Horse Riding Holiday - riding pants

Essential Kit To Pack For Your First Horse Riding Holiday

If you are off on an equestrian adventure this summer, no doubt you are super excited about what lies ahead. There’s nothing like being on horseback all day in the open air, with the chance to gallop along the sea shore or tackle jumps through forest trails. To make sure you enjoy your horsy holiday in style, safety and comfort, it’s important to pack well.

While the destination and weather will determine some of your kit, there are some essentials that will help you to enjoy long hours in the saddle without any discomfort that could spoil your dream getaway. Here are some suggestions for your equestrian clothing packing list, from socks to sunglasses.

Riding boots

Good quality footwear is essential for your comfort, and to protect your toes from any clumsy hooves. If you are going to walk some sections of the trek with your horse, or you want to go exploring the local area on foot in the evenings, then short boots and chaps or all-terrain boots are a great option. 

If you don’t have any riding boots, make sure you take footwear that has a heel to prevent your feet slipping through the stirrups, and that the soles do not have deep chunky grips that could get jammed in the stirrups. Long equestrian socks or chaps will help prevent chafing on your calves from the stirrup leathers. 

Riding hat

A well fitting riding hat or helmet is essential. If you are completely new to riding and don’t currently have a hat, it may be possible to borrow one from your holiday provider. However, you should check that it meets the relevant safety standards first. Look for a Quality Assurance Mark such as a BSI Kitemark or an SEI mark.

The hat should fit well and not be too loose or too tight. Ideally you should have your hat fitted at a reputable equestrian supplier by a trained member of staff. Be wary of borrowing or buying a second hand hat, because you don’t know its full history and if it has had any impacts that could limit its effectiveness.

Jodhpurs or leggings

Jodhpurs or breeches are traditional riding legwear, and a great choice for a riding holiday. However, a popular modern alternative is riding leggings or tights, which are more lightweight and give great freedom of movement in the saddle, whilst providing structure and protection around the seat and knees. Two or three pairs should be fine for your holiday.


Layers are the key for long hours in the saddle, as it can be difficult to predict how warm or chilly you might be. Pack lightweight layers of moisture wicking materials and a mixture of T shirts and long sleeved tops.


Gloves are important to prevent blisters, or cold or sweaty hands. If you normally dislike riding in gloves, remember that you will be in the saddle for much longer than usual in unpredictable weather, and the reins may not be as supple or comfortable as you are used to. 

Climate specific gear

Some of your kit will be specific to the climate and weather forecast, so be prepared to pack items such as sunglasses or sunscreen, lip balm, and a decent raincoat and waterproof trousers. 

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