The Best Horseback Riding in Oahu   

Hey there, fellow Oahu adventure seekers!

You know, when you plan a trip to Oahu, the first things that come to mind are stunning beaches and shopping sprees. But let me tell you – this island has so much more to offer! I’ve been exploring Oahu with my boyfriend for years now (I’m probably on a first-name basis with every beach umbrella), and we’ve discovered an amazing hidden treasure: horseback riding through enchanting ranches and trails.

Now, before you go thinking horseback riding in Hawaii can’t be true, let me give you a brief history lesson: King Kamehameha himself introduced ranches back in 1830. Since then, Hawaiian paniolos (cowboys) have played an important part in the local culture. So trust me when I say that horseback riding is as authentically Hawaiian as pineapple on pizza (just kidding).

Warning: After experiencing the best horseback riding tours in Oahu, you might find yourself trading your flip-flops for cowboy boots and saying “Aloha” to your new favorite pastime!

So saddle up folks – together we’ll leave no stone unturned as we explore the top ranches for unforgettable horseback adventures in paradise!

Horseback Ride Like an Authentic Paniolo at Gunstock Ranch

Leave the crowded city behind as you head to Oahu’s quaint North shore for the best horseback riding. Gunstock Ranch operates this tour, including a 1.5-hour trip starting from their location near Laie and Kahuku. You’ll be given well-trained horses according to your skill level, with a guide always accompanying you. 

This tour is perfect for beginners, and those looking for a secluded horse riding adventure, as the guides, take small groups at a time. The ride heads to a scenic mountain trail with ocean views and beautiful lookout points along the way, looking onto the North shore landscape. 

Enjoy the ride at a leisurely pace, and snap great pictures from the many scenic photo-ops you’ll pass on this ride, all while instructors share interesting information about the ranch’s history. 

My boyfriend and I really enjoyed this leisurely tour, and it’s a great chance to experience horseback riding in Oahu for everyone. 

  • The trail passes through open pastures and shaded forests. 
  • The guides are experienced and friendly, making the ride even more enjoyable.
  • You can purchase pictures of your trip near the tour’s end.

Kualoa Ranch – Horseback Walking Tour

A trip to Oahu’s Northeastern shore reveals lush valleys and mountains, which were the filming locations of Jurassic Park and Pearl Harbor at the Kualoa Ranch. The Ranch offers breathtaking scenery straight out of a movie (quite literally), where guests can ride their horses through well-developed trails. 

The horseback riding at Kualoa Ranch lasts 1-2 hours as you lead your horses deeper into the valley at a relaxed walking pace. In addition, expert horse wranglers accompany you on the ride, which leads to the Ka’a’awa Valley, so even beginners and younger children can take this trip. 

Riders can also enjoy unmatched views of the Jurassic Valley, travel through forests, pass by World War II bunkers, and go through the picture-perfect North shore on this incredible trip.

We highly recommend Kualoa Ranch to anyone looking for a scenic riding route, as they provide the best horseback riding in Oahu. Here’s why you’ll agree:

  • The guides are excellent and teach first-timers how to ride in just one trip. 
  • The Kualoa Ranch has lots of cattle, farm animals, and large stables which guests can explore. 
  • Your guide shares the history of the Kualoa Ranch and its area on the ride. 

Horseback Trail Ride at North Shore Stables

Horseback riding in Hawaii is incomplete without riding on the beach, which is what the North Shore Stables in Waialua offer from their beachside ranch. Guests can enjoy a guided horseback ride through a working farm and on an oceanfront trail that gives unmatched views of the Pacific Ocean. 

The ocean trail has beautiful tropical plants along the way, and the scenery, once you arrive at the beach, is incredible, especially in the afternoon with the sun glimmering on the shore. 

The North Shore Stables have terrific instructors who match riders to well-trained horses for the trip and maintain your safety throughout the ride. The riding is also great for younger children, as they offer a shorter trip for kids ten years and older.  

We had a fun time at these stables and recommended them to people looking for a family-friendly ranch, as they offer the best horseback riding in Oahu. 

  • If you have prior riding skills, the instructors teach you new tricks on the horses. 
  • The guides snap photos of you on the trail’s many photo-ops.
  • The ranch also offers ATV tours and other exciting activities. 

Hawaii Polo Club Oceanfront Trail Rides

The North shore’s western edge near Haleiwa is home to the Hawaii Polo Club, which has gorgeous oceanfront trails providing views of the Pacific Ocean. The Club hosts polo matches, weddings, riding lessons, and terrific horseback riding trails on its grounds, which guests can enjoy through multiple tours. 

Seasoned riders will love this experience, as the Club provides professional polo horses for riding their trails, making the journey pretty thrilling. You’ll ride on a stunning oceanfront trail overlooking the beach and enjoy unmatched views of the Waialua shores.

These trails are also great for those looking for seclusion, as only a few riders go out at once under the supervision of an experienced guide. 

My boyfriend and I were pleasantly surprised by the quality of horses and trails here, as the Polo Club undoubtedly has the best horseback riding in Oahu.

  • They also have sunshine and sunset rides on the beach.
  • Guests can take a polo training session with the Club’s instructors. 
  • You can also book a private ride for couples, singles, and small groups.

Turtle Bay Resort Horseback Ride

You’ll find Oahu’s only resort stables at the Turtle Bay Resort, which spreads for 850 acres on the North shore. Turtle Bay has routes for riding inside their grounds, with nearly 12 miles of oceanfront and seaside trails. In addition, the trails are open to guests of the resort and non-guests on a reservation basis. 

Multiple riding tours are going on throughout the day at the resort, with the 45-minute pony ride for adults and children being the most popular. The tour includes trekking along trails tucked within the huge resort, past the area’s spectacular beaches, tropical forests, and sandy coastline.

The resort also offers group trail rides, evening rides, sunset jaunts, and private outings on their beautiful horses, which riders can pick from the on-ground stables before the ride. 

While staying at the Turtle Bay Resort, we loved riding on their well-maintained courses, which have the best horseback riding in Oahu. Here’s why you’ll agree:

  • Tours include visits to the filming locations of LOST and Pirates of the Caribbean.
  • The horse riding in Turtle Bay is perfect for families with young children.
  • The guides are amazing and offer great private riding lessons.

Private Sweetheart Horseback Ride

Another great trip arranged by the Gunstock Ranch, the Sweetheart Horseback Ride is a perfect activity for couples on the North Shore looking for a romantic getaway. The trip lasts two hours, and couples ride their horses at a leisurely pace to a secluded destination alongside a private guide. 

The ride leads to a beautiful hill on the North Shore, where couples can enjoy stunning landscape views. After settling in, you’ll enjoy a picnic lunch arranged by the tour, including homemade sandwiches, fresh fruit, and a bottle of sparkling cider. 

So if you’re celebrating a relationship milestone or planning to propose, don’t miss this horseback ride, which is one of the best in Oahu. 

  • Aside from couples, the ride is great for small groups as well.
  • The guides are terrific and make great conversation on the ride.
  • They provide trail horses that are calm and ideal for strolling.

Winding Up The Best Horseback Riding in Oahu

Oahu horseback riding tours offer unforgettable experiences. Hawaii’s rich ranching legacy since the 1800s positions it as a prime horseback riding destination. While older ranches exist on the Big Island and Maui, Oahu boasts unique ranching styles and trails.

Horse riding Oahu beaches provides mesmerizing vistas and verdant valley panoramas. Gunsmoke Ranch on the North Shore offers an authentic Oahu equestrian experience. For beachside views during your ride, consider North Shore Stables or Hawaii Polo Club.

Kualoa Ranch lets riders explore the famed Jurassic Park Valley. Horse ranches in Oahu like this ensure a memorable ride. From horseback riding in Waikiki to north shore Oahu horseback adventures, there’s something for everyone. Honolulu horseback riding, tropical trail rides in Oahu, and sunset horseback riding are just a few highlights. Dive into the best equestrian spots Oahu offers and experience the thrill of island horse rides Oahu.

Oahu’s Top Horseback Riding Tours

Gunstock RanchBeachside ranch offering guided horseback rides through farm and oceanfront trails.Small group tours. History of the ranch shared. Purchase photos of your trip.
Kualoa Ranch – Horseback Walking Tour1-2 hour trip leading to the Ka’a’awa Valley. Rides through Jurassic Valley and WW2 bunkers.Expert horse wranglers. Teach first-timers to ride. Guests can explore large stables.
North Shore StablesOffers sunshine and sunset rides. Polo training sessions are available. Private rides for couples and groups.Good for children. Guides take photos. Offers ATV tours and more.
Hawaii Polo Club Oceanfront Trail RidesProfessional polo horses for thrilling rides on oceanfront trails.Resort stables with 12 miles of oceanfront and seaside trails. Various riding tours are available.
Turtle Bay Resort Horseback RideBeachside ranch offers guided horseback rides through farm and oceanfront trails.Visits to film locations. Great for families. Offers private riding lessons.
Private Sweetheart Horseback Ride by Gunstock Ranch2-hour romantic trip leading to a beautiful hill on North Shore with picnic lunch.Great for couples and small groups. Friendly guides. Calm trail horses provided.



How much does it cost to go horseback riding in Honolulu, Hawaii?

Horseback riding tours in Honolulu cost between $80-$150, depending on your trip’s duration, the trail’s length and location, and the facilities included in each trip.

Can you go horseback riding on the beach in Hawaii?

Although it’s not legal to ride horses on the sand and beaches in Hawaii, you can take horseback riding tours from ranches on each island, which travel on oceanside trails. 

What is the best time to go horseback riding?

If your trip is in the Fall season, you’ll enjoy the best horseback riding from trail rides., as horses are spirited on them and get very energetic. However, riding horses in Hawaii is ideal year-round, as ranch horses are well-trained and calm on trails.

What can I expect from an Oahu horseback riding tour?

You can expect a unique and unforgettable adventure on an Oahu horseback riding tour. Tour operators at places like Gunstock Ranch provide well-trained horses for both beginners and experienced riders, ensuring safety while allowing visitors to experience the scenic beauty of the Hawaiian Islands. The tours often cover a range of terrains, including open pastures, mountain trails, valleys, and even beachside rides.

How suitable is a sunset ride for the whole family at Kualoa Ranch?

A sunset ride at Kualoa Ranch is definitely suitable for the whole family—including young children—who are keen on pony rides or horseback rides. As you stroll leisurely across notable landscapes such as those filmed in Jurassic Park surrounded by incredible scenic beauty under the guidance of seasoned professionals, it’s indeed a worthwhile way to create beautiful memories with your loved ones.

What safety tips should one keep in mind during trail rides on working ranches in Oahu?

Important safety tips for trail rides include wearing closed-toe shoes as they offer protection against any injuries; it’s also essential to follow directions provided by tour operators. Remember that listening to your guides who are experienced riders will make sure everyone has not just fun but also maintains their well-being throughout this riding venture in working ranches spanning across islands like Gunstock or Kualoa Ranch.

Can you have an authentic Hawaiian cowboy experience through Horseback Tours in Oahu?

Yes! Partaking in horseback tours offered by local businesses around various locations such as Gunstock Ranch comes with learning about rich histories behind these destinations leading back into times when ‘Paniolos,’ or Hawaiian cowboys roamed these lands freely; hence providing knowledge along with distinctive firsthand experiences fused together forming true essence uncovered only through once-in-a-lifetime opportunities presented during horseback tours.

Last Updated on August 13, 2023 by Brigitte