WHO WE ARE
Long before Ecotourism became a “buzz word” in the travel industry, Mountain Equestrian Trails was practicing it. MET was established in 1986 to provide the perfect solution for those wishing to experience the rainforest without endangering them or the people who live within them. Our gentle, well behaved horses ensure that even a novice rider will find himself so relaxed with the horse that he/she can really enjoy the scenery around him.
Our 60 miles of trails have been opened since 1986. Most of the trails utilize old logging paths that have simply been “cleaned” in order to be used. In addition, new trails were cut to connect with existing routes, opening up new areas. The trails wind through both the Mountain Pine Ridge Reserve and Slate Creek Preserve, allowing access to remote, tropical waterfalls and spectacularly formed limestone caves, some of which still contain undisturbed relics of the Maya civilization.
Our “Turf” and “Turf & Surf” Adventure tours have become increasingly popular over the last several years and are featured in the catalogues of major international equestrian tour operators such as Equitour and FITS Equestrian. Our packaged tours have appeared in TACA’s “Aboard” magazine, as well as in “Horse and Rider” magazine. The tours include 5 and 8 night packages featuring 4 days of riding to our major riding attractions as well as vehicle tours to sites throughout the Cayo District such as Xunantunich, Cahal Pech, El Pilar, Hidden Valley Falls, Rio On Pools and Rio Frio Caves in the Mountain Pine Ridge Reserve. Optional extensions are available to Tikal and to the barrier reef and cayes. We pride ourselves on giving· our guests the best individual service and providing professionally guided tours to remote locations where few others venture.
The Cantina is our focal point, acting as the bar, restaurant and leisure area. With its tall thatched roof and its open air design, the Cantina evokes a simple yet comfortable feeling. From every vantage point, magnificent panoramic views of the Slate Creek Preserve and Mountain Pine Ridge Reserve can be seen. The cuisine is varied, including Texan barbeque, Mexican, Chinese, and Belizean dishes. Wherever possible we include seasonal fruits and vegetables grown by local farmers. Home baked breads, tortillas, pastries and desserts as well as freshly squeezed juices complement the varied international menu.
The thatched-roof Spanish-style cabanas are spacious, cool and comfortable, with private baths and hot and cold water in each room. With Maya decor, romantic kerosene lighting, and a hammock in every room, the atmosphere is peaceful and relaxing.
Mountain Equestrian Trails is unquestionably Belize’s premier horseback riding center. With a strong reputation for both innovation and professionalism within the equestrian community, MET is now expanding into the wider field of adventure tourism. MET’s adventure programs feature a combination of “hard” and “soft” itineraries that range from overnight “camping” trips, to extended riding treks to the ancient citadel of Caracol.
In addition to horseback riding and expeditions, MET’s on site “stable” of activities includes float/caving trips, horse-drawn wagon rides, and birding along extensive forest trails. Environmental awareness is an integral part of any MET activity. Experienced guides familiar with the local culture, flora and fauna, are always on hand to answer your queries. In addition, MET offers individuals or groups tailor made itineraries throughout Belize as well as to Tikal in Guatemala.
We pride ourselves at MET on pre-ride orientation. Care is taken to match the rider(by obtaining height, weight, and riding experience) with the most suitable horse and tack. There is no need to worry about rain gear, water bottles, or camera bags; these are provided. During planning, we select only the most interesting routes, passing through varied ecosystems which are carefully explained by your knowledgeable guide. We will identify traditional uses of plants, visit Maya ruins: and of course enjoy the exhilarating experience of riding through a pristine environment. It is important that riders wear hiking boots, tennis shoes (with socks), or riding boots, as well as long single seamed trousers or jodhpurs. We remind clients that our half day and full day rides do include breaks for trekking, caving and swimming, and that lunch is included in all rides.
MET is located at mile 8 on the Mountain Pine Ridge Road(also known as Chiquibul) Road in Cayo district, western Belize. Turn left onto the Mountain Pine Ridge Road at Georgeville, 64 miles from Belize City. We are only one mile from the border of the Mountain Pine Ridge Reserve. Due to our elevated location, you will find the temperatures moderate and pleasant year round.
WHAT THEY SAY ABOUT MET
“Hundreds of different orchids and bromiliads come into close range as you ride the trails that constantly change from shaded jungle floors to sunlit valleys. Your horse activates clouds of butterflies as its legs brush against the undergrowth. The color palatte of these fluttering art forms is endless. Occasionally, you’ll see the magnificent iridescent-blue or the pearly-white giants of the Morpho butterfly species. Bring your camera, or you’ll surely wish you had. The scenery is postcard perfect, and you’ll certainly want a photo album record of the ride, the barbeque, and shots of yourself as an authentic cowpoke.”
TACA’s “Aboard” magazine
“Wonderful guides, great horses, beautiful sites, fabulous food, great service. Can I say more? I can’t wait to come back! Thanks!”
“After being in Belize for 6 weeks, this has been by far and away the best day. There is a magic that exists between the pine ridge and the jungle right here at MET.”
Los Angeles, California