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The Peruvian Paso Horse by ANGELA THOMPSON

The Peruvian Paso: There are many different types and breeds of horses that specialize in many different areas; some are best for racing, some for jumping and others for parades. However, it has been agreed that the qualities that make the best all around horse are temperament, beauty, versatility, low maintenance, and being all around pleasurable. The Peruvian Paso is the one horse that meets all of these criteria. The Peruvian Paso is considered to be the smoothest riding horse on earth. Its natural and efficient gait, which is a lateral four beat step, is what makes it unique, along with its fiery spirit, gentle nature and eagerness to please.

Horse, Paramero of PeruThe breed's ancestors came from Spain and included a mixture of Barb, Spanish Jennet, and Andalusian. The breed was refined and carefully bred in Peru for several centuries, making for a purebred that has roots that can be traced back to the naturally gaited horses of Spain.

Christopher Columbus brought the first horses to the island of Santo Domingo in 1493 that were used to start the first breeding operation. Soon after, the breed moved down into the central parts of South America and was used for mounting troops during their conquests. In 1532 Francisco Pizzaro's troops used an early version of the Peruvian Paso when he conquered the Inca Empire. It was here, in Peru's rough terrain, where these lovely animals stayed isolated and were bred to perfection.

The horse is medium sized, usually standing between 14.1 and 15.2 hands. It has a powerful build with a deep chest and heavy, gracefully arched neck which contribute to their remarkable endurance. The coat color varies between chestnut, black, brown, bay, buckskin, palomino, gray, roan or dun colors; with solid colors, grays and dark skin considered most desirable. They have an abundant, lustrous mane that can be either straight or curly.

Breeders consider temperament and gait as the most important characteristics of the Peruvian Paso:

In selecting for temperament, Peruvian Paso breeders are searching for brio. Brio is often translated as "spirit," but is actually a more complex term. It is a somewhat contradictory temperament, which combines arrogance, spirit, and the sense of always being on parade, with loyalty and an eagerness to please their rider. If a horse has a bad temperament, it will not be bred, lest that trait be passed to further generations.

Albright interprets the sensation of brio in the following quote:

“He comes into view, elegant and handsome... maybe even a little pretentious and arrogant. Always on parade, he fills the scene with his ample movements. The universe is barely big enough to contain his boastful gaiety. He is a source of great pleasure to his owner and to all those who see him."

As for their gait, Purebred Peruvian Paso horses are born with their ability to gait and show it off soon after they are born: the gait is inbred and does not require training. Purebred Peruvian Paso foals can be seen gaiting alongside their dams within a few hours of their birth. The Peruvian Paso has four unique four-beat gaits which are performed between the walk and the canter instead of a trot (although they can still canter and gallop): The Walk, Paso Llano, Sobreandando, and Huachano. These gaits are lateral - left hind, left fore, right hind, right fore- instead of diagonal like trotting horses. In this way the weight is more evenly distributed and little to no movement is transferred to the rider.

This characteristic gait was bred into the Peruvian Paso for the purpose of covering long distances over a short period of time without tiring the horse or rider. During the execution of the gait the horse has a singular and exceptionally smooth horizontal balance, due to a trait called termino- a spectacular leg action, originating from the shoulder, in which the front lower legs roll to the outside during the stride forward, similar to a swimmer's arms. It supplies essentially none of the vertical jolt familiar to equestrians, so posting (moving up and down with each of the horse's footfalls) is unnecessary. It is also very stable, as the Peruvian Paso's execution of the gait means that it always has at least 3 of its feet on the ground, which consequently, makes for a smoother ride. In fact, the ride is so smooth that a common way to judge a show is to have each rider carry a champagne glass and see who spills the least. Quite often nobody spills a drop.

Another thing that makes the Peruvian a great all around horse is that it is good for all types of people: old, young, big , little, experienced or not. Because of their quiet disposition and dependability, anyone can handle these horses. They can also be therapeutic: where most people with back problems, hip problems, and other heath problems shouldn’t or can’t ride horses, the Peruvian is actually good for them and has, at times, been recommended by doctors.

Today, these horses are becoming more and more popular in the US and elsewhere due to their nature and comfortable ride. The estimated 25,000 horses worldwide are used for pleasure, trail, horse shows, parades, and endurance riding. The Peruvian Paso horse is recognized as part of the Patrimonio Cultural (Cultural Patrimony) of Peru.


Kuoda Tours brings horse lovers on riding tours along the most spectacular trails of Peru; Please visit us at


Maria Angola Hotel Lima ****
This graceful property in a quiet area, offers elegant accommodation and modern facilities to make your stay in Lima a pleasant one.  Maria Angola Hotel is situated in the heart of Miraflores, only 10 minutes from downtown Lima and 20 minutes from the Jorge Chavez International Airport. It is as well close to the major commercial, financial, tourist and cultural centres of this area.  The hotel provides well-equipped and comfortable guest rooms, each with a private bathroom.  You can enjoy most delicious international and Creole dishes served at the in-house cafe. In addition, the bar offers an intimate ambiance and is the ideal place to relax.
Mariel Hotel Lima ***
Offering the most comfortable, economical and practical way to combine the advantages of your own home, this first class international hotel offers personal style of Peruvian hostelry tradition. Mariel Hotel Lima is located in Miraflores, a place where tradition and history go hand in hand with important cultural, commercial and financial centres. The most important Indian craftwork markets are very close to the hotel.  Mariel has 40 modern guest rooms, each equipped with cable TV and international and national direct dial phone.  You can dine at the in house restaurant that serves a wide range of continental buffet breakfast. In addition, the restaurant also offers typical Peruvian cuisine.
Marriott Hotel Lima *****
This prime location, spectacular view, personalized service and high-end product makes Lima's Hotel the best choice.  Marriott Hotel Lima is situated overlooking the ocean, directly across Parque Salazar and adjacent to Larcomar shopping centre. Guests can visit the Church of San Francisco and museums such as Amano and De Osma.  Magnificently suited to business and pleasure, the hotel offers 300 elegant guest rooms that are well equipped with modern amenities and come with an ocean view.  Guests can dine at the onsite restaurant, serving traditional and international cuisine and also unwind at the bar with a fine drink.  During leisure, you can work out at the gymnasium or relax at the refreshing swimming pool and sauna.
Maury Hotel Lima ***
This graceful property in a quiet area, offers elegant accommodation and modern facilities to make your stay in Lima a pleasant one.  Located between Ucayali and Carabaya Street, Maury Hotel is only 50 meters from the Main Plaza in Lima 's historical centre. It allows you to easily visit the most important tourism areas from the colonial and republican period.  The Maury Hotel offers 64 spacious rooms and 12 suites with Jacuzzi. All rooms are luxuriously equipped with the most modern facilities including private baths to guarantee a pleasant stay.  El Salon de los Espejos Gourmet Restaurant, is one of the main attractions of the Hotel because of its distinguished neo-classical style and finest dishes of the national, international and Chinese cuisine. The Maury Chinese Restaurant with its fast service, low priced food, and high quality service is a perfect alternative for your dining pleasure.
Melia Hotel Lima *****
Boasting the most comfortable and luxurious lodging, the Melia Hotel makes it the perfect base for all business as well as leisure travellers to reside.  The Melia Hotel is located in San Isidro, one of the most prestigious residential areas in Lima. Placed close to the Jorge Chavez International Airport, this property is also in immediate proximity to the International Pacific Exhibition Center, historical city centre of Lima and the commercial and leisure district of Miraflores.  Melia Hotel offers 185 beautifully appointed rooms, each elegantly decorated and equipped with sophisticated elements to ensure you a luxurious stay.  The International Restaurant El Tambo serves a variety of Creole, Italian, seafood and Spanish cuisine in buffet style for you to relish on. The Coffee Shop and Bar with a private and elegant atmosphere offers refreshing drinks.
Plaza Del Bosque Hotel Lima *****
Strategically located at the most important part of the city and offering impeccable accommodation, the Plaza del Bosque Hotel invites you to enjoy a pleasant stay in Lima.  Located in the financial and commercial district of San Isidro, the Plaza del Bosque Hotel is surrounded by beautiful parkland, shopping centres and the best gourmet alternatives. The hotel is also close to the cultural, entertainment and touristic centres as well as Lima's Historic Centre.  Plaza del Bosque features 96 well decorated suites, each comprising a completely equipped kitchen. All the rooms feature modern amenities to satisfy your needs.  With a nice view to the city, the El Bosque Restaurant offers delicious Creole, Oriental and Spanish buffet in a beautiful environment. The bar features the best of liquor and cocktails for you to taste.
Regency Hotel Lima **
Offering personalised service and comfortable accommodation, this property is the perfect base for business as well as leisure travellers.  Located between the districts of Miraflores and San Isidro, Regency Hotel is in the heart of the city and 20 kilometres from the Lima Airport.  The hotel offers 32 comfortable guestrooms that are air-conditioned and come with an array of modern amenities. In addition, attentive room service is provided for your convenience.  Start your day with a scrumptious breakfast served at the hotel. The on-site restaurant serves delicious cuisine for you to feast on. You can also unwind at the cosy bar with a fine drink after a busy day.
San Blas Hotel Lima ***
Featuring a range of services and comfortable accommodation, the San Blas Hotel welcomes you for an enjoyable stay in Miraflores.  Located in the traditional district of Miraflores, San Blas is near the main commercial and financial areas of Lima and is just 20 minutes from Jorge Chavez International Airport.  All the rooms at San Blas are spacious, comfortable and well equipped with the necessary amenities to make you feel at home.  San Blas Coffee Bar is a perfect place to relax with family and enjoy the delicious Peruvian cuisine served in a lively environment.
Sheraton Hotel Lima *****
Blending exceptional standards of comfort, warm hospitality and personalised services, this stunning property makes you to enjoy all the privileges of an unforgettable stay.  Situated at the Lima historic centre, Sheraton Hotel is 15 minutes drive from the Jorge Chavez International Airport. The Grau Square, Justice Palace, Municipal Theatre as well as the Chinatown are the major attractions in Lima.  Designed for your comfort and convenience, the 431 luxurious accommodation units are well-appointed and come with all the contemporary amenities to make your stay a memorable one.  Guests can dine at the on-site Las Palmeras Restaurant that serves delicious Peruvian and international cuisine for breakfast, lunch as well as dinner. You can sip your favourite drink as well as relax in the cosy atmosphere of the tastefully designed bar.
Suites Del Bosque Hotel Lima *****
Boasting a tranquil ambience and comfortable accommodation, this property is an ideal place for business as well as leisure travellers. Located in an exclusive district of San Isidro, Suites Del Bosque Hotel Lima is in a residential area. This property is easily accessible from the banks, restaurants, museums and shopping malls, while the Jorge Chavez International Airport is 30 minutes by car. This hotel offers 54 comfortable accommodation units that are equipped with a well-maintained kitchen and come with a host of modern amenities to ensure you a pleasant stay.  Start your day with a scrumptious buffet breakfast served at the hotel. Guests can relish delicious cuisine in an elegant setting of the on-site Los Cristales Restaurant. After a tiring day, you can unwind at the cosy bar with your favourite drink.
Swissotel Hotel Lima *****
Being an ideal place in the city of Lima, this hotel offers a warm welcome, pleasant ambience and convenient facilities to make your stay a memorable one.  Located in the heart of Lima, Swissotel Hotel is close to the shopping and commercial centres, while the Jorge Chavez International Airport is 14 kilometres away.  This property offers 244 beautifully decorated guestrooms that are elegantly furnished with an array of contemporary amenities to satisfy the needs of discerning travellers.  The on-site La Locanda Restaurant serves delicious Mediterranean and fusion cuisine for you to feast on. Guests can also dine at the La Fondue Restaurant that serves delectable Swiss cuisine. You can also relax at the cafe with snacks and beverages as well as sip on various drinks at the cosy bar.
Tallanes Hotel Lima ****
Assuring comfortable accommodation and quality amenities, this property is an ideal place to reside for business and leisure travellers.  Situated in the heart of San Isidro, Tallanes Hotel Lima is surrounded by the restaurants and shopping malls, while the Jorge Chavez International Airport is 15 kilometres away.  Elegantly designed, the spacious guestrooms are gracefully appointed and come with all the contemporary amenities, enabling you to relax and have a blissful sleep after a busy day.  Guests can relish delicious international cuisine in an elegant setting of the on-site restaurant. Sip your favourite drink at the cosy bar, which is also an ideal place to relax.

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