My kids and I went on the Mahaleapu Beach Ride (CJM Stables) and were very happy with our choice. We were staying in Princeville, and while there horseback riding opportunities closer to the resort (like Princeville Ranch), the drive down to Poipu was well worth it because of the spectacular views of the coast. We had tried to book the "Secret Beach Picnic Ride," but by the time we called to make our reservations (about two weeks in advance), it had already sold out on the day we wanted to go, so we chose the Mahaleapu Beach Ride instead.
The staff was very professional and helpful from start to finish. There were probably 25 or so people there for the afternoon ride, and so they broke us into several small groups of about 8-10 riders. After getting us on horseback, we first headed down to the beach for the obligatory photo (our guide took the picture using our camera, so there was no attempt to upsell with an "official" framed photo and DVD, which was much appreciated!). Then we started heading up the trail away from the beach. At first, I thought this was going to turn into a boring ranch ride, but once we got up the hill a bit, the views of the ocean and cliffs were amazing. Circling back around (different trail), we ended up back at the beach and then headed back to the stable.
The horses were very gentle, which I certainly appreciated for my 9 year-old kids' sakes, although there were times where I thought the pace was pretty pokey, and no amount of kicking would get my horse "Stinger" to pick up his pace (which was probably for the best!). There is a bit thorny scrub along the trail, and so wearing jeans is a must. There were a few places where the trail was narrow and/or a bit steep, but the horses were all sure-footed. I had no problem taking pictures while on the move, although there were certainly quite a few opportunities to stop and shoot. Finally, there are no facilities along the way, so you should be prepared to be on the back of your horse for the full two hours.
Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.