Napoleon, Alexander the Great and El Cid all waged battle mounted on its back. Lorca wrote poetry in praise of its proud gait, while Goya sketched its haughty profile. We are talking about the Andalusian Horse.
This same horse reins have been held over countless generations by noblemen and emperors still treads the sand of riding centres today, showing precisely why it never fails to turn heads. Its graceful movement, noble character and extreme intelligence all ensure that it is always the favourite to be chosen to dance at the finest equine spectacles in the Costa del Sol. The “Rhythm on Horseback” exhibition at Club Hípico El Ranchito for example, where performers ranging from horsewomen riding side saddle to whole teams of expert riders illustrate just how well this famous animal can dance.
At the Costa del Sol school of Equestrian Art, on the other hand, the choreography is denominated by heels and helmets and backed by the chords of the Spanish guitar, all with the unmistakeable hallmark of the Artequus riding centre.
Meanwhile, Finca el Cartujano plays home to a very different spectacle in which the boldness of the Andalusian Pegasus and the horns of the only known domesticated breed of bull are skilfully brought together in a simulated bullfight from which both emerge unscathed.
Only in this corner of Southern Spain could the classical Spanish thoroughbred star in such varied extravaganzas and dance to so many different rhythms.