UPDATED MARCH 2017: Our guide features horseback riding stables in the New York City area, including NYC, Long Island, Connecticut, and the NYC suburbs of Westchester, Rockland, and Bergen County, NJ. Find where to take a riding lesson or pony ride near you.
If your child is begging for a pony, and all you see are dollar signs, it might be worth considering all the benefits horseback riding brings to kids.
Exercise is one, of course. Riding is aerobic, but it also builds muscle strength and increases balance, not to mention coordination, visual spatial skills, faster reflexes, and all-round circulation.
But riding offers more than just physical benefits. A child who is able to master the skill of synthesis with such a graceful, large animal will have improved self-confidence, self-discipline, and the appropriate ability to take risks. A child caring for a horse learns patience, care, respect, and responsibility.
RELATED: Find a local camp that fits your child's interests.
Here's a list of New York City-area horseback riding stables that offer children's riding lessons. Don't forget your helmet!
New York City Horseback Riding Stables
Bronx Horseback Riding Stables
Bronx Equestrian Center/Pelham Bit Stable
9 Shore Road
English- and Western-style riding lessons available by appointment for ages 6 and older. Pony rides are offered daily from 9am-5pm. A children's summer program is offered weekly from late June through mid-August for kids ages 6-17 interested in horses and horsemanship. Birthday parties, carriage rides, a petting zoo, and pony rides are also available.
The center offers lesson programs for young riders as well as adults. An after-school riding program features lessons in riding, grooming, stable management, and horse care with pick-up at some Manhattan schools. The center’s summer camp (offered weekly throughout the summer) features riding lessons, leisure rides, and horse care.
Brooklyn Horseback Riding Stables
51 Caton Place, Kensington
Offer English- and Western-style lessons for ages 6 and older in Prospect Park or a small indoor arena. Trail rides through Prospect Park are available for all riding levels.
Jamaica Bay Riding Academy
7000 Shore Parkway, Mill Basin
Private and family lessons are offered for kids of all ages and levels. Private and group trail rides, pony rides, and birthday parties are available. Summer camp for ages 5-15 includes daily lessons, beach riding, arts and crafts, and animal care. There is an elementary and middle school/high school riding team for appropriate ages and skill levels.
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Seguine Equestrian Center
440 Seguine Ave.
The center offers riding lessons by appointment for all ages in English style. A two-week summer camp for children ages 5-16 is also offered. Trail rides are not available at this location.
NYC Suburbs Horseback Riding Stables
Bergen County Horseback Riding Stables
Bergen Equestrian Center
40 Fort Lee Road, Leonia
Beginner to advanced riding lessons are available daily, except Mondays. For advanced riders, there are specialty trainers for each discipline, including jumping, hunters, equitation, and dressage. An after-school program and full-time summer camp are also offered.
Pony Power Therapies at Three Sisters Farm
1170 Ramapo Valley Road, Mahwah
Offers therapeutic riding and non-riding activities for children with special needs. Sibling program and summer day programs are available. School groups are welcomed weekly for lessons and classroom activities.
Saddle Ridge Riding Center
900 Shadow Ridge Road, Franklin Lakes
The center offers beginner to advanced lessons with experienced trainers. Guided trail rides are offered daily for a maximum of five people. Birthday parties and other parties for special occasions are available for up to 15 people. A summer camp for ages 5-15 is also offered.
Rockland County Horseback Riding Stables
Minetto's Stonehedge Farm
1152 Haverstraw Road, Suffern
Lessons are provided for all experience levels, as well as grooming/tacking and stable management lessons. The farm has both outdoor and indoor riding rings, and it features the RideKind therapeutic riding program for those with emotional, physical, and psychological special needs.
369 Strawtown Road, West Nyack
Private Western- and English-style riding lessons are offered for ages 4 and older. Petting zoos on site and "pony parties" are available remotely. There is a weekly summer riding program June through August in which kids ride, learn to groom the horses, and special activities.
Ramapo Equestrian Center
1152 Haverstraw Road, Suffern
Private English- and Western-style lessons, jumping, and dressage lessons are available. Birthday parties are also offered. Summer camp runs daily through late August; campers take lessons, learn stable management, and participate in arts and crafts, games, and outdoor activities.
Senator T. Morahan – Ken Freson Therapeutic Equestrian Center
15 Fernald Road, Stony Point
The full-service, year-round therapeutic and recreational riding facility with PATH certified staff, is open to the public. Private and group lessons available, as well as birthday parties, summer programs, and fundraisers. Small animal farm on-site.
RELATED: Get the best Rockland and Bergen family events in your in-box with our weekly newsletter.
Westchester County Horseback Riding Stables
Boulder Brook Equestrian Center
291 Mamaroneck Road, Scarsdale
Private and group lessons for children and adults (ages 6 and older) are offered at Westchester's largest indoor riding ring. Its summer camp includes daily lessons in riding and stable management. Pony rides are given daily and birthday parties are available on Sunday afternoons.
Chicory Meadow Farm
76 Jack Road, Cortlandt Manor
Group, semi-private, and private lessons are offered daily. Customized lessons are available based on a rider’s specific needs, abilities, and goals. A summer camp is offered that features hands-on horsemanship, riding, horse care, arts and crafts, nature walks, picnics, and games. The facility includes indoor and outdoor arenas.
Fox Hill Farms
204 Old Sleepy Hollow Road, Pleasantville
English-style riding lessons available in a group or private setting. Guided rides are available through the Rockefeller Preserve in spring, summer, and fall. A weekly summer camp in June through August includes riding lessons, horse care, and games. Pony rides are also available during the summer.
1125 Route 35, South Salem
Provides lessons for all levels and all ages. Facility includes 45 miles of trails, an indoor ring, two outdoor rings, and a Grand Prix field.
120 Cottage Ave., Purchase
Offers year-round lessons for ages 6 and older. Small mini-camps are available during school vacations and include lessons in horsemanship. A summer camp is offered June through August for ages 6-12 and features riding, grooming and tacking the horses, and art projects. Boarding and leasing of horses and ponies as well as showing opportunities are also offered.
Twin Lakes Farm
960 California Road, Bronxville
Private, semi-private, and group lessons are available daily, year round. The farm’s summer camp includes riding lessons, horsemanship, and arts and crafts.
Westchester Trail Rides
6 Croton Lake Road, Croton-on-Hudson
This stable offers guided horseback trail riding for all ages. Trails traverse more than 7,000 acres of land surrounding the Croton reservoir and dam. English and Western riding styles are accepted.
RELATED: Get the best Westchester family events in your in-box with our weekly newsletter.
Fairfield County Horseback Riding Stables
Blue Spruce Farm
626 Wheeler Road, Monroe
Lessons in English and Western riding are based on principles of yoga and tai chi. The farm has a therapeutic riding program for children with special needs, offers 1-hour guided trail rides, and hosts group events that include pony rides, hay rides, and theme parties. The farm’s summer camp includes daily riding, grooming, saddling, therapeutic massage and meditation, swimming, yoga, and pizza parties.
93 Silver Spring Road, Wilton
Private and group lessons are available by appointment. There is a summer camp for ages 7-14 that allows campers to ride daily and learn about horse care and stable management. The facility includes indoor and outdoor rings for year-round lessons.
374 Hulls Farm Rd, Southport
Private, semi-private, and group lessons offered for those who want the whole package in their equine journey. Knowledgeable instructors and quality lesson horses ensure our students experience is safe, fun and educational. Indoor and outdoor facilities available.
Silver Horseshoe Riding Stable
350 Wolf Harbor Road, Milford
Group, private, and semi-private lessons are offered in English and Western styles. The stable has an outdoor riding arena and a lighted indoor arena. Birthday parties are offered but space and time is limited.
Spring Meadow Farm
918 Wheelers Farm Road, Milford
Private and group lessons for ages 4 and older of all ability levels. The farm hosts a summer horsemanship and riding program. Therapeutic riding lessons are available based on PATH standards.
29 Giles Hill Rd, Redding
This holistic farm specializes in teaching Aware Riding, focusing on releasing tension and developing senses and balance in orer to ride well. It also teaches stable management, and offers group and private classes on topics such as show preparation, braiding, mane pulling, clipping, tack fitting, tack cleaning, horse clothing, first aid, leg wrapping, restraint, feeding and nutrition, worming, shoeing options, lunging, round penning, conformation, and movement.
RELATED: Get the best Fairfield County family events in your in-box with our weekly newsletter.
Long Island Horseback Riding Stables
Nassau County Horseback Riding Stables
499 Winding Road, Old Bethpage
Offers Western and English riding lessons and trail rides for ages 12 and older in Bethpage State Park. Night rides are offered in the summer. A therapeutic riding program is available for ages 5-21 of all skill levels. A “mommy and me” program for ages 18 months to 5 years includes horsemanship and some riding instruction.
Nassau Equestrian Center
62 Route 106, Jericho
Lessons are offered for ages 6 and older, beginners through advanced. Semi-annual horse shows are held to showcase students’ progress. Summer camp is offered June-August for ages 8-14 in which kids ride twice a day and learn to care for a horse. Guided trail rides are given for two to four people ages 12 and older.
New York Equestrian Center
633 Eagle Ave., West Hempstead
Private English- and Western-style lessons are offered for all ability levels. Group lessons are for intermediate-level riders to advanced jumpers. Guided, hour-long trail rides are given through Hempstead Lake State Park for those ages 13 and older. Programs for Boy and Girl Scouts are offered, and birthday parties are available. Weekly summer camp programs are offered from late June through the first week of September, Monday-Friday from 9am-4pm. After-school fall and spring programs are also offered Monday-Friday (students choose one day per week to come in for an hour and a half).
RELATED: Get the best Nassau County family events in your in-box with our weekly newsletter.
Suffolk County Horseback Riding Stables
Babylon Riding Center
1500 Peconic Ave., West Babylon
Lessons in Belmont State Park for beginners to advanced riders with private lessons, trail rides, and riding evaluations. Birthday parties are available at the ranch or your location in Suffolk County.
Country Farms Camp and Equestrian Center
200 Bellport Ave., Medford
Lessons are taught to all ability levels. The facility includes 14 acres with an indoor arena. Summer camp runs Monday-Thursday in July and August for children who have completed at least 5½ hours of private lessons. Birthday parties are available upon request.
Deep Hollow Ranch
Route 27 (3 miles east of Montauk Village), Montauk
Western-style beach and trail rides are offered for beginners to advanced riders. Private, guided rides are also available. Tours, trail, and beach rides for school and group trips are offered upon request. Pony rides are offered on site.
East End Stables
171 Oak View Highway, East Hampton
Riding lessons and horse training are offered on site. The facility includes an indoor ring and two outdoor rings. Pony camp runs through the summer, daily (except Wednesdays) from 9am-12pm.
Island Hills Stables
26 Rocky Point Road, Middle Island
Private lessons are available. There is a summer camp in July and August with riding lessons, grooming and tacking, and recreational activities (Monday-Friday 9am-2pm). Two-hour birthday parties are also available.
Rising Stars Equestrian Center
499 Winding Road, Old Bethpage
Private and semi-private lessons, group lessons for intermediate/advanced riders, and mini lessons for kids are all available. After-school, holiday, customized, and birthday programs are offered. At the center’s summer camp, which runs from June through August, kids can ride, groom, bathe, and tack a horse as well as play games.
Sagamore Hill Stables
7 Downs Road, Huntington
Private riding lessons are offered Tuesday-Saturday by appointment for ages 5 and older of all experience levels.
RELATED: Get the best Suffolk County family events in your in-box with our weekly newsletter.
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