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Wild Coast Horses

Fact File

  • Day to day activities: You will be involved with the everyday running of the rehab and beach trail centre. The programme will involve the feeding and grooming of the horses, exercise, training, examining horses, help exercising and schooling of the horses.
  • Duration of the project: 2 weeks and longer
  • Cost: From R603 (£43) per day
  • What’s included: Accommodation, 3 meals a day, snacks and transport to and from the different working venues. Airport pickup and return transfer from East London Airport (ELS).
  • What’s excluded:Flights, visas (if necessary) and insurance.
  • Accommodation: Shared volunteer accommodation.
  • Requirements: Love for horses and outdoors.
  • Minimum Age: 18 years
  • Working Hours: Flexible, usually from 7am till 3/4pm.
  • Nearest town: Nearest town 7km
  • Guaranteed: Having the time of your life!
  • Overview
  • Fees & Dates
  • FAQ
  • Gallery

Overview of the Project

You’ll have the amazing opportunity to experience the wonderful world of horse rehabilitation on South Africa's beautiful wild coast. You will be involved with the everyday running of the rehab and beach trail centre. The programme will involve the feeding and grooming of the horses, exercise, training, examining horses, helping with exercising and schooling of the horses. If you have experience with your horses there is always a youngster to work on or an oldie that needs a refresher course. For the absolute beginner, we will teach you a basic horse care management and even though you perhaps have never ridden a horse before our horses are brilliant. The project has been running for 10 years under the careful dedication of the Dickerson Family. Anyone coming to the rehab centre will get the opportunity to ride on our lovely beaches and accompany our trails on our assortment of horses from a Transkei pony to a warm blood. Between the rehab centre and the trails there are 41 horses to be cared for.

You will also do 2-day trail along the Wild Coast on the last weekend. This trail will be a combination of beach and bush riding and gives you the chance to really experience the spectacular coastline of the Wild Coast and experience one last exhilarating horse ride.

One of the most important projects they worked on, during the last 10 years, was to be involved with the European Union. They were selected as the service provider to go into the rural areas in the Transkei, and teach the local horse owners basic horse care management, and to then have the horse trail guides work with them on their trails. This was to try and improve both horses and guides for the Amadiba and Amapondo horse trails.


It is situated 35km from East London in the hart of the Wild coast.


Your task will include the following:

  • Feeding farm and trail horses
  • Mixing feed for farm and trail horses
  • Grooming, lunging, exercising and schooling work with the horses
  • Checking the horses, ensuring that there are no problems
  • Checking water troughs, ensuring that they are clean and full Go to see the beautiful scenery of the Kei Cuttings and meet some of the emerging farmers
  • Beach riding trails

Optional activities:

Additional activities to do during your stay. Some of these at your own expense:

  • Learn to surf
  • Go on a trip to the Transkei
  • Meet a ‘sangoma’
  • Visit the Inkwenkwezi Private Game Reserve virtually next door to them, where you can interact with elephants and lion cubs
  • Strolling along the beach & forest
  • Loads of free time to sunbathe, swim and play volley ball
  • Quad bike around the farm
  • Visit local restaurants
  • Play pool & drinks at the local backpackers
  • Fishing
  • Canoeing
  • 20km of unspoilt beach and rocky shores for hikes, beach volleyball and games
  • River cruises
  • Whale watching and coastal excursions
  • Mountain bike rides and giant sand dune trips
  • There are many other activities available.

Optional programs which can be arranged during your the stay

  • Spend some time with the local vet.
  • Go fishing for the Aquarium
  • Join a tomato farm for a few days
  • Or a very large chicken farm.


The project starts every 2 weeks.

2009 starting dates:
Jan 12, Jan 26, Feb 9, Feb 23, Mar 9, Mar 23, Apr 6, Apr 20, May 4, May 18, Jun 1, Jun 15,
Jun 29, Jul 13, Jul 27, Aug 10, Aug 24, Sep 7, Sep 21, Oct 5, Oct 19, Nov 2, Nov 16, Nov 30,
Dec 14, Dec 28.

2010 start dates:
Jan 11, Jan 25, Feb 8, Feb 22, Mar 8, Mar 22, Apr 5, Apr 19, May 3, May 17, May 31, Jun 14,
Jun 28, Jul 12, Jul 26, Aug 9, Aug 23, Sep 6, Sep 20, Oct 4, Oct 18, Nov 1, Nov 15, Nov 29,
Dec 13, Dec 27.


Weeks Total fee Fee per week Fee per day
2 weeks R8,500 £607 R4,250 £304 R607 £43
4 weeks R16,900 £1,207 R4,225 £302 R604 £43
6 weeks R25,350 £1,811 R4,225 £302 R604 £43
Additional weeks R4,225 £302  

It is recommended that you stay for 4 weeks or longer.

Payments must be made in Rands. Pounds are for illustrative only and based on R14 /£1.

What is included in the fee?

  • Accommodation
  • All meals
  • All airport transfers to and from East London Airport (ELS)
  • Excursions listed above
  • Work experience at the rehabilitation centre
  • 2 Day Wild Coast Horse Trail
  • Full support and assistance from your co-ordinator throughout your stay in South Africa

What is excluded from the fee?

  • Telephone, email and internet
  • Flights, Visas, Medical and travel insurance
  • Excess baggage
  • Personal activities
  • Soft drinks, spirits and wines

Volunteers will be accommodated at the Thornvalley Cottage which has TV, washing machine, stove, microwave and fridge. There is also a swimming pool, braai area and a tennis court.


Breakfast, lunch, and dinner are included. Saturday is usually a South African braai "BBQ" and a few drinks and Sunday is usually a typical English Roast.

Volunteering work hours

Flexible, but summers will usually start at 6:30am with the mixing of feed for the horse. Check water troughs. Visually check the horses for any problems, lunging, exercise and schooling work. There are rides in the morning and afternoon but there is time during the day for relaxation.

Telecommunication and medical facilities

There is email facilities available and cell phone reception. A doctor is only 10km from the project.


Qualification and Skills

Minimum age of 18 years.
Love for horse and animals.
Loving the outdoors and have a sense of adventure.

Extra money

This depends on your spending habits and additional tours and activities. South Africa is not an expensive destination. 20 pounds (R300) a week would cover more than the basics.

Immunization & Vaccination

This is a malaria free area. Volunteers can have rabies and anti-tetanus injections should they wish. It is best to contact your local physician before you leave your country.


Temperatures during the year:

Warm sunny summers and cold winters cold.

Summer (Des, Jan and Feb): 17 - 32 ˚ Celsius
Autumn (Mar, April and May): 13 - 30 ˚ Celsius
Winter (June, July and Aug): 10 - 26 ˚ Celsius
Spring (Sep, Oct and Nov): 13 - 30 ˚ Celsius


Bring some old clothing for working with the horse. A rain jacket and warm clothes for evenings


It can get very cold in the evenings during the African winter, so please bring a warm jacket and long trousers. Please be aware that your clothes are going to get dirty!

  • Powerful flashlight
  • Sunglasses
  • Passport, Visas and Medical & Travel Insurance documents
  • A willingness- to- learn- and- participate attitude
  • A sleeping bag and pillow
  • Natural-coloured/camouflage clothing and hat
  • Comfortable walking shoes
  • Raincoat
  • Thick socks
  • Personal toiletries and towels
  • Sunscreen lotion
  • Insect repellent
  • Malaria tablets (only if visiting a malaria-risk area)
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