Smiling Horses

Smiling Horses, Monteverde: Address, Phone Number, Smiling Horses Reviews: 4.5/5

Smiling Horses
4.5
About
Sabine who speaks English, French, Spanish and German and offers a variety of horse treks in the area starting in different locations depending on the ride you are taking, from $ 25 US per hour to day trips to specialty tours including a Full Moon Ride. Several multi-day treks are also on offer. Smiling Horses is a true destination in Costa Rica. Please note that we offer rides on private farms for beginners and vacation riders that offer great views to the Ocean and the Cloud Forest and also ride through the forest. For advanced riders we offer specific tailored rides out in the country site in the surroundings of Monteverde.
Suggested duration
2-3 hours
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4.5
183 reviews
Excellent
154
Very good
21
Average
2
Poor
1
Terrible
5

yw21
Schmerikon, Switzerland2 contributions
Would love to do it again
Oct 2021 • Couples
It was a great experience. Sabine is friendly, helpful, and very caring. The horses are very well trained and also very well taken care of. One can see Sabines love for her animals.
Riding with Sabine is not a "typical" tourist attraction, where one horse just walks after the other for a couple of hours and everybody can just sit on them - with Smiling Horses it realy is Riding - in an amazing scenery. The ride was amazing and I can recommend it to everyone with riding experience. I would absoulutly do it again.
Written October 16, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

JulietteGasselin2021
2 contributions
Galloping escape in the refreshing heaven of Monteverde
Jul 2021
I rode in the morning with Sabine in the mountains, a long time had gone by for me without riding a horse, I apprehended a little, but I do not regret this experience for one bit! I had the chance to have a private lesson, Sabine was of great company and of great advices, the horses are beautiful and docile, the views are incredible . You are increasingly filled with a sentiment of freedom if you are leiseruly admiring and enjoying the moment or adrenaline if you are accelerating / flying on the back of the animal.
Definitively recommend it!!

Thank you Sabine :)
Written July 4, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Jill P
3 contributions
Highlight of my trip!
May 2021 • Solo
The morning I spent riding with Sabine was the highlight of my trip in Costa Rica. Sabine is passionate and knowledgeable about her horses and treats them very well. She took the time to choose the right horse for my skill level and made sure I felt safe and comfortable before we started. We rode for more than four hours and took in some incredible views of the forests and mountains and saw many species of birds. During our ride, I enjoyed talking with Sabine, who is very friendly and kind. I would absolutely ride with her again next time I come to Costa Rica.
Written May 12, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

JolyB
Hartford, CT42 contributions
Sunset ride during Corona March 2020
Mar 2020
We were in Monteverde during the mid March 2020 and had planned to take the sunset horseback riding tour. I had exchanged a couple of emails with Sabine earlier making the booking. The day before she contacted me to confirm (due to Corona many were canceling). We exchanged a couple of text and she was very quick and responsive. We arrived at the farm where we mounted the horses and went around farms and mountains. We were lead by a gentleman who didn't speak much English but his son spoke good English and kept telling us what to look at the where we were passing. We enjoyed the beautiful mountain views and ultimately came to a place where the sun was setting on the hills. It was am amazing site. There were other group of people gathered there too enjoying the wonderful site. We were rode the horses for around 2+ hours. We had never been on a horse before so 2 hours were really rough on our rears though we had a really good time. We had 3 kids with us who absolutely loved it. One tip is to wear full length cloths due to bugs and low hanging branches. Thanks Sabine for organizing this.
Written April 6, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Thank you for riding with us. It was a special time before the in known to come. We were glad we were able to accommodate your riding experience.
Written February 8, 2021
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Gemma
1 contribution
Great sunset tour in Monteverde
Jun 2019 • Couples
I had a great time on a sunset trek. Sabrine was really helpful and accommodated me when I was booking at the last minute. She gave me several different options and a back up if the weather meant it couldn’t go ahead. As I had riding experience this was also taken into account so I went off separately with one of the guides for a few faster loops. It was a great experience 😊
Written June 21, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Thank you for your very valuable feedback. We are pleased to hear you gotten as experienced rider the ride you wanted to get as it is always a challenge to accommodate a mixed level experienced group.
Written March 6, 2020
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Lelde B
4 contributions
Amazing horse riding experience in Costa Rica!
Jun 2019 • Family
I just had a 3 hour tour guided by Sabine herself and it was certainly one of the best experiences I‘ve had here in Costa Rica.
Sabine is such a friendly, caring and wonderful horse riding companion. She takes great care for her horses and also for her guests.
The horses are an absolute pleasure to ride on. So well trained and so well taken-care of - they follow your every command. One must note though, Sabine only organises tours for experienced riders.

I had an individual tour, and could have not been happier with it. The path is so interesting, and the views on the way are amazing. But the lovely mare I rode was the biggest treasure - absolutely fantastic and very easy to ride on.
Sabine‘s heart is at her horses, and one can really see that she takes great care for them.
If you are in Monteverde and an experienced rider, don‘t miss out this opportunity - it is truly worth it!
Sabine speaks fluently English, Spanish and German, which is a great asset, too.
Thanks a lot for this wonderful experience!
Written June 2, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Thank you for your wonderful feedback. I love to go out on "real rides" as we had together :-)
Written March 6, 2020
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Paul W
2 contributions
Sunset horse trek
May 2019 • Couples
Amazing experience, really friendly guide who pointed out lots of animals, including a very large snake and a toucan. Beautiful scenery, and smiling horses who were very well mannered. Couldn’t recommend this experience enough.
Written May 1, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Thank you for letting us know you had a great time riding on the privater farm ride.
Written March 6, 2020
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Inlovewithtravels
1 contribution
Not again!
Apr 2019 • Solo
I booked the waterfall Tours via E-Mail and Sabine responded and said they were gonna pick me up from my accomodation what they did indeed. So far so good! When I arrived at the stable a man approached me and asked if I speak spanish what I negated! Without any further explanation he came back with a helmet and pointed on my supposed horse. I asked if no one would ne coming who speaks english because I would Not feel comfortable with going with someone who can't understand me. So the guys son came as a translator. I asked for Sabine he told me she wasn't here and it wasn't her stable which for sure totally surprised and discomforted me. In the end the son joined the tour and acted as the translator. The Tour itself was nice, when they realized I was an experienced rider we went faster. So this is not a complaint to the family Who owns the stable and conducted the ride!
It is a complaint to Sabines smiling horses itself! After the tour I told her about my discomfort and that She never asked if I speak spanish or mentioned that the tour guide won't be able to talk english.
Her respond was really unfriendly. She just told me it would be my fault since we are in Costa Rica where you speak spanish and I never mentioned I cannot speak it.
The website tells the tour is provided in English, spanish, German and French! !

I was reading through other reviews and it seems I am Not the only one who had this experience and the host of my accomodation told me, he only hears bad things about this Company!
So do not choose it!
Written April 29, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hello Katharina from Germany, Thank you for taking our waterfall tour and I am glad to hear you enjoyed the ride. I am very sorry you were feeling uncomfortable with Costa Rican Spanish. This gives me the chance to state our website: "We attend all riding guests on arrival for a horseback riding briefing. Local guides will take you around the countryside. I enjoy helping beginners loose their fear of horses or riding as well as we love real horse talk. Give us a call, if you have more questions to set up a ride that suites your expertise. I speak fluent English, French, Spanish and German. I adapt the tours in the countryside and choose the horses according to their character and level of experience of the rider. We offer easy going horses for children, all of which are very safe and comfortable. Smallest children, in general below 3 years of age ride with their parents. Above we need to see the size of the child and we will take them in the lead until about 6 years of age. All riders wear riding helmets and get a briefing before the ride. The guides have years of experience in guiding." And yes, I attended you first in English and then in German. In Monteverde we have no English speaking horse guides. Smiling Horses has sometimes the luck to have English speaking Volunteers that are experienced enough with horses and make people feel safe to ride here in the mountains. I don't mention this option online, because I cannot promise this. Most experienced rides I guide myself. And thank you for the comment on "hosts” in town don’t recommend us. The reason is, that we don't pay commission. We want to make sure we talk to our clients directly to provide them the exact tour they want on the level they need it. Horses are not machines that you hook just anybody on. Plus, the money goes straight to the horses and not to intermediates. We provide great service since more than 20 years. I hope you keep riding in the future during your vacation; after all that is what you loved in the tour that we provided to you.
Written May 1, 2019
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

SanneJ8450
Hammel, Denmark29 contributions
Healthy well trained good tempered horses
Jan 2019 • Solo
I had booked the the ride and arranged for them to pick me before leaving for Costa Ricas. They forgot about the pick up but it turned out to be a compleat win-win for me. As soon a I called after waiting about half an hour Sabine jumped in her car and was there within 10 minutes. The group was already gone so I had a private tour instead with the guide and his young daughter. The guide didn´t speak any enligsh and I don´t speak spanish so I couldn´t ask much about the sorrundings and the horses but he did his very best to still explain and it wasn´t a problem as I am used to riding and the horse I was given was really great to ride and had I gone out with the group I was suppose to I probably wouldn´t have gotten to galop on the tour.
Written February 10, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Thank you Sanna for riding with us. I am glad you enjoyed your time on the private farm ride.
Written March 10, 2019
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

John L
San Francisco, CA8 contributions
Wonderful couples ride to waterfalls
Dec 2018 • Couples
My wife and I rode to the local waterfalls recently with Ulysses and his son William. It was wonderful! I have only ridden horses a few times and it was all very easy and professional. The hike to the waterfalls went down some steep paths so it is only for those who are fit. But the waterfalls were private, beautiful, and I highly recommend the ride and Sabine's overall.
Written December 31, 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Thank you John for riding with us. You said it all and we are glad you enjoyed your time at the waterfall.
Written March 10, 2019
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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