There’s a video going around social media about the wonders of the Netherlands (yes, in response to recent political events in the United States) that makes just the briefest, most casual mention of this fantastic place that is truly the stuff that dreams are made of. After spending half of my afternoon gleefully clicking around the website for PonyparkCity while audibly squealing, I have to agree — this is a true wonder, Netherlands’ finest gift to the world.
It’s like the Dixie Stampede meets Disney World meets Westworld but without the psychopathic robots and with a LOT MORE PONIES.
Basically, you come to PonyparkCity, stay for a week with your family and live in a cabin THAT COMES WITH A PONY. Like a fully-stocked hotel: clean towels, complimentary shampoo, pony.
Okay, I don’t really think the pony is necessarily tied to the front porch awaiting your arrival, but just know that when you book a cozy cabin at PonyparkCity you get your own personal pony for the week. So essentially your most basic need is covered right from the get-go.
Additional ponies do need to be hired per family, so if you have brought more than one tot along (read: smuggled in ALL of your friends from Horse Nation who are all pretending to be under the age limit of 12 to ride) you will need to make sure you book the appropriate number. Because nothing spoils a pony vacation faster than having to share your pony with your sibling.
Once you’ve hooked up with your pony, the world is basically your oyster — there are a number of arena spaces as well as organized pony trail rides into the woods and countryside around PonyparkCity. You can also sign up for free riding lessons from a professional instructor as well as participate in the pony show, including the intriguing “Miss Pony” competition which requires a costume. I bet parents absolutely LOVE packing for this trip.
Helmets are required, and are available for free loan for the week. All riding is bareback, but stirrups are available to borrow as well if your pony jockey requires “more stability.” It’s up to the kids to catch their pony from the giant communal barn, groom and care for their pony every morning — this is no groom-for-hire operation but a real hands-on pony wrangling experience. For anyone fearing a hundred sets of tiny hands yanking on ponies’ mouths, rest assured — it looks like all of the ponies are ridden in halters.
Okay, the pony part is great, but what is there to do the rest of the time? (I mean, let’s be real, if there’s a pony, who even cares, but in case there’s a non-horsey kid in the family, we’ll take a quick tour around the rest of the grounds.)
Perhaps you might enjoy bowling…
… or panning for diamonds (I’m not positive this is how diamonds are mined but we’ll go with it) …
NIEUW & GRATIS in PonyparkCity: de ‘Diamond Mine’! Lukt het jou alle kleuren diamanten te vinden? O ja, en wat je vindt mag je houden! #zoekjerijk #PonyparkCity A photo posted by PonyparkCity™ Official Account (@ponyparkcity) on
… or hanging around with this sheriff with his suspiciously real-looking firearm.
A photo posted by PonyparkCity™ Official Account (@ponyparkcity) on
PonyparkCity truly has it all: there are a number of restaurants around the grounds, all decorated with the same cartoon-colored American Wild West decor and offering dishes like “authentic American BBQ” or Tex-mex as well as a fully-stocked grocery store in case you want to spend the night in.
There’s also a completely-indoor Western town complete with pony performance arena and seating for a thousand, an evening revue show, the quintessential Cowboys and Indians show, miniature golf and all sorts of family-friendly activities. Mom and Dad, we’re holding out hope that there’s an authentic Western saloon serving plenty of whiskey down some side street somewhere.
The rates page mysteriously does not translate into English so we’re not entirely sure how much a week at PonyparkCity will set you back, but WHO CARES because there are literally hundreds of ponies here waiting for you to snuggle them all.
Ponypret! Ps. Check PonyparkCity op Facebook voor het hele filmpje#PonyparkCity A video posted by PonyparkCity™ Official Account (@ponyparkcity) on
Like, legit, HOW MANY PONIES ARE THERE.
I can’t even.
Check out PonyparkCity online, and follow their Instagram at @ponyparkcity for a nonstop dose of pony goodness.