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The Hanbury-Tenison Collection

Robin Hanbury-Tenison, explorer and equestrian traveller par excellence, needs no introduction to our British visitors!
Robin was hailed by The Sunday Times as "the greatest explorer of the past twenty years."  He made the first land crossing of South America at its widest point, led twenty-four expeditions and was awarded the Patron's Gold Medal by the Royal Geographical Society.  Robin is one of the few remaining British explorers who know all the wild corners of the world. 
When he wasn't in a jungle, Robin was turning his hand to helping others.  He is President and co-founder of Survival International, a charity which helps tribal peoples defend their lives, protect their lands and determine their own futures. 
Then, with his wife, Louella, Robin went on to make four wonderful equestrian journeys - across France, along China's Great Wall and through both islands of New Zealand.  Finally the couple made the pilgrimage to Spain's Santiago de Compostela.
Robin's website is
Robin writes beautifully and evocatively, and all these titles have been highly sought-after.
We are delighted and proud to put them back into print as part of our Equestrian Travel Classics.

ISBN 1590481216

White Horses Over France, Robin Hanbury-Tenison

White Horses Over France tells the story of a magical journey – and how, in fulfilment of a personal dream, the first Camargue horses set foot on British soil in the late summer of 1984.  It is also a vigorous celebration of life on horseback, and in particular a tribute to two enchanting and affectionate characters who, bred for their stamina, intelligence and skill at working with bulls, proved to be scared stiff of cows – and even sheep.

In a life filled with exotic explorations and adventures, Robin Hanbury-Tenison had always nursed one particular ambition:  to bring home to his farm in Cornwall working horses from the famous wetlands of southern France.  He and his wife Louella chose two horses and named them respectively Thibert and Tiki after the village where the finest Camargue saddles are made and the paddle steamer on the Petit Rhone.  Their 1,000-mile route encompassed ancient forti­fied towns in the Languedoc, rocky plains skirting the Massif Central, the beautiful gorge of the Aveyron, prehistoric caves, the Dordogne, the Loire and the waterways of Brittany.

Camping and sampling the delights of country inns, Robin and Louella encountered a rich array of landowners, peasant farmers, blacksmiths, fishermen and café patrons.  Any native inhibitions were quickly dispersed by Thibert and Tiki, who made friends wherever they went.  They also took part in the ancient and spectacular running of the bulls in a small Camargue village.

This book will be both an inspiration and a guide to travellers.  The sights of France – the superb châteaux and the varied scenery – and the sounds and smells of the country are all the more sharply observed from the author’s vantage-point à cheval.  It is a travel book par excellence.
Click here to go to Amazon.co.uk or Barnes & Noble Or click here to go to the author's own website for a signed copy!

ISBN 1590481224


Chinese Adventure, Robin Hanbury-Tenison

This is the story of a unique journey in which the explorer Robin Hanbury-Tenison and his wife Louella rode on horseback alongside the Great Wall of China in 1986.  On a series of Chinese horses, and often spending up to twelve hours a day in the saddle, they covered a distance of a thousand miles through regions of China still closed to foreigners.  In their leather chaps and floppy Camargue hats, they were objects of intense curiosity to the Chinese people whom they encountered in their spectacular three-and-a-half month journey through China.
Despite endless difficulties with reluctant officialdom, the Hanbury-Tenisons managed to get permission to travel long sections of the Wall from the Yellow Sea in the east to the edge of the Gobi desert in the west.  They had a support crew of a Chinese interpreter, a driver and a cook, who doubled as a bodyguard.  It was the first time that the Chinese authorities had sanctioned such a journey.
Escaping the roads and towns and industrial landscape, the Hanbury-Tenisons saw a China and its people that few foreigners have ever seen.  From their experience of riding alone across this vast country, away from towns and organized groups, we gain a fresh insight into the past and present of the oldest civilization on earth.  Click here to go to Amazon.co.uk or Barnes & Noble
Or click here to go to the author's own website for a signed copy!

ISBN 1590481232


Fragile Eden, Robin Hanbury-Tenison

Fragile Eden
is the story of Robin and Louella Hanbury-Tenison’s exploration of New Zealand on horseback in 1988. They rode alone together through what they describe as ’some of the most dramatic and exciting country we have ever seen.’ For two or thee days at a time, Robin and Louella would map read their way by compass across some of the largest farms in the world, at one moment crossing snowy passes of over 6,000 feet, at the next baking in the dry summer heat of the valley floors.  At night they would shelter from the rain and wind in primitive shepherds’ huts, brewing up soup and tea to keep themselves warm.

But while they found scenery so spectacular it more than justified the des­cription of New Zealand as “the most beautiful country in the world," they found, too, a country in crisis.  New Zealanders are striving in the face of new, often restrictive, world markets to lessen their sense of economic isolation and vulner­ability and to cut their country’s large overseas debt.  And serious environmental problems have, like those of the economy, hit the country’s major industry – agriculture – hardest.  As President of Survival International, Robin Hanbury-Tenison was struck, too, by the fear and hostility shown to the Maoris by many of their countrymen, though encouraged by his constructive meetings with their leaders.

But above all, as Robin and Louella entered the magic worlds of the remaining beech forests of the South and the even older kauri forest of the North, as they met and stayed with kind and energetic farmers who loved their land and worked hard on it, they came to feel a real affection for the country and its people.  Fragile Eden combines with rare sympathy the romance of the adven­ture story with the stark realities of twentieth-century life.
Click here to go to Amazon.co.uk or Barnes & Noble.

Or click here to go to the author's own website for a signed copy!

ISBN 1590481240

Spanish Pilgrimage, Robin Hanbury-Tenison

This is the delightful story of Robin and Louella Hanbury-Tenison’s journey to Santiago de Compostela in 1989.

For a thousand years a long, hot and dangerous journey over the mountains, the dusty plains and the rich countryside of Spain has led millions of Christian pilgrims to the great cathedral of St. James at Compostela.  The story is as old as medieval history and the route is still alive with the churches, monasteries and shrines built by the faithful.

Readers of Robin Hanbury-Tenison’s other bestselling travel books will be delighted to hear that once again he and his wife Louella went to Santiago de Compostela in a traditional way – riding on white horses over long-forgotten tracks.  It was a family pilgrimage as their four-year-old son, Merlin, went with them.  In the process they discovered more about the people and the country than any conventional traveller would learn.  Their adventures are vividly and entertainingly recounted in this delightful and highly readable book.

Through their journey Robin came to experience a true ‘green pilgrimage,’ an ecological equivalent of the search for religious faith in medieval man.  His fascinating book draws together conclusions from a lifetime of exploration.  Click here to go to Amazon.co.uk or Barnes & Noble.

Or click here to go to the author's own website for a signed copy!

The Land of Eagles - Determined to discover the Albania that lies behind so many stereotypes and preconceptions, Robin Hanbury-Tenison and his wife Louella crossed the country on horseback, from Theth in the north to the border with Greece in the south. In the footsteps of Byron, Edward Lear and Edith Durham they crossed some of the most wild and arrestingly beautiful landscapes in Europe. Through soaring mountain ranges and hidden valleys they lived simply; staying in the homes of communities completely untouched by the 21st century and in towns bursting with artistic creativity. Land of Eagles is the story of a lyrical and dramatic journey, peppered with adventure and mishap, discovery and unexpected encounters. Adorned with the history, legends and literature of Albania and with the tales of past travellers, it is a luminous portrait of this mysterious and eccentric country, which has for too long been forgotten by Europe.

'Robin's zest to explore all sorts of strange places and write books about them has now taken him to Albania - this is a place I have always wanted to go to'  -  Sir Ranulph Fiennes
'Albania remains one of the most mysterious, beguiling countries in Europe. Robin and Louella Hanbury-Tenison have travelled through it in a way I can only envy. Top to bottom on horseback, a journey on which they had the time to look behind the stereotypes of the country and see the dramatic beauty and unique traditions that lie beneath.' -Michael Palin

Click here to go to the author's own website for a signed copy!

Click here to read a review by Nick Smith.

For a list of Robin's non-equestrian travel books, please go to his page on Classic Travel Books!

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