through Mexico with kids, we’ve been trying to experience as much of the country as we can. Besides the standard Mexico family holidays activities, we’ve been actively trying to step out of our comfort zone and try things that we’ve never done before. This week, I had a chance to do something that was new to me: horseback riding in Mexico!
One of my favorite things about travel is having opportunities to try new things. While we’ve been in Mexico, I’ve had a chance to participate in a traditional temezcal ceremony (indigenous sweat lodge cleansing ritual), watched a Lucha Libre match, and seen Monarch butterflies in migration.
So when the opportunity to go horseback riding in Mexico with a company called Turismo Alternativo en Guanajuato arose, of course I had to take it! And as a traveler who’s committed to sustainable travel, I loved having the opportunity to support a locally owned company.
This post was updated on September 5, 2021.
This post may contain affiliate links. That means I may receive a small commission if you click on the link and purchase something. But don’t worry, this will not result in any extra costs to you.
Experiencing the outdoors with Turismo Alternativo en Guanajuato
The city of Guanajuato is typically known for its cultural and historical sites. You can check out some ideas for things to do within the city in Moon’s San Miguel de Allende: With Guanajuato and Queretaro guide book. But the city also has plenty of outdoor activities to experience. Since Guanajuato is set in a canyon, the surrounding hills are a great place for exploring on foot, bicycle, horse, or even ATVs!
Raul Jaramilla, owner and director of Turismo Alternative en Guanajuato, wants to make Guanajuato more than just a cultural destination. An outdoor enthusiast, he works to actively promote outdoor tourism, both through his company and as a professor of tourism at the University of Guanajuato. Through Turismo Alternativo en Guanajuato, Raul is slowly making Guanajuato an outdoor destination!
Turismo Alternativo en Guanajuato has been offering outdoor activities for Mexican family holidays since 2012. They began with bicycle tours throughout the city of Guanajuato. Now the company offers rappelling and mountain climbing, hot air balloon tours, ATV tours, and horseback riding tours. Since we’re here in Mexico with kids, we chose an activity that was more on the kid friendly side. Although taking an ATV tour around Guanajuato City sounded exciting, we decided a more low key activity of horseback riding in Mexico was a better fit for our family.
Read more about our experiences in the city of Guanajuato here.
Horseback riding in Mexico
For our horseback riding in Mexico adventure, Turismo Alternativo en Guanajuato picked us up from our Airbnb, and took us to a hacienda just outside of Guanajuato. Cruz, our guide for the day, owns the beautiful 250 year old hacienda. He also owns the surrounding property where we would be touring. It was a gorgeous setting for the ride!
Our horses were already waiting for us when we arrived. One horse for was ready each member of the family. Other than my husband, this was the first time anyone in my family ever rode a horse on their own. I was a bit nervous about being able to handle a horse by myself. But I knew I was in capable hands.
Aside from being a guide, Cruz also trains horses on his property. Before our ride, Cruz gave us a tutorial on how to ride a horse. We spent about ten minutes slowly trotting around the yard of his hacienda. By the time we left for our tour, I felt confident that I could at least do the basics with my horse: stop, go, turn left, and turn right. For my daughter, he tied a rope to her horse, which he held the whole duration of the tour. And for my son, who was too young to ride his own horse, Cruz had my son ride with him.
Ready for a change? Take the first step to living a life of full time travel.
A gorgeous setting to experience horseback riding in Mexico
Our horseback riding tour led us through the hills of Guanajuato, through desert and rocky terrain. We passed by an old mine, and also an open field where sheep were grazing. There were beautiful views of the canyons, which was incredible to see on horseback. I felt so lucky to be able to experience this side of Mexico with kids. Our whole family thoroughly enjoyed the ride, and Cruz was an excellent guide.
Most families who take Mexico family holidays come to the country for the beaches. And if they do come to central Mexico, they come for the history. But there’s so much more to Mexico than just beaches and historical places.
We’re so glad that we had the opportunity to do horseback riding in Mexico with Turismo Alternativo en Guanajuato. This experience really showed us a side of Mexico that many tourists overlook: the outdoors!
Book your horseback riding tour with Turismo Alternativo en Guanajuato here: Mexican Equestrian Experience
Read more about how to use the outdoors to engage your kids in learning about the world.
Other tour offerings by Turismo Alternativo en Guanajuato
We just loved our experience horseback riding in Mexico! If you’re planning to be in Guanajuato, check out the tours that Turismo Alternativo en Guanajuato has to offer. Their horseback riding tours cost 2,000 pesos a person, and last approximately 4 and half hours. If that seems long for your family, you may be able to negotiate a shorter tour. Ours was about an hour and a half, and it was the perfect amount of time for us.
Other tour offerings by Turismo Alternativo en Guanajuato include ATV tours, ranging from 3,100 pesos to 4,700 pesos for two people on a 3-6 hour tour. If your kids are a bit older, their four and a half hour cycling tour is a fun option, and costs 1,400 pesos per person. For families with teens, try their four and a half hour hiking tour, which costs 600 pesos per person.
Book your tours with Turismo Alternativo en Guanajuato here:
ATVs through the mountains and city of Guanajuato
Rappelling in hills of Guanajuato
A horseback riding in Guanajuato experience to remember
We just loved our experience horseback riding in Mexico. It was the perfect way to spend an afternoon in Mexico!
Have you had a chance to go horseback riding in Mexico? Share your experiences in the comments!
Are you visiting Guanajuato as part of a bigger family travel adventure? Use my ebook, Hey Kids, Let’s Go Travel! as a resource for tools, advice, and action steps for planning your trip.
Disclosure: This is a sponsored post. I received a discount for my experience with Turismo Alternativo en Guanajuato. However, the opinions in this post are completely my own.
Need help thinking through how to budget for a family trip? My Travel Budget Worksheet is just the tool you need! Click here to receive your free copy by signing up for my newsletter.Want to connect with me on social media? Find me on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, and Twitter. And for those of you who are dedicated to traveling more responsibly, sustainably, and ethically, join over 200 like-minded families on my Facebook group, Responsible Family Travel.
It seems like horse riding would be the perfect way to explore this incredible landscape, it gives you the perfect pace to cover some distances but to take in the atmosphere too.
Absolutely! We were able to see so much more than if we were just hiking.
I enjoy doing tours with local cultural significance (and some adventure) and it does sound like Turismo Alternativo en Guanajuato has a wide selection. I think the cycling tour would be my choice but the hot air balloon ride is a close second.
I think if our kids were older, we would have gone with the cycling tour as well.
Mexico is one of our favorite destinations in the world. We’ve been there a couple of times already that it starts to feel like a second home. 🙂 But there is still so much more to discover! We would absolutely love this tour you did! Thanks for putting on our radar! Another reason for us to go back to the country we fell in love with 6 years ago.
It really is a great country to explore. So many amazing cities besides the typical tourist destinations!
I have to admit (despite being brought up on a farm in my childhood years) I wouldnt do horseback riding (or riding on any other animal) but tour companies cant please everybody and everyone is different. However I would love to check out this area but maybe on a different mode of transport, two wheels or two feet for me. Landscape does look pretty awesome.
Fortunately for you there are other types of tours that you can do with Turismo Alternativo en Guanajuato. 🙂 I admit, I’m a bit fearful of horses too.
I have never felt comfortable horseback riding. Having said that, I think horses are some of the most beautiful animals on earth. We will be in Mexico in 2 weeks so I might just try!
I’m also a bit afraid of horses. The tour company offers other tours, so you don’t have to ride horses if you don’t want to.
This seems like such a quintessentially Mexican thing to do while visiting. I am very afraid of horses – something about them having a mind of their own, but if I was braver I would definitely want to do this. Your pictures look so fun!
Absolutely! Fortunately, Turismo Alternativo en Guanajuato has plenty of other non-horseback riding activities.
This sounds like a great family activity! It sounds like they also have mild and well-trained horses to be able to accommodate children and inexperienced riders. Very good to know they’ll negotiate a shorter time, I would probably do that – 4 1/2 hours for new riders sounds like a long time!
Yup, the horses were so easy to ride, and the company was very accommodating to our family.
What an incredible experience!! I’ve never tried this 🙂
It was so much fun! I hope you get a chance to do it some day.
What a fabulous way to explore this region of Mexico. I rode a horse for my one and only time in Cozumel. 😉 Not a horse fan at all but I can see where this vacation would be a fun one for so many. Thanks for sharing!
Riding horses is definitely not for everyone. Even after an hour and a half of riding for me, my legs were so sore! I think it’ll be a once-in-a-while travel activity for me too.
I have only horse rode in Wales but I would love to go horseback riding again but in Mexico. This sounds and looks like so much fun. I am a big fan of local cultural tours too.
I bet horseback riding in Wales was fun! Yes, local tours are always the best way to experience a destination, in my opinion.
This is such a nice experience, something different from the usual tourist stuff one might see about Mexico! Actually, Mexico is high on our bucket list. We almost booked a flight for Mexico, Guatemala and Belize, but because of all the current political issues we’ve decided to wait a bit. When we go, we’d definitely want to check out Guanajuato and try out horseback riding. Kerstin had a horse when she was a kid, so she knows how to ride a horse. I only did it once in Camargue, France, so would love to do that again someday. Thanks for sharing this experience!
Totally! Mexico’s fairly safe for travelers right now, we’ve been here for the past month and half, and have not experienced anything negative.