About Us

Savannah Horse Trails, in the Waterberg Mountains of South Africa, offers riding safaris amongst African wildlife in a scenically diverse landscape of open savannah plains, river valleys and rocky escarpments with panoramic views.

The safaris aim to please riders with a combination of exhilarating riding at different paces; I also cater for beginners and novice riders but on different rides; responsive, happy and healthy horses; beautiful wilderness scenery and informative guiding.

Trails are led personally by Carla Lucassen, the owner of Savannah, who is an experienced equestrian and licensed field guide knowledgeable on the local ecology. The riding experience is tailor-made to the interests and abilities of the group.

Traversing rights on adjacent private game reserves allow guests to explore more than 3000 hectares of bushveld; tracking and spotting game, observing the smaller creatures and enjoying the abundance of birdlife offered by the different habitats. Sightings of eagle species such as Verreaux’s, Martial, African Hawk, Wahlberg’s and Black-chested snake eagle as well as Cape vulture are common. Special sightings include Blue crane, Secretary bird and Stanley’s bustard.

On horseback, riders approach wildlife in a non-threatening manner and enjoy relaxed sightings of kudu, reedbuck, klipspringer, bushbuck, duiker, warthog, jackal, baboon, zebra, eland, impala, giraffe, waterbuck, red hartebeest and blue wildebeest.

Mountain areas, river valleys and dense bush are explored at a leisurely pace while sandy tracks in the open grasslands allow riders to safely move on at a trot or canter. Riding style is English (as opposed to Western) and trail saddles are used for the comfort of both horse and rider. Detailed attention is paid to the health, care and schooling of the horses, to the safety of both horse and rider, and to the quality and care of the tack.

There is a range of self-catering and fully-catered accommodation options available close to Savannah and on the property itself, and packages of 1 to 5 nights can be designed for prospective guests. By request, the packages can include game drives, bush walks, mountain biking trails, and visits to cheetah breeding centres or to Marakele or Pilanesberg National Parks.

Carla Lucassen moved to South Africa from her native Holland in 2006 to work in tourism. Fluent in English, French, and German, Carla has a lifetime of equestrian experience and has competed in dressage and show jumping on her own horses. In 2009, she fulfilled her dream of running her own horse trail operation in Africa by opening Savannah Horse Trails.