If you want to get some riding in on your next trip to Punta del Este, head out to Haras Godiva in José Ignacio—the Montauk of Punta—a less developed, more natural region of the extended resort area, with wide open spaces and lovely beaches, and the ideal location for keeping horses. Set on 24 rural acres, the ranch and riding center was opened in 2005 by Carolin Mallmann—a young Austrian who happens to be a cousin of one of Argentina’s most famous chefs, Francis Mallmann, who himself has a restaurant and hotel in nearby Garzon. Growing up, Carolin spent many summer holidays in Uruguay and on her family’s estancia in the province of Cordoba, Argentina, and the horse lover founded Haras Godiva to live her passion, and to give others the chance to ride in a spectacular coastal setting. Her ranch provides group or private tuition for all levels using well-trained horses from its stable. Saddle up for excursions on rural countryside trails, on the lovely beaches of José Ignacio or, for something really memorable, take an evening ride to watch the moon rising over the sea, followed by drinks and a barbeque by a campfire. The riding program is run by Argentinian Leonardo Silbert, who has extensive guiding experience in Argentina and Patagonia; his daughter Carolina is a professional chef and serves up gourmet snacks in the little bar and lounge sponsored by Chivas. You can hang out there and mingle after riding, and then browse the riding shop’s equestrian gear. Other than stables for the horses, there’s no accommodation, but there are several fine boutique hotels in the area, such as Casa Suaya. NB: You must rent a car to get around everywhere in Punta.
www.harasgodiva.com | Phone: +598 0480 6112
Ruta 10 Km 184 | José Ignacio, Punta del Este/Maldonado Uruguay