Explore London on horseback

Being one of the world's biggest cities, London has something of a reputation for its traffic, with millions of cars whizzing round the streets of the capital each day.

However, if you want to slow things down a notch and get a sense for what things may have been like before the invention of the automobile, then horse riding is a great option.

Not only is this a wonderful way to explore the city's highlights, it's also a terrific choice for those who like to get active and do a bit of exercise, as even though the horse will be doing all the working, riding does require some effort.

A great place to do this is in Hyde Park, which sits in the heart of London and is flanked by major landmarks like Marble Arch and Kensington Palace.

Hyde Park Stables offers horse riding lessons as well is more informal options for those who simply fancy taking a stroll through the park on horseback, and have horses and ponies to suit riders of all ability levels.

There are five miles of bridleways to explore, while the stables also offer two outdoor riding arenas where lessons in dressage and other equestrian events are given.

So, whether you fancy yourself as the next Zara Phillips or just want to get away from all the cars and relive the tranquillity of days gone by, this is a great way to get more out of a visit to London.

There are, of course, plenty of other stables to be found in the city, with Frith Manor Stables in north London and Wimbledon Village Stables in the south-west of the capital just two of the many options to choose from.

Most of these equestrian centres will offer lessons as well as guided rides, so you won't have to worry about getting lost.

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