7 Days The Best Horse Riding Holiday in Velika Plana, Croatia

Luxury Horse Riding Holiday in Croatia

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Linden Tree Retreat & Ranch is a luxury nature resort that offers the perfect equestrian vacation in Croatia. Situated within Velebit mountain, a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve, this authentic guest ranch is home to a unique horsemanship, bespoke attention to comfort, service, and sustenance. Away from crowds and worries, this transformative travel destination will give you a time to hear your own thoughts, change the way you see the world around you, and change the way you see yourself. The best things in life aren't things and at Linden Tree Retreat & Ranch, they know that moments are those that matter. Join this luxury adventure holiday and let the life-changing experience begin! Once you visit, you'll always come back.

Key Information

  • Rider Weight Limit: 100 kilograms
  • Horse Height Range: 14 - 16 hands
  • Horse Breed: Western pleasure horse

Highlights

  • All-level horse riding sessions
  • Approximate daily riding time: 2 hours
  • Use of Linden Tree's sure-footed horses
  • Riding at the heart of the wilderness within Velebit mountain
  • View of the stunning beauty of the Velebit Nature Park landscapes
  • Services of wranglers well-versed in natural horsemanship
  • 6 nights' accommodation
  • Breakfast

Skill level

  • Beginner
  • Intermediate
  • Advanced

Styles


5 days with activities in English
Spoken languages: English
The maximum participants in the group is 10
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Accommodation

Facilities

  • Horse riding
  • Hot tub / Jacuzzi
  • Swimming pool (outdoor)
  • Volleyball court
  • Bar
  • Dining area
  • Environmentally friendly
  • Garden
  • Meditation garden
  • Multilingual staff
  • Restaurant
  • Special menu request
  • Terrace
  • Yoga studio
  • Bicycle rental
  • Child care
  • Dry cleaning
  • Free parking
  • Free Wi-Fi
  • Ironing / ironing board
  • Laundry
  • Library
  • Meeting room
  • Parking lot
  • Tour assistance
  • Patio

Linden Tree Retreat & Ranch is an ideal place for adventurous travelers looking for something completely different - a laid-back environment with an authentic, intimate ambiance, truly your home away from home. The accommodations feature the best of ranch living with finely appointed amenities to help guests relax after a day of horse riding and other activities. Different types of accommodation facilities offered at the ranch include en-suite rooms, luxury lodges and suites, river tents and Native American tipis.

They all feature beds dressed with soft linens, private baths (river tents and tipis have detached bathrooms), porches and mountain views. With studio hall, saloon, the square, hot tub, swimming pool, archery range, horse riding arena, tack room, two creeks and a river, there’s plenty of indoor and outdoor space for guests to spread out comfortably. They design the facilities for fun and relaxation in order to create peaceful and relaxing atmosphere and allow you to have an unforgettable vacation.

Buffalo Lodge

Built in 1924, this mountain cabin offers laid-back and relax country-style luxury. Old-fashioned charm and the rustic flavor of frontier living are all superbly blended with casual elegance. On the first floor sits bedroom, rustic bathroom with a two-meter-long soaking tub, living room, balcony overlooking the square, private terrace with mountain views, and kitchen.

On the second floor, the lodge is appointed with a luxury suite that includes a sitting area and separate bathroom. Designed to be reminiscent of Scandinavian wooden houses, its minimalistic clean lines will appeal to those seeking finer things in life. The lodge can accommodate up to eight people. Self-catering and personal chef service are available in the lodge.

Casita

Casita Stella and Luna represent finest in the luxury outback living. In shape, they are reminiscent of African mud huts to evoke the times of great expeditions. Inside, the casitas are finely appointed with handwoven middle-eastern wool rugs, handmade furniture, extra large duvets (to ensure you stay snug and warm at night), fine linens, embroidered ultra-fluffy towels and plush robes, slippers, spa slippers, hairdryer and natural amenities (shampoo, lotion, conditioner, cotton balls, and Q-Tips).

Each of them consists of a master bedroom as well as a working and reading area with cast iron wood stove for cozying up in front with a good book on a chilly evening. In building Stella and Luna, they took great care and consideration for the people with special physical needs. Therefore, both exterior and interior are designed on a single level which enables unobstructed movement. With private gardens outside and swimming pool and Japanese hot tub only meters away, you can consider them a private retreat in their own right.

Lakota tipis

On the property, there are genuine American Indian tipis made by Nomadics Tipi in North America that made tipis for Kevin Costner’s movie “Dances With Wolves”. Being inside a tipi is living a step closer to nature. During the day, a tipi has a mellow, even illumination that has never been equaled in a house. When it rains, it is cozy and dry inside while the drumming of the raindrops overhead soothes the soul.

At night, especially during the full moon, shadows of surrounding trees are painted on the cover of the wall and with clear skies, stars shine down between the poles. Guests staying in tipis have their own detached private bathrooms conveniently located within meters from the tipi. Bathrooms are fully equipped with hot water showers, toilets, bathrobes, slippers, and toiletries.

Ponderosa and Sweet Grass

En-suite room with single bed (Ponderosa) and double bed (Sweet Grass) will cradle you with its carefully appointed furniture, featherbeds, massage showers, uncluttered simplicity and above all nurturing silence as a result of natural, sheep’s wool insulation that is sourced from sheepherders in the valley. The wood for building doors, windows, and furniture was sourced at the ranch as a part of sustainable forestry program and it was built in collaboration with a local carpenter. This way, local people benefit from your stay in these small but beautiful dwellings. They come with private porches where you can wash down trail dust and enjoy a cold beer while watching evening settle over the valley.

Program

Wherever you are at in your riding, whether you are a seasoned equestrian or an absolute beginner, Linden Tree retreat and ranch believes they offer a horseback riding experience that will greatly surpass your expectations. Upon arriving at the ranch, there will be a time when everyone sits down to his or her first dinner. This is when the head wrangler comes to greet you and talk briefly about your riding experience.

From there, Linden Tree is prepared to match you up with the horse that will help in making this the best horseback riding experience you have ever imagined. No matter how much or how little experience you may have, all riders go through a brief orientation before getting on their horse. The riding times are inclusive of the safety briefing and rest periods for the longer rides. This helps bring horses back into your minds and allows you to begin your journey to becoming better riders.

All horseback riding at Linden Tree is designed to ensure both safety and pleasure. The ranch is pleased to offer a variety of lessons related to the safe and comfortable riding of the stable of horses. For the beginner, or someone returning to the saddle, they offer a riding school to hone skills and confidence. Private and group riding lessons are available.

One of the most important aspects of horseback riding at Linden Tree is woven throughout their entire horse program namely natural horsemanship. For all of the guests, that means that, in addition to mastering the technical skills of riding horses, they will adopt something much more valuable - a real understanding and a deeper communication with horses, that in short time become their best friends.

Two-hour horseback ride

The two-hour horseback riding program is the shortest riding program on the ranch with which you can start your cowboy adventure. Inhale the glorious scent of saddle leather mingled with wildflowers and sun-warmed pine. Delight in the simple luxury of experience - the power of a strong and willing horse beneath you, the freedom of the frontier - and satisfy your yearning for adventure. This scenic ride goes through the valley with spectacular views, stream crossings, gorges and meadows.

Itinerary

Monday

  • Canoe expedition (a whole day activity)

Tuesday

  • Two-hour horse ride
  • Winnetou trail (a whole day activity)

Wednesday

  • Riding lesson
  • Children’s pony rides
  • Day ride
  • Canoe expedition

Thursday

  • Two-hour horse ride
  • Winnetou trail

Friday

  • Two-hour horse ride

Saturday

  • Two-hour horse ride
  • Children’s pony rides
  • Wagon excursion

Sunday

  • Two-hour horse ride
  • Riding lesson
  • Cowboy games

It is possible to arrive any day during the week, for more information please send inquiry to Linden Tree retreat and ranch.

Location

This holiday will take place at Linden Tree Retreat & Ranch in Croatia situated in a valley at the base of Velebit mountain in Velika Plana, only a few kilometers from the birthplace of Nikola Tesla, Smiljan. Velika Plana valley together with Lika planes are known as the natural haven characterized by its beautiful green landscapes and unique vegetation whose combination proved to be ideal for the creation of the ranch with the main activity being horse riding.

Natural resources and wildlife of Velebit mountain provide the opportunity for an unforgettable adventure holiday in Croatia. Although Croatia is best known as a summer holiday destination, more and more people are seeking escape from the crowds and traffic and searching for a different active form of relaxation in nature in winter and throughout the year.

The ranch property is comprised of mountains, soft hills, meadows, pastures, forest, mountain-fed creeks and gravel roads or forest paths. The 50 acres of ranch land also encompass a mile of frontage along Ricina River that flows into the Lake Krušćica. To the far west and south, soft rolling hills give way to snow-capped peaks of the Velebit mountains. Northward and eastward, deciduous trees stretch along the valley floor following the river coming deep from the mountain.

The ranch is home to an array of wildlife, including wolf, bear, deer, ibex, fox, coyote, a variety of eagles and an array of birds. Velebit mountain is one of the last places in Croatia to have more animals than people. The ranch offers special vacations for wildlife enthusiasts in spring and fall, during seasonal migrations.

The ranch is also located 23 kilometers from the town of Gospic in a region known as Lika. They are off the beaten path in the southern region of the country approximately halfway between Zagreb and Split and close to Plitvice Lakes, Paklenica, Krka and Northern Velebit National Parks.

They are at an elevation of 700 meters or 2,200 feet. Driving distances from major cities and tourist sights are approximately one hour from Zadar and Plitvice Lakes, two hours from Zagreb and Split, three hours from Rijeka, five hours from Dubrovnik and Istria, and seven hours from Vienna, Venice, Belgrade, and Sarajevo.

Nearby places

  • Bakovac village, 5 kilometers
  • County hospital - 25 minutes
  • Gospic, 23 kilometers
  • Otocac Airport (LDRO) - 45 minutes' drive
  • Zadar and Plitvice Lakes - 1 hour

Features

Activities

  • Cycling
  • Hiking
  • Horse riding
  • Hot tub / Jacuzzi
  • Kayaking
  • Massage
  • Mountain biking
  • Swimming pool (outdoor)
  • Volleyball court
  • Zip lining

General

  • Balcony
  • Bar
  • Dining area
  • Environmentally friendly
  • Garden
  • In-room safe
  • Meditation garden
  • Restaurant
  • Special menu request
  • Terrace
  • Yoga studio
  • Pet friendly
  • Patio

Services

  • Bicycle rental
  • Dry cleaning
  • Free parking
  • Free Wi-Fi
  • Hair dryer
  • Ironing / ironing board
  • Laundry
  • Library
  • Meeting room
  • Parking lot
  • Room cleaning
  • Toiletries
  • Tour assistance
  • Wedding

Food

Linden Tree's food has been called soul food and designated as cooked with love. It is best described as a Croatian mosaic of world flavors - a sensational fusion of Mediterranean dishes plated with an international flare. Everything they serve is prepared fresh from scratch the same day in their open country kitchen, using the very best ingredients. Eating food grown on site or foraged from the nearby meadows and forest is at the heart of every Linden Tree menu. Respect for the sustainable production, harvest and preparation of these ingredients is always at the forefront of their mind.

Things to do (optional)

Whether you're into adventure or simply into enjoying beautiful mountain scenery while lying in the grass, Linden Tree retreat and ranch has got it all covered. For those who seek peace and quietness, they've got a secret garden where you can take a rest from the rest of the world. Grab a book from the library, explore your own thoughts or just take a nap. Refresh at the outdoor pool and relax in the Japanese ofuru hot tub. Since Linden Tree is an hour ride (or less) from the best Croatian destinations (Plitvice lakes, Smiljan - the birthplace of Nikola Tesla, Zadar, Kuterevo, etc.), guests can visit it individually or Linden Tree can help them organize the trip and excursion. For adventurous travelers, there are:

  • All-terrain vehicle adventures
  • Archery
  • Canoe expedition
  • Caving
  • Children’s pony rides
  • Cycling
  • Cowboy games
  • Day ride
  • Geocaching
  • Gold panning
  • Guided trip to Winnetou trail
  • Hiking
  • Kayaking
  • Mountain biking
  • Riding lesson
  • Survival academy
  • Wagon ride
  • Ziplining

Wellness

  • Aromatherapy
  • Forest day
  • Massage
  • Meditation
  • Yoga

What's included

  • 6 nights' accommodation
  • Breakfast
  • Usage of the outdoor pool, hot tub, parking and internet (free of charge)

What's not included

  • Excursions

How to get there

Driving directions from the east, north, and south

  • Take A-1 (a major highway that runs north-south).
  • Then, take Gospic exit.
  • At the bottom of the ramp, take left toward Gospic and follow the signs to Linden Tree Retreat & Ranch.
  • They are located 23 kilometers from the center of Gospic.
  • In Klanac, take right toward Donje Pazariste.
  • Drive 10 kilometers.
  • Drive through Donje Pazariste.
  • You will pass a brewery on your right.
  • Continue for another three kilometers.
  • Turn left when you see Linden Tree sign.
  • Linden Tree Retreat & Ranch is 0.5 kilometer on your left.

Driving directions from Jadranska magistrala, E65

  • Take the exit for Stirovaca (from June thru October as you can be snowed in at other times).
  • The drive is 53 kilometers long.
  • Go thru Stirovaca and Bakovac.
  • Linden Tree Retreat & Ranch is located five kilometers from Bakovac village.
  • Turn right to Velika Plana and follow the road for 0.5 kilometer.
  • They are on the left.

Arrival by airplane

Please book your flight to arrive at Franjo Tuđman Airport (ZAG) or Zadar Airport (ZAD).

Arrival by bus

Gospic has bus services to Zagreb and Split (several departures and arrivals daily). Zadar and Rijeka are served by bus lines. From there, you can arrange Linden Tree Retreat & Ranch's car and driver pickup service.

Arrival by train

Gospic has train services to Zagreb and Split (several departures and arrivals daily). From there, you can arrange Linden Tree Retreat & Ranch's car and driver pickup service.

Cancellation Policy

  • A reservation requires a deposit of 50% of the total price.
  • The deposit is fully refundable if the booking is cancelled up to 61 days before the arrival date.
  • The rest of the payment should be paid on arrival.
7 days / 6 nights
from --
Pricing information
  • Extra bed at Buffalo Lodge (40 EUR per person per night, maximum 3)
  • Extra bed at Casita Stella (52 EUR per person per night)
  • Extra bed in Lakota Tipis (40 EUR per person per night, maximum 2)
  • Extra bed at Casita Luna (47 EUR per night)

 

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