Healthy horses in Mahabaleshwar Polo Grounds

It is a common sight in most tourist destinations to see horse ride being offered to tourists. Horse care takers offer short ride to tourists for few hundred rupees. But what I’d seen in most places is that horses are often very skinny and weak. But in Mahabaleshwar, I noticed that horses are very clean and healthy.
At some viewpoints they charge Rs 100 for a 300 meter ride. In Polo ground, rates are higher at Rs 200 per round, but distance covered is bigger. As soon as you enter Polo ground, you will be surrounded by horses and their caretakers and they won’t budge if you say you’re not interested. Depending on your comfort level or request, rider can ride with you (sitting behind you) or walk the horse while you ride, or let you ride completely while he follows in another horse next to you.

In a previous session I was told that kicking the horse lightly on its stomach either on left side or right side with our legs is the way to tell it which direction to turn. But here my jockey told me that is not the approach. He suggested I use the rope to control the direction or to make it stop.
Horses here are well fed and maintained. I am told they spend Rs 100 a day on their cleaning alone.  Some more photos for you.

Above: Vast Polo ground in Mahabaleshwar

7 comments:

  1. COOL!!!
    I am not that courageous to sit on them. :P

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  2. On a sarcastic note "Hope the horse named Salman isnt drunk and hopefully wont mow people down" ,reminds me of seeing these folks years ago

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  3. @indrani: They are not dangerous, unless you do something stupid to scare them. Do try.

    @The Wild: Hopefully :)

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  4. Fab! Reminds me of my race course days - when I would go with my nanaji to watch some of the finest horse races, and a few of my horse riding practices! :-) super looking animals...

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