The Portuguese Equestrian Society (Sociedade Hipica Portuguesa with the acronym SHP) has recently celebrated its 100th birthday. We hereby extend our most sincere congratulations. Come to think about it, with such a long history of horses and such a long independence, the Portuguese Equestrian Society could have been still much older.
The National Horse Fair (Feira Nacional do Cavalo) has been happening at Golegã for 34 years now. Since eleven years ago it is also the International Lusitano Horse Fair (Feira Internacional do Cavalo Lusitano). Golegã council, with a little more than 5,500 inhabitants, has a long tradition in horse breeding. With a privileged location near the Tagus River and the ancient Royal Road, Golegã fields are very fertile. Therefore the agriculture has always been very productive and horse breeding has been an activity associated with it.
If you love horses, then your life will not be complete without a visit to the beautiful country of Portugal. The history of equestrian culture in Portugal goes way back to ancient times. The famous Lusitano horse breed hails from this country, a product of hundreds of years of evolution. Horses, in many civilizations have played a pivotal role in enabling man to travel, hunt and of course, to wage war. This unique role in our society meant that along side us, horses too have evolved. Though we humans are now more capable of taking care of horses, and we no longer bring them to dangerous activities, they are still some of the finest beasts that roam our planet.
The importance from the most prestigious Portuguese horse breed, the Lusitano horse, in Brazil is long known and internationally recognized. Now the Brazilian Association of Lusitano Horse breeders (ABPSL) has chosen the city of Águas de Lindóia, in the Brazilian São Paulo state, to organize the I Lusitano Horse Festival from Aguas de Lindóia. This Lusitano Festival will occur between the 4th and 7th of September. This equestrian event will be organized in a similar format from the Lusitano horse fair organized every year in Golegã, Portugal.
Today the 3rd edition from Ponte de Lima Horse Fair will start. This Portuguese equestrian event will be held at Ponte de Lima, a town located in the North of Portugal in the Minho region. There will be many equitation activities organized between the 25th and the 28th of June. This Horse Fair will start with the XII European Working Equitation Championships. Portugal will be present with a very strong working equitation team which includes the famous working equitation rider Pedro Torres.
The most important event dedicated to the Lusitano horse breed in Portugal will be starting today the 10th of June and will be going on until the 13th. The Lusitano horse is the best know and the most appreciated Portuguese horse breed. The International Lusitano Horse Festival is organized by the Portuguese Association of Lusitano Horse Breeders (Associação Portuguesa dos Criadores do Puro Sangue Lusitano – APSL) and will be held as usual in the last editions at Hipódromo Manuel Possolo in Cascais a beautiful town nearby Lisbon.
The main agriculture fair in Portugal is the National Agricultural Fair “Feira Nacional da Agricultura”. This Fair is held at Centro Nacional de Exposições e Mercados Agrícolas (CNEMA) in Santarém which is the capital of the Portuguese region Ribatejo. The 2009 edition corresponds to the 46th National Agricultural Fair and the 56th Ribatejo Fair and will happen between the 6th and 14th of June. In this edition the main theme is “Water” due to its importance to the Portuguese agriculture.
It is difficult to detail the origin of horse driving, although it is certain that is much ancient than Portugal existence. Since the antiquity here are many examples how horse driving was done in the past in civilizations such as the Egyptian, Persian, Greek and Roman. In Portugal horse driving has carried out a long way from being an essential way of transport to the modern equestrian discipline and the leisure horse driving carried out nowadays. Horse driving represents also in Portugal an important part from the Portuguese equestrian heritage.
The eleventh Golegã Mare Fair (IX EXPOÉGUA) will be held at Golegã, Portugal, between the 8th and 10th of May. Golegã, an historic village close to the river Tagus, is known to host every year in November the Golegã Horse Fair (Feira Nacional do Cavalo) which is the main Fair for horses in Portugal. Since eleven years ago, every year in May, Golegã has been hosting a Fair dedicated to the Mare. This Fair has become already a visiting point for all those interested in horse breeding in Portugal.
As Portugal has a long equestrian tradition, Portuguese saddles have an ancient origin. As elsewhere, in Portugal the saddles have evolved over the time having in mind what have been consider the main priorities from equestrian activities, moving from a military purpose to the modern sports. Although there several Portuguese saddle models the traditional Portuguese saddle is certainly the best known both internationally and in Portugal. We can establish a parallelism between the Lusitano horse and the Portuguese saddle. In Portugal there are many horse breeds from many countries coexisting with the Portuguese horse breeds. However the Lusitano horse is the main horse breed reference. In the same way there are nowadays in Portugal many saddle models coming from many countries. However the Portuguese saddle is main saddle model reference when one thinks in a saddle in Portugal.