The Best Spots For Horseback Riding In Illinois

Horseback trail riding | © Virginia State Parks staff/WikiCommons
Horseback trail riding | © Virginia State Parks staff/WikiCommons
Photo of Elizabeth Newhart
9 February 2017

The Chicagoland suburbs are full of family farms and welcoming stables that offer horseback riding for both leisure and competition year-round. Get out of the hustle and bustle of the city for a relaxing trail ride this fall and bring along the kids for pony rides. You can also start your training with private lessons and seasonal camps.

Palos Hills Riding Stables

Also known as the New Traditions Riding Academy, the stables in suburban Palos Hills are gearing up for the winter season in a big way. Come to their annual Holiday Jingle Horse Show or sign up for a holiday camp. You can take lessons with them up to three times per week or participate in their temporary horse leasing program, which is a good trial run if you’re thinking of buying your own horse. But if you’re less experienced, consider hosting your event at the stables. They welcome birthdays, girl/boy scout troops, and even weddings. Their website links to the American Saddlebred video below to inspire new riders, as they are always encouraging people to become involved with their horseback riding passion.

Palos Hills Riding Stables, 10101 S Kean Ave, Palos Hills, IL, USA, +1 708 598 7718

Glen Grove Equestrian Center

At Glen Grove, they provide basic training for all riding experience levels. You can start taking lessons as young as seven, but instruction for beginners is not confined to kids. According to their website, they train ‘hunters and jumpers, as well as equitation and lower level dressage.’ Lessons can be private or grouped with other riders, and small children can come for pony rides on the weekends. Their location in suburban Morton Grove makes it just a quick trip northwest of the city, perfect for an escape to nature.

Glen Grove Equestrian Center, 9453 Harms Rd, Morton Grove, IL, USA, +1 847 966 8032

Double J Riding Club

The founder of Double J started her center in 1999 to create a family-friendly space that encouraged every rider to develop their passion. They offer lessons, classes, seasonal camps, and private events of all kinds. Try their new Equestrian Yoga class that teaches the practice of yoga while on horseback, strengthening the spiritual connection between horse and rider. They also have winter horse camps happening throughout December and January that include a full lesson, grooming, barn safety, horse crafts, and games. It’s an excellent present for any horse lover between the ages of five and 15.

Double J Riding Club, 10545 74th St, Countryside, IL, USA, +1 708 528 4674

Competitive horseback riding, courtesy of WikiCommons

Competitive horseback riding | © Nevit Dilmen/WikiCommons

Forest View Farms

Forest View Farms has been in the horse business since the 1950s, and it shows. They commit to full-service fun for the entire family, including lessons, camps, pony rides, trail rides, hayrides, sleigh rides, petting farms, festivals, and more. You can rent ponies, farm animals, and even horse-drawn carriages from them for your next event, and they’re always happy to help. They also have several horses and ponies for sale, if you’re ever in the market to buy.

Forest View Farms, 16717 Lockwood Ave, Tinley Park, IL, USA, +1 708 560 0306

Sarah’s Pony Rides and Trail Rides

Sarah’s offers a relaxed ride for those less experienced. Book a spot on one of their trail rides and be led on a three-hour journey through the forest. They have access to more than 25 miles of trails, making it an ideal location to get your riding fix year-round. You can come on your own, with your family and friends, or even schedule your next event there. Their ponies are perfect for kids, and they will even bring the animals to you, within 50 miles of their stables. It’s promised to be a pony party your child never forgets.

Sarah’s Pony Rides and Trail Rides, 8220 S Kean Ave, Willow Springs, IL, USA, +1 630 802 1316