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“Got to go back!”
Review of Braco Stables

Braco Stables
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$150.00*
and up
Braco Stables Hiking and Biking Tour Tour from Falmouth
Certificate of Excellence
Level 5 Contributor
59 reviews
15 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 34 helpful votes
“Got to go back!”
Reviewed November 8, 2013

Great time spent. And definitely value for money, staff was friendly and knowledgeable. Horses and stable well kept.

Visited November 2013
Helpful?
Thank JoRamdeen
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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162 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Reading, United Kingdom
Level 5 Contributor
94 reviews
16 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 57 helpful votes
“Pleasant way to see some countryside”
Reviewed October 22, 2013

The stable was very keen for all of us taking part to understand the safety regs. It was a must we wore the safety helmets and to sign the information form.( so we should ) we were allocated a horse each mounted them (they helped you mount if you needed it. )The stable hands / guides checked stirrups etc before we started each of us nose to tail in a long trail we ambled through the lovely country side it was a shame we were not allowed to go any faster.It was About an hour before we got to the beach.There we could buy drinks and snacks if we had money ,but we didn't bring any we were told only to bring towel and camera,and our water we wanted to bring with us the guides took off of us before we left the stable! The scenery was lovely at the beach but we rode the horses in a pool area of the sea and the guides led us around just 3 times and there was a photographer on hand to take many pictures, it was a enjoyable few hours but too many people in the party and too short a time in the sea that was very rushed

Visited October 2013
Helpful?
Thank Lynn S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ipswich, United Kingdom
Level 3 Contributor
15 reviews
10 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
“Leon40”
Reviewed October 20, 2013

Horse ride/swim. Me and my friend Gemma went to this on Mon 14 Oct 2013. We were all given a quick debrief before hand on arrival, and filled out a health + safety form. Then we were all given a helmet, and other safety equipment. Then we were each allocated a horse [ mine was called Tiffany ]. Then we were given guides who were with us throughout the day, who then gave a hand to mount up using steps. After a few laps around the enclosure, we made our way through countryside to the beach area they use [ about a 40 min trek ]. After arrival at the beach we had a short drinks break and also took in the views. Then we all took in turn to mount up and go in the pool area within the sea, where we all did 3 laps whilst having numerous pictures taken. Then we all dried off before remounting and making the return journey back to the stables to end the trip. An amazing few hours, great scenery/sights, and we were all given great care/advice throughout the day. All the horses were very well behaved and very well looked after. Well recommended. You are given 2 times to go, 10am and 1pm, advise to take the 10am as it gets very hot even then. At the end it is polite to tip the guides for their efforts. You also get a free cold drink at the end.

Visited October 2013
Helpful?
Thank Leon402013
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Florida,USA
Level 5 Contributor
91 reviews
42 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 50 helpful votes
“Not what we expected.”
Reviewed October 14, 2013

Being a horse person this was not nearly as enjoyable as it could have been. First of all, everyone had to wear a bike helmet no matter what your experience or ability. Not happy about this little detail at all. Have I had known about the silly bike helmets I would have booked with another company. Then there was the nose to butt ride that followed. Really, you think you have to keep telling people to keep their horses' nose in the butt of the horse ahead of them? The staff definitely was only interested in getting to the beach as quick as possible. They constantly would ride up on a guest and swat their horse to close the gap or to make the nose to butt horses speed up a bit.

Once at the beach, the staff took a little break, away from their guest, that lasted about thirty minutes. During this time, you have the opportunity to purchase snacks and drinks from the little "snack bar" with a very limited selection of goodies including beer and rum. I understand now why they did not want anyone to bring their own water and backpack. I suggest if you book with Braco that you insist on being allowed to carry your backpack along with you! They were telling everyone to leave their backpacks with their driver. Very convenient if you plan to sell water at four dollars a pop plus the expected tips.

On the bright side, my wife enjoyed the ride in the water and I did get some good pictures of the horses in the pool of water. It's literally a pool with three sides made of concrete jutting out into the water. The ride back to the stables was just as hurried as the ride to the beach. Not much interaction between the staff and the riders with the exception of the occasional swat to the horses to keep them tight and moving. As someone else commented, there was a gallon jug of what appeared to be lemonade at the stable if you cared for something to drink. I'm really trying hard to leave some positive feedback about the excursion but not much to really make this an outstanding experience. I know there are better stables on the island and I would suggest you look into other stables and ask what is included in their ride package.

If you like riding and are skilled at riding this is probably not the excursion for you. Way to rushed and the staff is just going through the motions. We did, however, hand out good tips as I know this is the staffs main source of income.

Visited October 2013
Helpful?
Thank Parrotheadjoe
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kitchener, Canada
Level 6 Contributor
95 reviews
59 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 246 helpful votes
“Unique Experience that’s great for the Novice Rider”
Reviewed September 26, 2013

Our family of 5 went on the Horse Ride “N” Swim in August. Having never ridden on horses before, this was a new experience for our family. We booked this excursion as a tour package together with the River Rapids Adventure. A private driver (arranged by Braco) picked us up from our resort in Montego Bay and we arrived at the Stables approx. 40 minutes later. At the stable, we met up with 10 others who would be joining us on this Horse Ride "N" Swim. Once our horses, Freebee, Flash, Slim, Domino and Bismarck were assigned to us, we were given brief handling instructions and soon were on our way. Then for the next half an hour we rode in single file, crossed a road and casually trotted through pastures and lush countryside before reaching a lovely, white-sand, private beach.

Throughout our trek, the guides continually instructed us to keep our horse’s nose right up to the horse in front, however my horse did not always like to adhere to this and preferred to lag back a few feet. I was instructed to kick my heals into the horses side to speed her up, but she would not respond to this. The only time my horse sped up was when she heard the guide whistle or approach, and then I had a bumpy ride as she quickly trotted to catch up to her spot directly behind the tail of the horse in front of her.

Once we arrived at the beach we were able to purchase refreshments while the guides prepared the horses for the swimming part of the tour. Only three horses were saddled for the guests to ride in the water, so there was a bit of a wait before everyone had a turn. Being lead by a guide, the horse swim consisted of two circular passes through a beautiful aquamarine bay where tropical casuarina trees lined its shore. The swim part was short, but being able to ride on the back of a horse and experience their power and strength while they walked and swam in the warm water of the Caribbean Sea was an amazing and unique experience. Although the pressure of the water on the horses’ lungs caused them to breathe loudly, they did not seem to mind this swimming excursion.

After spending about one hour at the beach, we once again climbed onto our horses and made our way back. For another half an hour, we trotted through more countryside and along a trail beautifully outlined with colourful flowers before arriving at the stables. Once we dismounted and returned our helmets, the guides had glasses of complimentary fruit juice ready for us.

I had read reviews about professional photos being taken during the Horse Ride “N” Swim adventure. However, there was no one taking photos the day we were there, so the opportunity for us to purchase a professional photo of our family on our first horse ride and swim experience was not even an option.

Braco Stables runs a very professional, structured and safety-oriented operation and therefore, requires all riders to wear a helmet. Although long pants are recommended, it is not mandatory and guides do drape your towel over the side of your saddle to help prevent your legs from chafing. Overall we thought the guides were attentive to the horses and did an excellent job keeping them moving along in single file, however, they were not very personable (they didn’t even tell us their names) and they did not spend much time interacting or talking with us--unless it was to tell us to keep our horse close to the horse in front! There was no real direction given to us at the beach or how much time we could spend there nor did they take the time to share information and insight about the area and sites we were travelling through. Despite the guides’ lack of communication and interaction with us, the horses did appear to be healthy and looked well-taken care off.

Our Horse Ride “N” Swim adventure was a safe and unique experience. The horses are so well-trained and gentle and know exactly where to go, that this makes it easy for beginners to take on an excursion like this. In fact, by the second half of the trek, we felt more comfortable with the horses and would have appreciated the opportunity to see what it would be like to actually steer and lead our horse rather than just sit and hold onto the reins while the horse automatically followed along in single file. Also gliding through the water on the back of one these majestic creatures was certainly an amazing and one-of-a-kind, memorable experience.

Overall, this is a great excursion for the novice rider, but I think the experienced rider would feel restricted by the lack of riding freedom.

Visited August 2013
Helpful?
1 Thank cz63
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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