Testimonials for São Joaquim Adventure Trail and Farm Stay

São Joaquim Adventure Trail

  • Dear Mr. Rohmer Our feed-back on the São Joaquim Adventure Tail organized by Riding Brazil HorseBack Adventures is, in summary, very positive. The weather was ideal, which was apparently a stroke of luck, as the weather reports after our stay showed slightly wetter forecasts. Pick-up and drop-off in Florianopolis by Hendrik Fendel worked perfectly, as the entire stay was well organized. Hendrik's knowledge of German was of particular benefit to me, who only spoke minimal Portuguese. The various accommodations were always in a cozy and family environment. The selection of trails was well made taking into consideration both difficulty and scenic variety. They were authentic and not especially prepared for tourists. The terrain of the routes offered everything but desert sand and snow. The incredible toughness, sure-footedness, fearlessness and willingness of the hoofed animals left a lasting impression on us and this performance was probably the most important basis for the success of the this horseback adventure with Riding Brazil. Elvio, the trail boss, who obviously does not belong to the GPS-affine generation, amazed us with his incredible sense of direction and time. His skills as a fire maker and coffee brewer in the open borders magic and need to be specially praised. We consider ourselves lucky that we were able to enjoy this riding program despite the generally unfavourable situation at the moment and are taking lasting memories to Europe with us. Warm regards and all the best for the whole team! Irene Giner-Reichl and Reinhard Giner February 2022
  • Dear Mr. Rohmer, please find below our feed-back regarding our ride. I can say up front that the result is positive. The weather was ideal despite the forecast of rather humid prognostics. Pick-up and transfer made by Hendrik Fendel was perfect as was the organization of the whole stay and ride. Hendriks language skills were also helpful since my Portuguese does not get me very far. We experienced great hospitality in a cosy and familiar atmosphere. The trail has been picked with expertise, offering thrilling and variable scenery for all levels of difficulties. One could see that it was not a tourist trail, which we appreciated very much. Probably the most significant part that contributed to the full success of this ride however was the unbelievable toughness, sure-footedness, intrepidness and willingness of our horses leaving a deep and long lasting impression with us. We were amazed about Elvios, sense of time and orientation. Apparently, he does not belong to the GPS addicted generation. I also need to mention here that he proofed to be a master chef at the fireplace and excellent coffee brewer in the wild. We consider ourselves very lucky to have been able to enjoy this riding itinerary despite the overall unfortunate situation. We will keep this great experience in lasting memory back to Europe. Irene Giner-Reichl, Reinhard GinerJanuary 2021
  • This year I strayed from the usual Montana riding experience or the alternative of crossing New Zealand to try riding in the Santa Cantarina state of Brazil. I knew the area from business trips and wanted to get behind the cities, hotels and beaches to the real Brazil. The reality was ahead of my expectations-this riding beats Rockies and European trail riding hands down. The trip starts with a pick up from the delightful holiday island of Florianópolis, also good for a few days pampering at the end of the trip. I was early in the season and the ride consisted of myself and the intrepid boss of Southern Cross, the German Brazilian Peter. Driven by the Ranch Owner Elvio we wound up the valley to the mountain town of Urubici. The gaucho experience got off right away with a visit to the local rodeo where I was warmly welcomed despite being as conspicuously foreign as if I had worn a NASA space suit. This is the gaucho life with gaucho people and their lives centres on their horses. You rapidly realize you are not visiting a dude ranch for visitors. The proper riding started the next day. There is not much in the way of tourist infrastructure here and the tour is cleverly built around Elvios extended family. So you mount up at his Mum's house and then head out trailing from family Fazenda to family Fazenda for a few days, before reaching Elvios own ranch deep in the plateau country. The horses were sturdy local Crioulo and Crioulo crosses and made short work climbing through the sub tropical vegetation up to the plateaus where we were free to canter at will through the mountain pasture. The saddles are comfortable and padded by 3 layers of sheepskin, and the raincoats came out several times for Lord of the Ring type deluges and proved the best I have used anywhere. The mountain rains made for adventure as we made our way through the sub tropical vegetation along with thunder crashing down. Most of the time it was bright and sunny and we meandered from fantastic view to fantastic view. Lunchtime was usually an improvised barbecue by a stream and a well earnt snooze after a swig or two of Cachaça. The horses were rotated regularly since the going is tough and we learnt their individual personalities, as well as the mules that carried packs. The star mule took our luggage back to civilization at the end of the week causing only slight concern when it disappeared over the horizon with Peters working cash flow for the next few weeks and my passport and credit cards. But in the true Brazilian way order was soon restored. The accommodation was simple but comfortable and the food and drink varied and plentiful. Evening entertainment centred on what became a needle chess championship or just hanging out drinking wine and beer. We had plenty of chances to see the ranch at work, from milking (ever tried an early morning cappuccino straight from the udder?), to herding to activities that brought a tear to my eyes never mind the bullocks. Everything is at a steady pace and you can participate a much or as little as you wish to. Language is an issue but Southern Cross makes sure that translation is available. And in any event, everyone is so friendly and laid back you get the message eventually. Without reservation, this is a superior alternative to the trail rider in search of an authentic trip. The riding level is moderate and the most required skill is confidence in steep ascents and descents. It's more hanging on than dressage! Once you have gone through the Santa Catarina experience, you will find the conventional European or North American trail ride tame. It's good value too, at about 1000 pounds including all, but you do need to get to Florianópolis. It's an easy flight from São Paulo and the holiday becomes best value when combined with some sightseeing or sun worshiping to set off the flight costs. Peter Wolfe Riyadh (Saudi Arabia)
  • In November 2013, I decided to revisit Brazil. To see more of the country, enjoy the beaches and meet up with old friends. But also, with one main purpose: to do a horse ding trail. Not just a couple of hours, but at least a week. I am very happy I found Riding Brazil. It took some organizing and emailing back and forth, but Peter was really helpful, thinking along with me and within a few days it was all arranged. I was welcomed by Elvio and Rose, their grandson Leandro and Nicole, who works for Riding Brazil. What a great time I had! The riding was fantastic, the scenery amazing, the friendliness and care everyone took of me was wonderful. I have done trails before in other countries, and each time one of the best parts of the trip is the immersion into daily life in a totally different environment. I loved the total absence of a phone or internet connection and the resulting feeling of freedom and quietness. No restless Facebook checking, staying in touch with people and 'urgent' emails. But lots of riding, (good!) food, good company, a bed and a shower. And the places we stayed offered more than that even. Because each house was someone's home, it felt really personal, warm and welcoming and everyone made me feel at home. What I also liked, was the flexibility and suggestions of Elvio and Rose. For example, the first day I had some time to acclimatize (after an 18 hour trip straight from Holland) and had a little swim and sunbath in the river with Nicole and Leandro, we went to a rodeo one afternoon and evening, we had dinner out in Urubici after I merely mentioned that I loved pizza, and when Nicole found out I would like to experience some cow herding, that's what we did. As to the horses, they were amazing. Elvio really takes pride in them and looks after them really well. Their sure-footedness and stamina never stopped to amaze me. Steep slopes, deep rivers, rocky underground or tricky mud pools, thick bushes, they took it all in their stride without hardly a misstep. To remember how good the trip was, I just look at the photos and in each one I see myself smiling like a happy little girl. So, if you love horses, want to experience real Brazilian country life and to discover more of Brazil than the beaches, Riding Brazil is definitely the place to go. Christien MulderHolland
  • The Santa Catarina highlands
  • An unexpected but highly interesting meeting
  • Elvio at the top of the waterfalls
  • Dear Peter, dear team of RidingBrazil, thank you very much for the wonderful time, the big adventure and all the great moments you gave us in the Brazilian backland of Santa Catarina. Everything was just perfectly organized, the horses were fit enough to bring us safe through the adventurous forests and highlands. Rosie gave us always a warm goodbye in the morning and a hearty welcome in the evening, a cosy home and last but not least wonderful breakfasts, coffee times and dinners, while Elvio was just perfect with the horses and the lunch/churrasco at campfire. Thank you very much for sharing all your knowledge about Brazil, Brazilians and the nature. Unfortunately we have already forgotten many names of trees and birds, so we have to come back soon! Markus and KilianSwitzerland
  • Markus and Kilian
  • The ride was beautiful and interesting. We loved the landscape and the freedom of the ride. It was not a boring head to tail ride on deadhead horses. I was very impressed with our horses and loved the criollos because they were sure footed, even tempered and responsive. They did everything that we asked them to do. The sheepskins and saddles made for a comfortable ride. I was concerned that I may get sore or that my back may tighten up spending 6-8 hours in the saddle each day but I had absolutely no soreness or back pain. We enjoyed the steep ascents and descents in the mountains as much as the trotting and loping through the open terrain. I have to say though that the midday break may have been my favorite. It's hard to beat a traditional churrascaría with cowboy coffee followed by a siesta! Our hosts were perfect. After I had known Peter for a couple of hours I felt like we were old friends and I miss our dinner conversations. Elvió and Rosie made us feel like family, not tourists. Both of them showed my 9- year old daughter Kayla special attention and she could feel their warmth and hospitality. Elvió took great care of all of us including his horses. He is a true gentleman, farmer, cowboy and a terrific guide. Rosie is an amazing hostess and she took great care of us too. Every day she would cook an incredible breakfast with homemade cheese rolls, bread, fresh fruit, jams and eggs. She would pack us a delicious lunch and always cooked an exquisite, hearty dinner that my grandmother would be jealous of. Kayla is still talking about Ms. Rosie and her cooking and Mr. Elvió and his horses. Even though I know that Elvió and Rosie were working very hard to take care of our group, they made it look so easy and never lost their smile. Sebastian and his wife were also very friendly, warm and engaging and were always making us feel very welcome. The accommodations were all comfortable, clean and felt authentic. I appreciate our hosts letting us into their homes. My favorite was Elvio's and Rosie's home followed by Sebastian's. It was a real treat having a private bath at Sebastian's. I loved staying at Rosie's brother's house and meeting her parents because it was like being back with family. I forgot the name of the other facienda were we stayed but I really liked their big barn Kayla and I had very high expectations for our adventure and you exceeded all of them. We have and will continue to recommend this trip to others. I want to go on the Pantanal trail and I am also trying to find a medical conference in Rio later this year and would book the horse trip near Rio with you if that were the case. I want to thank-you for our trip and really can't think of anything that you should change. If you speak to Rosie and Elvió please tell them that Kayla and Phil say hi. Phillip and Kayla Barron
  • Phillip and Kayla Barron
  • The horses were of excellent endurance, surefooted, very willing and easy to control. We found the Brazilian tack surprisingly comfortable! The ride as such was very enjoyable, difficult terrain that the horses made look almost easy. Ivana and I appreciated the end-of-the-day trots and canters. The Hosts were beyond compare. Rosie and Elvio were exceptional hosts, Rosie's cooking was fabulous. The accomodations were minimalistic, but it gave us good sense of living on a fazenda Our Guide was knowledgeable und friendly. How satisfied were you with the booking process? (Travel Agency, Information Provided, Payments etc.) Very happy, no issues. This is an "authentic" ride to experience Brazilian countryside, with minimalistic accommodation. Also the pace – given the terrains – was slower than most other rides than we took. That said, for all the reasons above the trip exceeded our expectations and we would recommend it to others. Ivana Bulirova and Ales BuliWashington DC (USA)
  • My husband and I returned recently from an exciting and unique trip to Brazil, organized by the tour operator "Riding-Brazil / Horseback Adventures". The whole trip was organized in all details, very well composed and tailor-made for us. It started with a 3-day stay at the Iguacu Falls, which were really fascinating. We experienced imposing and breathtaking impressions of the Falls and the surrounding National Park. Then we went to the diversified coastline of the State of Santa Catarina to watch whales. In the sheltered coastal waters the Southern Right Whales nurse their young and come right up close to the shore. During boat trips we could observe the mother whales with their calves and take pictures of them. It is such an amazing experience to see these huge animals coming so close to the boat that we can almost touch them. Even from the shore the whales can be spotted. After these two tour components that had rather sighting character, we started our active adventure holidays, with the Sao Joaquim Riding Trail through the mountains of Santa Catarina. The trail led through the fabulous and virtually pristine mountains in the Sao Joaquim National Park and farmland, where grazing cattle and native animals could be observed, but hardly a human soul. The flora enchants among others with huge Araucarias (Paraná pines), Dicksonia Giant Ferns and small, bright red orchids (sofronites coccinae) growing on trees. Each tour of the trail was different from the previous one, every day surprised horses and rider with new challenges. The horses ability to master steepest ascents and descents in the mountains, to cross rivers, marshes, bushes and thickets was incredible. They were chosen according to the riding level of each rider and were changed several times. The warm and hospitable reception of the riding guests by the farm team as well as the culinary skills of Rosie and the accommodations, unique by itself, were a great experience. The daily lunch break with Churrasco (Brazilian barbecue) on the open fire and a following siesta under the shady trees provided also special moments. During the tour, our guide Peter Rohmer, with his broad knowledge, informed us in an entertaining manner about flora and fauna and the farmers life in the mountains of Santa Catarina. As he lives a long time in Brazil, he can explain about the country and its people, history and the current situation in an wonderfull way. He thus gave us a more open view of life in Brazil. It's clear for us that this trip wasn't our last Brazil (Riding) tour. For everybody who is interested in horseback riding and likes the taste of adventure in almost pristine nature we can fully recommend this trail. We thank Peter Rohmer for unforgettable travel impressions of Brazil. With warm regards from Dresden, Margit and Siegfried BroßmannDresden (Germany)
  • Hallo Peter ......Gabi and myself have arrived well in Germany and are back to business as normal. Again, thank you very much for the great time we had in Brazil. The whole journey turned out perfect: the organization, the itinerary, the horses and everything else was just like we had imagined it should be. Gabi also pointed out that this would be one of those rare trips you wanted to do twice..... I agree...maybe in a few years...... Beate Geigner and Gabi SchulzeWeißdorf, Berlin (Germany)
  • Margit and Siegfried Brossmann, Beate Geigner, Gabi Schulze and Elvio
  • Cher Peter, La vie parisienne a repris ses droits sous un ciel gris et dans une ville embouteillée. On a fêté en une fois Noël, le jour de l'an et nos retrouvailles avec Lane et Franklin, dont c'est l'anniversaire. Toutefois l'aventure brésilienne est encore en toile de fond et les images des canyons sont toujours là. Je voulais te remercier pour ces 10 jours hors du monde dont nous gardons un souvenir très fort. Oriane et Hugo se joignent à moi pour te souhaiter une année 2014 de succès pour tes projets. Très amicalement Olivier DusserreParis (France)
  • Salut Peter! In short, as the hour is late. I just wanted to let you know that wir arrived this afternoon, sound and safe in Nice, where we have Brazilian Temperatures (32°). I couldn't wait to check my pictures in the computer. They came out rather irregular, but some were quite all right. Also would I like to thank you for the beautiful trip you put together for us and the great stay in Arraial do Cabo. Alain GottiniauxNice (France)
  • Alain and Catherine
  • A liberdade me falta
    (It is the freedom that I am missing...)
    All started when I punched my favorite passions "Brazil+Riding" into the search engines and Peters website came up. It sounded all very tantalizing but I needed a push to convince myself to go on an organized tour. We emailed back and forth and even telephoned a couple of time. Was supposed to be a 2 weeks journey ended up to be an extensive riding adventure in both regions the Brazilian Pantanal and the highlands of Santa Catarina and I got more that I had hoped for. I appreciated the beautiful landscape of the São Joaquim National Park, die overwhelming hospitality of our hosts Elvio and his wife Rosi, Hilarios friendliness, despite his tough work, the patience everybody had with me, the early morning Camargo, better than any Italian Capuchino, the unbelievable meals Rosi put on the table and, of course, the rides cattle drives with Elvio and team. My next venture would take me to an outlet where I was supposed to learn something about the "doma racional" but did not live up to my expectations. It but showed me the another side of Brazil instead. I really missed the simplicity and cordiality of Elvio and his wife. So was I looking forward to my next destination, which was the world largest wetland, the Brazilian Pantanal. The 3 weeks stay there did touch me, I must admit. Ritas ranch is just gorgeous. I soon changed my delicately decorated and air conditioned room with the hammocks under the giant Mango trees, which enabled me not only to watch the miraculous sun downs and sun rises, but I did also enjoy at closest possible distance, the hilarious morning concert of all the hundreds of birds species, for which the region is well known. I did find the most appropriate comments on the birds of the Pantanal with the pictures of Manoel de Barros: to find the blue I use the birds ! Everyday I made new discoveries in this environment with bustling wildlife and vegetation. I rode with the peões, the Brazilian cowboys who´s tough job I became to respect. I loved to ride after the calves to help to bring em in for treatment. My biggest success was when Tião said "today you really did gallop a lot". I went with Rita and Negão on a trail to the Rio Negro for a week. On a neighboring fazenda I was introduced to an educational project called "escola pantaneira" aimed to grant basic education to the children of the peões, who otherwise and mainly because of the distances and climatic conditions of the Pantanal, would have difficulties to go to school at all. Rita was an excellent host, explaining this unique environment, pampered me, while I enjoyed life in the saddle and my personal freedom on this beautiful spot called Pantanal. Peter rode with me and my friend on the last part of the trail. Like in São Joaquim did I enjoy his esprit and charm and first of all, his deep knowledge of Brazil and many other issues. I will never forget when we rode together through the night. Suddenly we were embedded in a sea of stars, cormorants flying in front of us as being on a string and far ahead the light of the Barra guiding us home. Thanks Peter for everything, your way, your openness and human warmth, the super organization of this unique travel adventure. I want to come back. Billie GretherBasle (Switzerland)
  • Billie Grether driving the cattle with Elvio
  • Riding through the São Joaquim National Park
  • Billie Grether with friend and pantaneiro
  • Refreshing and talking with the pantaneiros
  • Break while observing the Pantanal wildlife
  • It took a whole night to fly from Manaus to Florianópolis, where João – Elvio’s son – was waiting for us. The drive with an ancient pick-up truck took 3.5 hours from the beautiful Island of Santa Catarina to Urubici, a tiny mountain town of 2,000 inhabitants. The contrast between tourist-filled beach city Florianópolis and rural Urubici is striking, and our first thought was "what are we doing here!". Peter came to the Urubici Park Hotel, welcomed us and explained the program. Typically, Peter prefers a group of 4-6 persons, but now it was only us. We were invited to Elvio’s – a gaucho and our riding guide – house for a simple home-cooked lunch with Elvio’s wife Rosi, daughter Rosanna, son João and his wife and a baby, and a German couple who just finished their one-week riding vacation. We felt immediately welcomed, and the feeling being alone in the middle-of-nowhere disappeared for a whole vacation. Clothing
    Since this was our first riding vacation we had not been quite sure what to pack. No problem. Even though it was Good Friday, a shop selling riding gears opened just for us. We bought waterproof leather boots, hats, vests, and a knife. The prices were very reasonable, so there really is no need to carry everything from home. The boots proved to be excellent, as in many places it was muddy and wet, and cleaning the boots was much easier than cleaning our hiking boots would have been. Jeans were perfect for riding, and we preferred long-sleeved shirts to avoid scratches as the trails went through dense forests. Light wind-jackets were in the saddle-bag, but we did not use them. The new vests we used occasionally, but the temperature was 18°C-26°C, so there really was no need for warmer clothing when riding. The rain capes provided by Southern Cross kept us totally dry during the couple of rainy afternoons we had.
    After our purchases at the store, we did not need money. This was definitely all-inclusive trip. Riding
    The horses were crossbred crioulos, smallish, strong, reliable in the difficult climbs. We are both tall, but it was not a problem. We mainly do jumping at home, so long-distance riding was very different. Due to difficult, rocky and mountainous terrain, the pace was mainly walk or trot. On the plateaus, the horses and riders enjoyed cantering as well. The trails went up and down. Climbing from 900 meters to 1700 meters and down again! Every mountain felt like Mount Everest – finally reaching the top, the incredible feeling of freedom, seeing the range of mountains and valleys. It felt like we are conquering a country never explored. Occasionally we saw other ranchers and stopped to talk with them, which strengthened the feeling of being a family member and not a tourist.
    Daily ridings were from 5-7 hours, with longest day 10.5 hours. Every day we had our picnic or barbecue lunch. Lit a fire, cooked coffee, barbecued meat, had homemade cheese and took a nap. Water was no problem – there are creeks all over, and the water is drinkable. Language
    We are Finnish, but have lived over one year in Amazonas. We speak some Portuguese, but relied a lot on Peter. Language is not a problem. Even though Elvio’s family does not speak any other language than Portuguese, they are used to foreigners.
    Urubici Park Hotel was modest, yet tidy. Second night at Pousada (Inn) Caminhos da Neve. We shared a nice lodge (living room, two bed-rooms and one bathroom) together with Peter. Three nights at the Ranch Conta Dinheiro, owned by Elvio’s brother. Very modest, but cozy. All of us - Elvio, Rosi , their son, and Peter - stayed there. Five bedrooms and two bathrooms, with hot showers. The last three nights at Pousada / fazenda Dois Rios. Rogério and Salete are Elvio’s neighbors. Since Elvio and Rosi just moved to new ranch that will be renovated, they could not take us to their home. We had nice after-ride coffee there, but stayed overnight at Rogério and Salete’s where we had dinner and breakfast.
    We liked to visit ranches and pousadas, and enjoyed living like family members. The standard of this kind of lodging is not high – e.g. the nights were cold and no heating - but the warm and kind atmosphere you cannot experience in any hotel! Who is this trip for?
    In Scandinavia girls and women do horseback riding. In Brazil it seems to be much for men. The trails and riding was manly – Elvio using his machete to cut the trees to open a trail for riders, simple lunches, and sturdy horses – it was very masculine. No dressage, no fancy gears. But certainly fun!
    Riding skills are not that important, but you have to have a good balance and self-confidence. And you must be able to trust the horses. Even though the saddles are good, you’ll be suffering, if your bottom has not recent experience of riding! This was our first riding vacation but certainly not the last. The experience was not only a vacation, it was also an adventure. We saw marvelous landscape, beautiful nature, met friendly people, and best of all, we were treated like friends. Karina and Mikko KaukorantaHelsinki (Finland) & Manaus (Amazonas, Brazil)
  • The Kaukorantas together wih Elvio
  • Rest at a abandoned mountain cemetery
  • Karina and Mikko Kaukoranta
  • Creak crossing
  • Ascent up to theplateau
  • Rding through bracatinga forest
  • Our cozy chalet at the Vale do Neblina Inn
  • An early camargo café with fresh milk – better than any capuchino
  • Riding over highland pastures
  • I was on my way towards the trip of my dreams. I was going to spend one whole week on a traditional south Brazilian farm with cattle, horses, riding and nature. To live on a farm together with a family and take part of their every day life was something I was really looking forward to. I did not know really what to expect, but when I drove in on the little road far up in the hills, and for the first time saw the place, I was sure that my time here was going to be special. We went out riding every day, for many hours, in the fantastic nature in the surrounding hills. We went on places I never thought would be possible to go riding on and we even climbed mountains with the horses. It was fantastic; one of the highlights for me was to gallop on top of the mountain, which gave me a total feeling of freedom! I learned so much from the fantastic horses and off curse from my excellent guide and host Elvio. He and his wife Rosie took such good care of me during my stay, as well as all the boys staying there. We had many laughs together and this week is something I never will forget. For me it was a privilege to be able to stay on such a unique place that was not only a home but a real working farm. I wish and hope that a lot more people go and visit this fantastic place that is so far from other tourists and busy streets. You will get an experience of a lifetime! Thank you Peter for arranging my trip and thank you again Elvio, Rosie and “the boys” for opening your home to me and sharing your life. Annica Larsson Sweden
  • Annica Larsson at the Fazenda
  • Annica and Sofronites orchids on the highlands
  • Annica Larsson with Elvio
  • Who has been looking for the great freedom in the US, has never been to Brazil. After having been about 4 times on horse back trails in Arizona I wanted to experience a tropical environment. This is how we arrived at www.ridingbrazil.com with Peter and his partner Elvio, in Santa Catarina, Brazil. We were very lucky, as we have been invited to a rodeo that happened to take place in Urubici on the weekend we arrived there. The competing vaqueiros (cowboys) are to rope in cattle on a track. The lasso however may not slide down over the cattle's head but must stay fix over the cattle's horns only. A extremely difficult exercise. This colorful event with the vaqueiros concentrated and tense when their turn arrived and the locals their welcoming us with utmost kindness, made us looking forward with eager anticipation for our ride, that started early next day. We immersed nearly immediately into the green of exuberant vegetation. A steep ascent, passing by bamboo, giant ferns, araucaria pine forest and uncountable subtropical flowers and plants, lead us to a wonderful lookout. From here we overlooked a see of araucaria pine forest, high field pastures and a waterfall, where we would rest for lunch, a couple of hours later. The performance of the horses this very first day was absolutely stunning. Also, on the next day, our mounts managed masterly the uphill and downhill, and there were lots of it. Again we rode through these magnificent araucaria pine forests and other exotic trees that were heavily occupied by bromeliads and orchids. The old man´s beard trees let your imagination run loose…. What a landscape....! On the third day we horses changed. We could see that the animals were treated with care. Again the landscape changed constantly. Now we rode on hilly grasslands already on the high camps. While riding on, we met a small herd of horses that were running loose on the range. There watched and circled us curiously. A bit later we drove some cattle to a nearby fazenda. Since we still wear our hats from Arizona, we got the real cowboy feeling right here in the deep Brazilian backcountry. Suddenly we were covered in thick layers of fog which added a mysterious aspect to the overwhelming mountain panorama. We probably missed another spectacular outlook over the canyons, because of the fog, but this has been still another thrilling day. Not different were the days ahead. Again, we saw constantly changing vegetation and scenery. From to mountain tops that we had climbed with our brave horses, which seemed to have converted to goats, we head great views over the wide open lands and the untouched nature. We enjoyed every minute of this ride. We will not miss to mention the delicious meals prepared by Rosi and Salete, sweetening this holiday week for us. There was also the hospitality we experienced everywhere on the fazendas – despite our language problem. But, we had always Peter at hand who would translate for us. Both, Andrea and Myself, we had not expected that this tour would be so overwhelming. Our thanks go again to Elvio, his wife Rosi and Peter from Riding Brazil. Our best wishes to all the others. Detlef and Andrea LockOberhausen (Germany)
  • Andrea and Detlef Lock
  • The Locks at the Avencal waterfall
  • Through araukaria forests
  • Great views
  • I am not a very good rider but my wife is (Coralie Amon), so I was wondering how the horses would be and whether I could sit on them for 7 hours or not! We arrived at the airport and were greeted by Peter Rohmer with a Taxi waiting to take us to the Ranch, he spoke very good English and could speak fluent Portuguese to the local people, too. This made our communication very easy provided Peter was with us, and he spoke German to my wife when he could. The journey took around two hours to get into the countryside and gave us a chance to see the country, outside of the main towns and made us realise how beautiful and vast Brazil is. When we arrived at the Ranch of Elvio and Rosie, we were greeted very warmly and made to feel immediately welcome, we were shown our room and were given a nice snack and coffee.The next day we went riding, and the horses were smaller than we are used to in England but took my weight very well, and were a dream to handle as they seem to know what you want to do with out to much effort or control. Over the week we were there my wife and I tried different horses until by midweek I had found the perfect horse who was responsive and fast, but could still tackle the varying landscapes we rode across! The week went by so quickly and the great hospitality made us feel even more like one of the family, with the great Brazilian cooking done by Rosie, we were able to really feel how they lived as farmers, gauchos and ranchers. The landscape was beautiful, too, with challenging rides and changing scenes that would change by the hour and day. The rides were individually suited to the group Peter had with him, and would take us to areas where we had not been the previous day. We had two weeks booked for our holiday in Brazil where the second week was staying in Club Med in Salvador, but whilst I was laying by the pool in our second week I thought that I would rather be back in the saddle riding around with Peter and Elvio! So I would highly recommend this trip and it has all the genuine flavour of Brazil and is a good experience without being at all touristy. I hope to return to Brazil and do this again but next time make it at least two weeks! Best regards Yusuf M. PirgaliLondon (Great Britain)
  • Yusuf Pirgalie with his wife Coralie
  • Even while raining the trail brings a lot of fun
  • Hello Peter ......we had a fantastic holiday, it was really unique in going into the real Brazil and getting to know the people and the place. You as our guide and Elvio and Rosie as our hosts really made the holiday so Thank you very much for that and please pass on our thanks to them. We had some interesting gesticulating conversations after you went!! I think we could honestly say that it is the sort of holiday you would want to do twice, especially the canyons, that was a very special day, but the views from the top of Monte Alegre was also spectacular. Rio was a complete contrast but a wonderful city, I did not expect it to be so beautiful with stunning mountains, beaches and forrest. Annette was a great guide and we had a lot of fun with her, too. Joc and Andy StuddartWakefield (United Kingdom)
  • Joc and Andy Studdart with Elvio
  • The horses are very well trained and controlable. They have great stamina and are very sure footed, never refussing to go forward. The ride and terain was ever changing and challenging with great panoramic views. Our host and hostess were very accomodating giving us a tast of their life style which we enjoyed very much. Especially the capucino made with the freshiest of fresh milk. Each evening when we reached our destination away from home base Rosi had everything organized for us. The trip exceeded our expectations although we were not sure how we might endure all the long hours in the saddle. As it was we managed very well. Roger FraserCanada
  • For me there´s no better and more authentic way to travel than on back of a horse. You get far away from where all the other tourists go, see the nature, stay with locals - an unforgettable experience. Helena GoodwinCanada
  • My comment on the Southern Cross Ride (SJ Adventure Trail): good: service, documentation, accomodation excellent: horses, tack, meals, guide The host Elvio and his wife made the trip just wonderful. They treated us like family and made the trip. No bother at any time. Dominic Cammarata Memphis (TN, USA)
  • The guide and cook (husband/wife) were wonderful and friendly ranchers. I spent a few hours one morning learning how to make cheese with Rosie (Mrs). The horses are incredibly surefooted and strong, well trained und responsive. Also, to my relief (previously had bad experience with this in Central America), there are well fed and cared for. Elvio is a true horseman and takes pride in his land and his horses. What a wonderful representative slice of Brazil this was. Scenery, horses, food, hosts all the best! Elevations at times, due tol steepness primarily but horses were doing a good job. I never felt in danger. Sammi Flynn Washington (GA, USA)
  • Hi Peter, We had a good trip home with a fun stay at the beach hotel in Florinopolis. Thank you for all your leadership. The ride was wonderful. I am getting together the names and addresses of 4 companies for you to contact. All of them I think will be receptive to your trips. A few of the contacts I know rather well. Nancy and Bruce LegnardVolcano (CA, USA)
  • I also want to thank you again for a great time in Brazil. I (and Barbara) really enjoyed it. You handled the trip beautifully and I will tell Hidden Trails. (I will also notify Equitours and suggest they contact you.) We had fun at the beach, too, though it rained and became chilly--suntan lotion was never needed. You might want to know that the Villabella Vilaggio is a lovely hotel and they deliver a delicious (and unexpected) breakfast of fruit, bread, cheese, yoghurt, and coffee to the room each morning! I leave for California soon and I promise to take the crop and mail it for you. Let's keep in touch. Pamela Walter New York (NY, USA)
  • I also want to thank you again for a great time in Brazil. I (and Barbara) really enjoyed it. You handled the trip beautifully and I will tell Hidden Trails. (I will also notify Equitours and suggest they contact you.) We had fun at the beach, too, though it rained and became chilly--suntan lotion was never needed. You might want to know that the Villabella Vilaggio is a lovely hotel and they deliver a delicious (and unexpected) breakfast of fruit, bread, cheese, yoghurt, and coffee to the room each morning! I leave for California soon and I promise to take the crop and mail it for you. Larry Whyte
  • Larry Whyte and daughter Nina

+55 (22) 2340 1336 | +55 (22) 99992 3575 | peter@ridingbrazil.com


Rua Joaquim de Deus, 55, Praia dos Anjos, Cep 28930-000

Arraial do Cabo - Rio de Janeiro - Brazil