Former rocky and rugged region with recognizable highlander style is becoming known as one of extremely attractive tourist parts of central Dalmatia. Of course, it is Dalmatian Zagora. Apart from developing theme roads, cyclotourism, eco-ethno villages, recently in places of Dalmatian Zagora, equestrian tourism has been developing. Namely, Sinj town and Cetina region have bred and trained horses since olden times. The proof is world-famous Sinj Alka which has been held for over three centuries. Apart from this, Sinj is a host to many national and international gallop and steeplechase tournaments. Equestrian tourism is becoming strong in Trilj and Vrlika as well, while in Dugopolje sports tourism in form of marathon and football tournaments is being developed.
Development of equestrian sport is linked to year 1979, when Sinj’s hippodrome was opened, for equestrian sports tournament. This is the second largest hippodrome in Croatia, right after the one in Zagreb.
Equestrian club Alkar was founded in 1968, and from this club a series of top riders and state representatives in horse-riding have emerged. There are several smaller private stables on Sinj area, where some of the finest and most awarded horses are bred. On wider Sinj area there are four equestrian clubs – already mentioned Alkar, Alamo, Mustang and St. Mihovil. Each of them, apart from horse-riding school, offers services of therapeutic riding for disabled and mentally challenged persons. Special roads for development of equestrian tourism are also being arranged.
Another place famous for its natural beauties. Experience Vrlika through terrain horse-riding along rocks of Svilaja mountain and the surroundings. Apart from sport and recreational riding, visitors are also offered horse-riding school and horse-riding for beginners with a guide. For disabled or mentally challenged persons therapeutic horse-riding is organized.
There are stables and equestrian clubs in Trilj as well, which organize horse-riding schools for beginners and preparations for competitions for professionals. Equestrian club St. Mihovil in Košute on Drinići part has in its offer therapeutic, recreational, steeplechase and dressage riding, and also horse-riding school. Terrain horse-riding lasts for one our through six or seven days of riding tournaments. It takes place on the edges of Sinj field, under Kamešnica mountain and on the area from spring of the Cetina river to Vrlika. This project is attracting all the more tourists. Several tourist agencies on Trilj area organize interesting programmes of equestrian tourism.
Apart from this, there is also horse-riding tour Trilj, which starts at Galop stables – near St. Mihovil hotel. Two hours of riding along calm flow of Cetina offers riders an unforgettable experience. All the necessary equipment is provided by Galop stables. There are 18 horses in Galop stables, and apart from horse-riding tour it also organizes riding for beginners and horse-riding school.
There is an ideal place for all nature and animal lovers – rural household Grabovac, located in Gornji Proložac, near Imotski. Beginners and recreationists are offered horse-riding that brings an incredible experience, after which you can enjoy in homemade gastro specialties of Imotski region. With all this, near Imotski, there is a ranch in Lelasi village on 2,5 hectares that also has equestrian tourism in its offer.
Since Dalmatian Zagora is still unexplored natural area, it offers many possibilities for development of new types of tourism, like equestrian. The main intention is to have equestrian tourism throughout the year, in which tourists and locals can enjoy together.
Photo: archive TB, HC Sveti Mihovil