Aille Cross Equestrian Centre

Your host at Aille Cross is the legendary Irish horseman, Willie Leahy, who is known throughout the world for his famous Connemara and Coast trails.

This superb riding holiday takes place from October to April amidst some of the most beautiful countryside that County Galway is famous for. It is a land of rolling hills and green fields, divided by a latticework of stone walls and quiet country roads. It is a land rich in folklore, legend and archaeological treasures all waiting to be explored on the back of an Irish hunter or a pure-bred Connemara pony.

The varied terrain includes the Slieve Aughty mountains and large tracts of woodland. On the trail there are opportunities to jump a large variety of natural obstacles, hedges, ditches and of course the walls for which County Galway is famous. All of these can be avoided if you would rather not jump.
We would be delighted to custom design a program for you that includes as much or as little jumping and instruction as you like.

This holiday provides riding and jumping at a pace that can be varied to suit riders of different abilities.

One of the highlights for more advanced riders and for those wanting to improve their jumping skills is the Dartfield event course. The course was professionally designed to accommodate riders and horses of all levels from novice to advanced. An international three day 2 star event has been held at the course since 2004 attracting riders from all over the world, including America and Europe. As well as the international standard fences, there are plenty of natural and man made fences that any rider will enjoy jumping.

Whether you are a novice rider hoping to improve your skills or have years of experience, Aille Cross will have a suitable mount for your week of riding; Willie Leahy is famous for matching horse and rider to ensure that your holiday is as enjoyable as possible.

The minimum level of riding for cross country would be the ability to maintain a secure seat at all gaits and over small obstacles. For Fox Hunting, you will need to be secure at various jump heights and comfortable galloping across open country.

Accommodation for the week is at the friendly local hunting hotel, O'Dea's in nearby Loughrea, or at family run B&B's. During the day a simple picnic lunch is eaten with plenty of tea and hot port on hand. The evening meal is taken at a variety of friendly restaurants in the Loughrea area.

RIDERS MUST WEAR A PROPERLY SECURED HARD HAT WHEN MOUNTED. This is an insurance requirement for The Aille Cross Equestrian Centre. It is adviseable to BRING YOUR HARD HAT.

Loughrea is approximately 25 miles east of Galway City and is an excellent location for nonriders to do some sightseeing during the week.

Getting There:

Shannon Airport is approximately an hour's drive to Loughrea and transportation is available by bus, taxi, or rental car. Many riders prefer to have a rental car for the week as this allows greater flexibility.

Contact us for more information. 

Aille Cross Equestrian Centre - 2016-2017 Dates

Aille Cross Trail

2014/15: Begins every Monday through Sunday morning from end of October through mid-April.

Please note that Aille Cross is happy to accommodate guests for more or fewer days. The package price will be adjusted accordingly.


Hotel 1,480 EURO
Single Supplement 100 EURO

Bed & Breakfast 1,350 EURO
Single Supplement 60 EURO

Note: fluctuations in foreign currency exchange rates may affect the above price quotes, therefore prices quoted on invoice are not valid beyond due date

*We can also arrange for self catering cottages in conjunction w/riding only package. Prices for riding by the day are available upon request.
Prices DO NOT include Hunt Capping Fees. Capping fee is 150 Euro for first day, 100 Euro for 2nd and 3rd day hunting.

Booking & Payment:

An $800.00 non-refundable deposit (per person) is required in order to confirm a booking. The balance of payment is due eight (8) weeks prior to the beginning of the trip. We will bill you ten (10) weeks prior to the beginning of the trip. Checks should be made payable to Forest Luck Equestrian.

Please note that fluctuations in foreign currency exchange rates may affect the above price quotes, however prices are guaranteed not to change after deposit is received.


Date Change: $100 per person. Deposits are not refundable. We will refund the balance of the payment (excluding deposit) if notice is given 60 days before the trip begins. Please notify Forest Luck Equestrian in writing. No refund will be given for cancellations 60 days or under. Aille Cross allows rebooking up to 12 months from cancellation and can be used for Connemara or Coast Trails.


Forest Luck Equestrian is acting solely as a marketing representative for equestrian facilities and makes arrangements on behalf of these facilities. We have no liability other than to reserve your trip.
Forest Luck Equestrian is not liable for actions of carriers, hotels, injury, or loss of properly for any reason whatsoever. We are specifically not responsible for accidents or injuries caused by horses, aircraft, automobiles, riding facilities, contractor. Clients will be provided with a liability release form to sign and return with final payment.


We recommend you check with your insurance company to determine if you are covered while on your holiday. You mail wish to purchase additional coverage.

Aille Cross Equestrian Centre - Itinerary

Riders can enjoy the trail at Aille Cross for a week, or just a few days. We will always be delighted to tailor make a holiday to meet your requirements.

This itinerary is only a sample of what is available for riders. As this is a working farm riders sometimes have the opportunity to help with an exciting horse, cattle or sheep drive, a necessity for farming in this area.


The week begins on Monday with a ride through the forest to Killnadema, where riders have an opportunity to jump small obstacles while the guide assesses their ability. There is plenty of jumping for those who want to, but it must be stressed that all obstacles can be avoided.


On Tuesday riders can either hunt with the famous Irish hunt the Galway Blazers or ride to Knock Ash and jump on the farm land surrounding Aille Cross. Willie Leahy has been field master of this pack for over a decade, so riders are given a great introduction to this exciting sport.


On Wednesday the ride begins at Dartfield - Ireland's Horse World, Willie Leahy's latest venture. Here there are 350 acres of rolling parkland with a superb cross country course for riders to jump. The visit to the course is the highlight of many visits to Aille Cross. Lunch is eaten at Dartfield after which riders have the opportunity to look around the only museum in the world to be dedicated to the Irish horse. The afternoon is spent riding and jumping on the farmland surrounding the museum.


On Thursday riders can hunt again, or ride to Killnadema where there are natural obstacles and stone walls to jump. After lunch, riders will enjoy a hack through a large area of forestry where there are plenty of opportunities for fast gallops along woodland tracks.


Friday is spent at Dartfield again. There is another opportunity to try your skill over the event course. Those not wishing to jump can ride through the farmland around the museum and beyond into the surrounding area.


Saturday is the final day of your stay at Aille Cross. The Galway Blazers meet on a Saturday, so those who are foxhunting will join Willie for an exciting hunt with this popular pack. Those who are not hunting will ride around Aille Cross. Riders will be surprised at how much their confidence and ability has increased during the week under the guidance of our professional tutors. After lunch there is a final opportunity to ride around the beautiful farmland surrounding Aille Cross, before it is time to say goodbye to the horses that have been your faithful companions during the week.