Sleepy Hollow Horse Riding, Established in 1975, we are the oldest operating horse riding business in the Noordhoek Valley. We are lucky to have such an amazing location nestled at the foot of the world renowned, scenic Chapman’s Peak Drive with easy trail access to the white sands of Noordhoek Beach.
Our staff are amazing and caring individuals. When not leading bush trail rides or beach rides they are giving riding lessons to students of all ages or facilitating hippotherapy – a therapeutic riding program for children and adults who have minimal special needs.
We love what we do and where we get to do it. When you arrive, we are sure you will see it in our smiles. We look forward to meeting you and hitting the trail together. Noordhoek
Sleepy Hollow Horse Riding is situated in Noordhoek. Here is a bit more information on what you may find in the area surrounding our farm, as well as what you can see on our trails.
The name Noordhoek (“northern corner” in Dutch) was given to this area in 1743 to describe it as the north corner of the Slangkop farm where Frederick Rousseau’s widow, Christina Diemer, lived. In the past, this land was mostly used to cultivate vegetables for the ships passing Simon’s Town, but since then it has grown to a great community of houses, farms, shops and tourist attractions.
Although Noordhoek has grown and changed much over the years, its unique natural atmosphere remains. Great oak trees border the lanes and horses can be seen grazing peacefully in paddocks. A little stream running through the Noordhoek Common creates a fairylike ambiance with the surrounding green grass, sheltering trees and birdsong. Further up the mountain, the famousCapeFynbosadorn the land. From there you get a stunning view of the Atlantic Ocean and the white sands that stretch more than 8km to formNoordhoekBeach. On the beach, the famous Kakapo Shipwreck still resides. The Kommetjie Lighthouse, Chapman’s Peak, Sentinel Hill and the Silvermine Nature Reserve can also be seen from these sandy shores.
In addition to its charming appearance, Noordhoek houses a vast variety of indigenous flora and fauna. These include the Fynbos, Arum Lilly, African Fish Eagle, Greater Flamingo, African Sacred Ibis, Black Oystercatcher, Black-winged Stilt, Egyptian Goose, Avocet, Little Egret, Hadeda Ibis, Hartlaub’s Gull, Ginea Fowl, Brown Fur Seal, African Clawless Otter, Great White Shark, Humpback Whale, Southern Right Whale, Bottlenose Dolphin, Black Adder and more.
Kakapo Ship Wreck
Captain Nicolaysen was aboard the Kakapo ship on its voyage from Swansea to Sydney, when it ran aground on the night of 25 May 1900. He had mistaken Chapman’s Peak for Cape Point during a north-west winter storm that obscured his visibility. Instead of safely delivering it to the False Bay Harbor, he had run the ship full-speed onto Noordhoek Beach. Luckily it carried no cargo and no lives were lost during this incident, but the damage to the ship was irreparable.
Today the wreck of the SS Kakapo can be seen onNoordhoekBeachjust over 3km along the beach. With its ideal setting and Chapman’s Peak in the background, this ship was used in a few scenes in the film Ryan’s Daughter, which was actually set inIreland.
Chapman’s Peak Drive runs from Noordhoek to Hout Bay for 9km in a series of twists and turns along the mountainside. It is one of Cape Town’s most scenic marine drive with its beautiful views of Noordhoek, HoutBay, the great expanse of sea in between, and the waves as they crash against the boulders at the foot of the mountain. To keep this exceptional road accessible, a toll-gate has been set up here to collect money for its maintenance (R33 per car one-way).
Many people go up to the lookout points to see the magnificent sunset over the vast sea. From here,HoutBayand Sentinel Hill can be seen as well, making this one ofCape Town’s most amazing views. There are also numerous hiking trials up Chapman’s Peak that can be accessed from the road.
You can phone Noordhoek Tourism office to confirm if the road is open, as it sometimes closes due to bad weather conditions.
We are very fortunate to have a such a wonderful team here at Sleepy Hollow Horse Riding! Our staff is a friendly group of people who care deeply about horses and people.
Lisa McCallum is the owner and manager of Sleepy Hollow Horse Riding. She lives on the premises with her husband, 2 children and all their farm animals. She is a registered Occupational Therapist, specialising in Hippotherapy, with a passion for helping people with disabilities through horse riding.
Award City of Cape Town to Lisa McCallum
Our permanent riding instructor is Jeanne Bircher. Although she mainly give riding lessons, she also have a lot of other tasks at Sleepy Hollow to keep her busy all day! She assists during therapy sessions and helps out with SARDA every Thursday morning. When lessons finish each term, she is the one who organise the Pony Camps for the kids.
Nkazi Joyce and at times Maureen Gibb are answering phone calls and emails, helping our customers, keeping the office and everything in it in order and more… If you ever have any general questions or queries, they are the ones to ask! Nkazi is a great help at pony parties 🙂
Joan Laing is an ad-hoc consultant in the accounts office.
Japie Salmoen is in charge of our grooms. They are responsible for keeping our farm so well maintained and the animals fed and taken care of. Our pony rides are also taken out by our friendly grooms, who lead the ponies through the lanes of Noordhoek and around the farm.
We have a group of very experienced and competent trail guides who take out our Beach Trails and Bush Trails. Although they are not with us on a permanent basis, as bookings for the trails vary weekly, they are still a great part of our family here at Sleepy Hollow.
Since 1992 Sleepy Hollow therapy has been providing hippotherapy, therapeutic riding, riding for the disabled and para equestrian sport riding, for people with special needs with the help of SARDA Noordhoek. We also make use of the help of volunteers.
Saddling up a horse is an enjoyable experience for many people, but for an individual with a disablility it can signify much morse – a road to recovery and freedom.Each year people with physical, cognitive and emotional disabilities are discovering the benefits of Therapeutic Horse back riding. Horses provide challenges as well as rewards.
Therapeutic riding is the use of the horse and equine orientated activities to achieve a variety of therapeutic goals. The benefits of therapeutic horse riding are as numerous as the types of disabilities and conditions served. Research shows that students who participate in therapeutic riding can experience physical, emotional, cognitive, social, educational and behaviour rewards.
The differences between Therapeutic Riding and Hippotherapy is that Hippotherapy is a treatment strategy used by therapists who specialise in Hippotherapy. The therapists treat with the help of a trained horse professional. Therapeutic Riding is conducted by a Therapeutic riding instructor who consults regularly with a therapist and the therapist does the assessment and determines aims and goals for that rider and a program is devised with the Therapeutic Riding Instructor. In Hippotherapy the horse influences the patient, and the patient does not usually influence the horse in any way, as the horse professional is controlling and moving the horse. In Therapeutic riding not only does the horse influence the rider, but the rider will at times influence the horse. The emphasis in Therapeutic riding is on working towards learning riding skills, through therapeutic activities on horse back, focusing on areas of challenge and specific therapy goals.
The sense of independance found on horse back benefits all who ride. The therapeutic qualities of horse riding are recognized by many medical professionals. Individuals of all ages, disabilities and many conditions utilize therapeutic riding and other equine activities, including Hippotherapy.
Therapeutic riding activities are conducted by Riding for the Disabled Instructors under the and in conjunction and overseen by Therapists specialising in Hippotherapy on Thursdays during school terms. Physiotherapist, Occupational Therapists or Speach Therapists who have undergone specialised training in Hippotherapy, can specialise in Hippotherapy. In South Africa Hippotherapy courses are run and organised by EATASA (Equine Assisted Therapy Association of South Africa).