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Normandy’s a great place to be in love! My partner Julien and I had promised each other a special adventure during our trip to Calvados. And what better way to experience the Flowered Coast’s natural scenery than on horseback? We headed off on a memorable horse ride with Ophélie and her horses along the golden sandy beach of Cabourg.

Meeting the team

Low tide. Fine weather. Appropriate clothing. Our checklist is ticked off for the ultimate equestrian adventure together! Julien and I meet up with our friendly instructor Ophélie at the Centre Equestre Poney Club de Cabourg Le Home. Open all year round, this riding club right next to the seashore is home to 48 horses and ponies, and welcomes riders of all levels and ages. We are introduced to three stunning, tall horses by the names of Balou, Sagesse and Choco, who have been carefully selected for us because they are beautifully responsive to beginner riders.

Getting the horses ready

From the start, Ophélie gives us all the tips to establish a good relationship with our horses. It’s time for a bit of grooming, an unmissable ritual before we saddle up. We first use the curry comb to make sure all the dirt is loose from the coat of the horse. To clean the horses, we then use several hard and soft brushes. Grooming horses is actually an intimate interaction: it relieves the itches, stimulates circulation, and keeps their skin and coat healthy. As we start bonding, they express great enjoyment, softly closing their eyes and relaxing.  

Grooming our horse © M-A Thierry

Time to saddle Up

After a last check-up on the horses, we follow Ophélie to the riding ring for some basic reminders on how to guide them, move forward, turn, stop… To mount our horses, we approach them on the left side, place our left foot in the left stirrup, and pull ourselves on our horse. Now we are ready to head to the beach!

Horse-riding on the beach © M-A Thierry

Horse-riding on the beach

We reach the beach after a few minutes only, discovering a long picture-perfect stretch of golden sand, bathed in sunshine. Facing beautiful waterfront Belle Epoque villas, Cabourg offers an extensive sandy beach that make it ideal for horse riding, especially at the end of the day, when the beach is empty. We listen to the soothing sounds of crashing waves and feel the wind in our faces as we horse ride across this breathtaking beach, gaining a newfound sense of freedom ! What a fabulous feeling to share with your loved-one!

Horse-riding on the beach © M-A Thierry

champagne at sunset

Contemplating the spectacular surroundings and peaceful setting, we happily canter in awe across the beach, right up to Merville-Franceville-Plage and its sand dunes. Ophélie has a surprise for us, timing it just right so that we arrive at the beach at a perfect time. A private terrace with a glass of bubbly awaits, leaving us mesmerized and our hearts pounding. Cheers! After the romance of the sunset, it’s time for more action to get back to Cabourg. We saddle up again, trot along at our pace, and even gallop through the water! What a one-of-a-kind experience!

Champagne at sunset © M-A Thierry / Olympict


With its beautiful sandy beach and 19th-century Belle Epoque architecture, Cabourg on Normandy’s Flowered Coast is a charming seaside resort most commonly associated with writer Marcel Proust and his famous novel, In Search of Lost Time.
Find out more about Cabourg

Children on the beach in Cabourg – © Sabina Lorkin © S. Lorkin / Anibas Photography


Centre EquestrePoney Club de Cabourg Le Home

44 avenue du président René Coty, 14390 Varaville


[email protected] | +33 (0)6 58 77 81 41

Helmets supplied

Please make sure you wear long trousers and high boots


Couples’ romantic horse ride on the beach (reservation only)

Bronze and Gold options: Horse ride, candlelight, champagne (1h30)

School holidays: €220 / Term-time: €250 – per couple

DATES 2023

From March to mid-October

June, July, August and September: Horse rides take place at the end of the day, to avoid crowds on the beach. Times are subject to tides.

In seasons other than summer, please enquire for times as they are subject to tides and availability.


Riding instructor

Growing up with horses throughout her childhood, Ophélie took over the family riding club in 2016. She loves leading horseback tours in Normandy, for couples, families and groups of friends, from beginners to experienced riders.

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