Donkeys, docile animals that allow us to rediscover the slowness and ability to get in touch with others. Here is where to spend a green holiday with them in Italy.
After the mechanization of agriculture, donkeys began to disappear. We thought we no longer needed them, but how wrong we were! In the 1950s, donkeys in Italy were more than a million, but they endangered extinction. Now they are 59,000, 90% more than 10 years ago. We rediscovered their sensitive and docile soul, their sympathy and their patience. We found out that donkeys are good for our bodies and our minds.
Pet-therapy with donkeys
Onotherapy involves the use of donkeys in the rehabilitation and treatment of psychic and physical illnesses, especially in children. But all of us can learn from these affectionate animals: by establishing a relationship with them we find trust in us, and we cultivate the ability to get in touch with others.
Tourism and donkeys
We then found that donkeys are great friends, and we found out that their milk is great for those who are allergic to cow. But donkeys are also something more. They are the connection with a lost rural world, with the rhythms of nature, so different from those of our cities. There are more and more farmhouses and accommodation facilities that offer to their guests the opportunity to live a few days together with donkeys, to discover the slow pace of walking in their company. Here are 10 eco-friendly accommodations where you can live a new frontier of rural tourism.
Pet-therapy on Lessini Mountains
Malga Riondera offers contact activities, games and walks with donkeys for children in the middle of unspoiled nature, among the untouched forests of the Lessina Natural Park and Dolomites in Trentino.
Country work with donkeys in Liguria
The eco-village Torri Superiore, in the Ligurian West, teaches visitors how to use donkeys and other equines in agriculture so that they can effectively and respect their nature to know them better, prepare the vegetable garden, transport and carry out other agricultural jobs.
As a donkey step on the Emilian appennine
The Ostello dei Balocchi offers all year round weekend or individual days dedicated to families, to spend in the nature together with the donkeys of the accommodation, to live a deep experience of contact and observation, to learn the taste of slowing down.
Along with Martina the donkey in Madonie Park
Antico Feudo San Giorgio is a charming farmhouse in Sicily, in a perfect location for hikers. Here you can take part in cooking classes, bread preparation and beautiful walks with the donkey called Martina.
At the margins of the beautiful Casentino Forests
In the organic farm La Collina delle Stelle you will know the pleasant feeling of being out of the world, at least for a while. You will be able to admire breathtaking views, enjoy the products of the earth while the children live nature on the donkey’s back.
Discovering the Karst on the back of a donkey
The “Parco Rurale Alture di Polazzo” Farm, located in the Karst area for more than 100 years, offers comfortable, eco-friendly apartments. During the stay you can book unique experiences such as the course on wool processing or the trekking along with donkeys.
To know the most beautiful native race of Italy
Masseria Iazzo Scagno is a charming place in the heart of Apulia. Among the pets of the farm there are also some donkeys of Martina Franca, indigenous of the area.
Among the Marche hills
In the heart of Frasassi’s Red Glacier Park, the organic farm La Becerca is waiting for us with a didactic farm and panoramic views over the soft hills of Marche.
Sharing the travel in Emilia Romagna
Ca’ del Ciuco offers beautiful double rooms, a restaurant based on traditional cuisine and its donkeys as travel companions, to rediscover the slowness and beautiful landscapes of the area.
The true countryside a few miles from Rome
The Casale Hortensae bed & breakfast offers travelers the chance to experience the authentic countryside: with dogs, cats, chicken, raging donkeys and goats.
Discover the peasant life in Trentino
At the foot of Adamello Brenta Nature Park, in Comano Terme, Maso Pertener farmhouse is the perfect place for a natural and relaxing holiday. Here you learn to respect and know nature and you can visit the organic farm that also hosts donkeys.
Pet Teraphy with the donkeys in Sardinia
In a setting of great natural and archaeological value, four kilometers from Arzachena, on Costa Smeralda, you can experience an holiday with Veronica’s donkeys. From pet therapy to trekking at the donkey pace, it is also an opportunity not to be missed to discover the wonders of Sardinia. For example, you can walk along the Sentiero dei Giganti (Giant Trail), visit ancient Nuragic complexes such as La Prisgiona, or the Coddu Vecchiu tombs. Sharing the way with a donkey is an amazing experience to reconnect with the earth and the rhythms of nature, but also to create a deep relationship with the animal that accompanies you. “Don’t walk behind me; I may not lead. Don’t walk in front of me; I may not follow. Just walk beside me and be my friend” says a famous quote by Albert Camus.
To organize your donkey trail you can contact directly Veronica and “Asini si Nasce” association. If you stay more days we recommend opting for one of the beautiful eco-friendly bed and breakfasts in the surroundings.