Equinostrum is the name of Faro’s new equestrian centre, which boasts six hectares of indigenous fauna, located in the Ria Formosa natural park and which allows visitors to practice hippotherapy and bird watching, among other activities.
The new equestrian and leisure centre in Faro is located at the entrance to the city, at the extreme northern end of the Ria Formosa Natural Park, with access to Ludo and Pontal. According to the owners, it is unique to the Algarve and has had approval for horse riding from Portugal’s Sports Institute.
The project made use of a ruin with a circular structure, which had been abandoned near the railway line for many years, in the area of the future Riverside Park of the region’s capital.
“We knew that in the original project of the Riverside Park there was approval for a riding centre, so we contacted the owners and reached an agreement,” Júlio Coutinho, one of Equinostrum’s directors told Lusa News Agency last week.
Aside from offering all of the necessary conditions for horse riding, with a horse riding school and stables for 32 horses, inside the club, with access and equipment for people who have reduced mobility, there will also be hippotherapy sessions for the physically and or mentally disabled.
The site also has areas for the practice of other activities such as archery, a bar with esplanades and rooms for yoga or massages.
“Equinostrum was created as an equestrian club, but it is not limited to equestrian activities, we have the space and conditions to offer other leisure and cultural activities,” said Mr. Coutinho.
The possibility of crossing the Algarve’s countryside on horseback is also on Equinostrum’s agenda of future events.
The centre has associated itself with the Via Algarviana/ The Algarve Way, and will promote rides of “one or more days” for riders to discover “the Algarve’s natural charms,” said Mr. Coutinho.
More than one million euros has been invested in the project, which received around €700,000 of European funding.
Even so, more than a decade passed before “the dream came true.”
According to Mr. Coutinho, many things have happened over the years “from ridiculous opinions, long delays and a lack of communication between the various entities involved,” but he never gave up on the project.