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From Tragedy to Triumph: The Enchanting Journey of Ride Egypt – A Tale of Resilience, Ancient Marvels, and Equine Adventures

Like all great fairy tales, the inspiring story of Ride Egypt has elements of the tragedy of Cleopatra, and more twists than the River Nile.

The journey undertaken by Ride Egypt founder Emma Jane Levin, from a New Forest stable to the Valley of the Kings, has been a ten-year odyssey and is the inspiration for her new Story Of Ride Egypt Itinerary. The holiday blends the underwater wonders of the Red Sea coast with the ancient marvels of Luxor. On horseback, guests are invited to discover the natural and historical treasures of Egypt while tracing the Story of Ride Egypt.

As a girl, Emma fell in love with horses at the New Forest stable where she worked in return for free rides. But it was years later, following a break up with a boyfriend in London, that Emma booked  an all-inclusive beach holiday in Sharm El Sheikh.

‘I wasn’t in the mood to sit on a beach’, said Emma. ‘I stumbled upon a local stable and was introduced to Belal, a majestic black stallion that reignited my love for horses.’

Fast forward two years and Emma returned to the stable in the Bedouin village of Dahab and was shocked to see Belal and the other horses being used for budget beach rides. She immediately negotiated a deal with nearby hotels to offer their guests rides for quadruple the beach ride fee. Overnight this improved the horses’ welfare and Ride Egypt was born.

Despite facing an airport bombing, being defrauded by a business partner and thereby losing her stable and horses Emma still managed to retain the name Ride Egypt. Undeterred, she reunited with her beloved stallion at the original stable in Dahab, where Ride Egypt flourished and eventually relocated to Luxor near the Valley of the Kings.

Guests of Ride Egypt now have the chance to share in Emma’s extraordinary personal voyage. Their journey starts at the beginning, in Dahab where Ride Egypt was conceived. This charming fishing village is on the shoreline of the Red Sea and in the lee of mountains crowned by Mount Sinai.

From Dahab there is a ride to the Red Sea’s famous Blue Hole where there’s the opportunity to explore one of the most spectacular dive spots in the world. A second ride transports guests through the scenic Wadi Qnai, a picturesque valley sculpted not by pharaohs but by the elemental architects of time, wind and water.

A short domestic flight with stunning views of the coastline delivers guests to Hurghada, and a swim with horses in the crystal-clear sea. For guests this is one of the most highly anticipated elements of the trail, and the horses love the cool waters as their tails stream behind them like banners in the desert wind.

A beachside lunch precedes a desert and mountain trail that traverses the rugged terrain of the Eastern Desert. There are panoramic views of the coastline and to distant mountains whose highest summit, so legend has it, was first climbed by a Bedouin woman several centuries ago. In the waters of Hurghada guests can swim with wild dolphins and explore snorkelling sites to witness the underwater beauty around the reefs here.

The final destination of The Story of Ride Egypt is Luxor, where on horseback or on foot guests can blend sightseeing with riding as they explore Egyptian wonders including Karnak Temple and the Valley of the Kings.

Luxor is where Ride Egypt’s guests complete their unforgettable eight-day odyssey, in a thriving stable that is rooted in self-sufficiency and whose pioneering founder has a profound appreciation for Egyptian culture and history. Their journey has taken them from the colour and beauty of the Red Sea coast to the wonders of Luxor.

Guests of Ride Egypt are matched with horses that suit their ability; indeed one of Emma’s first questions to guests is, ‘How much chilli do you want with your horse?’

Emma said, ‘We get a sixth sense when listening to guests as to what horses would suit them. We always have enough horses and guides to be able to separate guests or smaller groups if needed so everyone can enjoy their own paces.’ 

Asked for advice on undertaking life’s journeys and achieving one’s goals, Emma said, “I would urge people to embrace challenges with courage and resilience – it takes bravery and guts, and a lot of work to achieve your goals. Trust your instincts, prioritise integrity in all endeavours, and cultivate meaningful connections. If you remember that setbacks are opportunities for growth, your passion will sustain you through the toughest times.”

Luxor marks the conclusion of this remarkable journey, reminiscent of the finest fairy tales, where an equine queen finds her place among the pharaohs.