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Unbridled enthusiasm – meet our grooms
– Activities

Equestrian at Poronui has long been synonymous with well-schooled horses, incredible trails and professional and enthusiastic guides. In this blog, we meet Jen and Sara – who add a wealth of experience to the 2020 team – and are great fun to be with.


“I have spent my whole life around horses. I started riding when I was 10 on a little caricature style pony; super fluffy and chubby, with a mane and forelock that covered his eyes and whipped you in face while you cantered! With Ebony I learned about the buzz of competing and started jumping, and we were soon entering little local competitions and showing classes.

I was 15 when I moved on my horse named Millie, who I owned and competed for almost 10 years. She was a WBx and totally mad, which I loved! We started competing together, and most weekends were spent at different shows and competitions around the area. We used to compete for my school team and through the local pony club. When I moved away for university I decided to take Millie with me, so my life up there was pretty horse filled too!

I unfortunately lost Millie to a field accident, and it was at this point I decided it could be a good time to see the world and travel. After 5 years of backpacking and working around the world I made it to NZ… and I haven’t left!

The saying goes ‘find a job that you love and you won’t work a single day in your life’. I think I’ve found one.

Poronui is an amazing place to be able to explore. Almost every day you can discover new places and doing it by horseback is definitely the best way! It also helps that everyone that works at Poronui seems to have such pride in what they do, which makes for an amazing working environment and team to be a part of.

The horses we have are a total joy to be around and to ride. We have a small team of 5 horses, who all have their own personalities and characters. I love the fact that no matter what level of rider that comes to Poronui, they are guaranteed to enjoy their experience and be matched with a horse that suits their skills and expectations. I don’t like to say I have a favourite… but I think it has to be Cadbury. The BFG.

I’ve been asked what I’m looking forward to most this season and I’m simply looking forward to getting out and exploring on the horses! There are so many hills and forests to discover around Poronui, I feel like I’ve only just scratched the surface.”


“I love everything Equestrian! From grooming to everyday duties. I enjoy riding at all levels.”

Growing up in the North of England, Sara began riding at the White Rose Equestrian Centre, at 3yrs old. She worked her way up to competing at Grand Prix level, representing Great Britain in Show Jumping at both Junior and Young Rider level.

She’s broken in and produced many young horses and was an active member of her Local Hunt club, Badsworth. She has extensive experience in coaching children and adults from beginners to advanced levels and comes to Poronui with a wide range of skills and knowledge of both competitive and pleasure riding.

Since moving to New Zealand 12 years ago, she has enjoyed a slightly slower pace, but still competes in both show jumping and eventing. And, she assists her daughter who is show jumping at Pony Grand Prix Level.

“Having travelled extensively around New Zealand I have seen some stunning countryside and Poronui is one of the best. It has beautiful trekking areas suitable for all levels from beginner to experienced equestrians. I love that we can cater to those wanting a quiet horseback walk to take in all the natural wonders and also those more adventurous and experienced riders looking for a thrill seeking fast paced ride!”

“I am most looking forward to sharing my Equestrian experience to ensure treks are as enjoyable as possible.”

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