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“No Bad, But Could Be Better”

Akhal-Teke Horse Riding Center
Certificate of Excellence
Attraction details
Los Angeles
Level 6 Contributor
16 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
“No Bad, But Could Be Better”
Reviewed July 26, 2011

My friend and I wanted to explore Cappadocia's natural baeuty, but give our poor travel sore feet a rest during a long trip. We booked Akhal-Teke through an agent.

We had arranged a 4 hr ride, really ambitious for novice riders! We arrive and the facility is quite nice, with a big friendly Anatolian Shepherd dog and a cute cat greeting us. We sign a waiver, and were given helmets. They asked us our riding experience. I’ve ridden about 20 times in my life, and this was my friend's second time on a horse ever. We were brought our horses, my friend got a large chestnut male, and I got a beautiful even larger female paint, named Megan, which struck me as a funny name for a Turkish horse. The horses were obviously well cared for and in beautiful condition.

Soon we were off. Our guide, Barat, on a very large male paint, spoke very little English and was somewhat disinterested the whole day. Since Barat didn’t speak much English, this wasn’t a guided tour in any way, but more of a follow along and look at the sites, no explanation given. We were fine with that, but others may not be.

Also, no riding instructions were given at all, fine with me, but thankfully my friend is not the least bit high strung or panicky because although her horse was very calm and well behaved, it is a horse, and he spooked a little a few times. This was not the type of totally broken horses that just follow the leader that seem to be deviod of any energy or life. You know the type that show no interested until taking the well reheaarsed turn towards "home." These horses are lively and definitely have a mind of their own from time to time. It made it a very interactive ride, but at times I did have the fear adrenaline rush! They were very well trained that as soon as gently corrected they would fall in line again.

It took about a half hour to get out of town and another half hour to get to any of the natural formations. So anything less than a 4 hr ride would have been a big waste of time IMO. So after an hour we get to Zelve valley, and our ride really begins. We then ride to Pasabagi, which is really fantastic. We stopped for lunch at in Cavusin at Panoramic Cafe. It was a friendly local cafe, inexpensive (not included in the ride price).

Considering we paid a discounted price, we felt it was worth it for the beautiful scenery, and large, well cared for horses. If we had paid full price the disinterested guide probably would have bothered us.

Visited November 2010
2 Thank aimeekm
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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116 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Turkish first
  • Any
English first
Washington DC, District of Columbia
Level 4 Contributor
31 reviews
10 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
“Good for experienced riders, not good for beginners”
Reviewed June 9, 2011

My husband and I went on a 2 hour ride with Akhal-Teke. I've ridden hunter jumpers for 15 years, but my husband has only done a few trail rides on vacation. If you are an experienced rider, it's great! The horses (mostly Arabians) are spunky and seem well cared for. Mine fidgeted a lot and I had to really work to make her stand still and keep the pace I wanted, but it was nice to not have a trail horse that would only follow the leader. My husband's horse was a bit quieter, which was good.

However, I wouldn't recommend this activity for novice riders. I always check my tack before I get on, and tightened my horse's girth a few notches before mounting. I told my husband to as well, but unfortunately, he didn't realize how tight the girth should be, and the saddle fell under his horse mid-ride! The guide's saddle almost fell off as well, which made me think that they weren't too concerned with safety. The guide also goofed off a lot during the ride (swaying back and forth in his saddle, smoked cigarettes, etc) and I'm sure he would have been on the ground if his horse had spooked).

After the trail ride, we dropped my husband off at the barn and the guide took me on a gallop around the paddock, which was a lot of fun. If you can take care of yourself on a horse, go to Akhal-Teke and enjoy the ride!

Visited June 2011
4 Thank Lauren C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 3 Contributor
7 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
“3rd visit and planning the 4th”
Reviewed August 15, 2010

Just returned from my third trip to this wonderful oasis and can not wait to go back. The gardens were splendid and the restuarant food was exceptional fine dining and cuisine is an understatement. Enjoyed 4 lovely rides while visiting three along the river banks in the serene sunset of the day. Had the extreme pleasure of taking a morning ride into the mountains wonderful and breathtaking views. As a novice rider the horse selected for me was very well matched to my abilities and as safety is a high priority the wearing of the helmet was not an option it was required. The owner Ercihan Dilari fluent in both English and French makes communication not a problem and his service and hospitality to his guests is unsurpassed. Ercihan's daughter Tugba is gracious and has always a welcoming smile. Ercihan's son Bekir can certainly make your visit exciting. Trainer and guide Suzi Clarkson was extremely appreciated through her continuous looking back to check on her riders and even taking photos. Aziz the rear guide was gracious in his leading of small children though his English is minimal he goes out of his way in trying to understand and communicate. The remaining staff was always polite, cordial and accomodating and many of which had a good knowledge of the English language. I can not say enough about this wonderful place but my review title says it all.

2 Thank cashterri
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cambridge, Massachusetts
1 review
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
“horrible experience”
Reviewed June 29, 2010

My family are all experienced riders.When we arrived at the stable for a prearranged full day ride , several non english speaking young men brought out horses,offered no helmets, no attempt to match riding ability to horses, no effort to allow us to familiarize ourselves with the horses in the ring, not even stirrup adjustment. Immediately one guide speaking only turkish led us out on the road. Three minutes out a neighbor's donkey broke loose from his chain and bit a horse. The guide dismounted and tried to catch the donkey which immediately stampeded the horses back to the barn, never once suggesting we dismount. As my wife entered the barn she was thrown from the horse to the concrete barn floor fracturing her pelvis. The barn van offered to drive us to the hospital the next am to take my wife to the airport and head back to the US but failed to show or to call and when prompted merely said their van was needed elsewhere. We later learned that the horses used at this barn were completely untrained for pleasure riding and were right off a racetrack. I strongly discourage anyone from riding at this unsafe stable.

8 Thank mwy14
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
masteng, Manager at Akhal-Teke Horse Riding Center, responded to this review, December 11, 2014
It would be helpful for all future riding guests to read the reviews post 2010.. The horse center
suffered some short-comings but in the last years has once again become one of the best riding centers in the region. We have excellent safe and well-schooled trekking horses, good tack and capable guides. Our short rides ( 2 hours and less) are around the ranch and longer rides ( 1/2 day and onwards) take you into the famous Fairy Chimney landscape of Cappadocia.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 4 Contributor
31 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
“Relish Free Forward Movement!”
Reviewed February 3, 2010

At six foot two, I am most comfortable riding sixteen-hand Thoroughbred hunters across country. Back home, riding the rugged terrain of Dartmoor from Rosemary Hooley’s Skaigh Stables (www.skaighstables.co.uk), I have got used to a certain sort of forward going horse. After the initial shock of the difference in pace and cadence of Ercihan's Arabian-Anatolian crosses, I couldn’t help but be impressed by their courage and intelligence. Ilos would still be pulling to go faster at the end of a long day, and Elis would always find the smoothest path over stony ground. They were eminently sensible about looking after themselves and me, whether crossing a river or climbing a mountain. They behaved impeccably in circumstances that would have driven most English horses wild, exhibiting real grace under pressure. Sometimes size matters less than you think!

4 Thank Turktraveller
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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