Welcome to the English pages of our website.
Enjoy a unique day out with your family and friends at Marbach. Come and visit our stud farms all year round. No admission is charged.
The state-run stud Haupt- und Landgestüt Marbach with its farms at Marbach, Offen-hausen and St. Johann is situated idyllically on the Swabian Alb. Looking back on almost 500 years of history, Marbach is the oldest German state-run stud, and at the same time it is the country’s largest education facility for equine professionals.
Marbach is home to stallions of the German warm blood, Black Forest heavy horses and pure-bred Arabians. Apart from our stallions, Marbach owns two stud herds with some 40 warm blood and 20 pure-bred Arabian mares.
The internationally renowned EU insemination facility is located in Offenhausen. This is where our Marbach’s most prestigious stallions are. In the nationally-approved performance testing station for mares and stallions we annually put some 80 horses to a test regarding their temperament and performance under saddle.
One thousand hectares of prime pasture and crop land are used as feed supply for the roughly 520 horses.
Marbach provides excellent conditions for rearing young horses. They grow up together in groups with the stud’s own offspring.
Old Horses can enjoy their well-deserved retirement at the “Schafhaus” facility at St. Jo-hann.
Immerse in a world of history and legends. As lively cultural heritage Marbach offers unfor-gettable moments. Situated amidst the wonderful landscape of the Swabian Alb the stud at-tracts people from all over Germany and from abroad.
Discover Marbach on a guided tour. Our guides will share with you their vast knowledge of horses and people, of famous stallions and their offspring and take you to have a look behind the scenes of this fascinating stud.
One of our main attractions is the stallion parades. On three days at the end of Septem-ber/beginning of October, some 30,000 visitors from all over Germany and from abroad come to the Swabian Alb every year to enjoy the presentation of our beautiful horses and their versatile abilities.
Please contact us from Monday to Friday between 8:30 am and 12:00 noon to arrange your day out at Marbach. If you need further assistance or have any queries you can contact us by calling +49 (0)7385 9695-37 or by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
We offer guided tours for all age groups and group sizes, professionals and school groups, carriage rides in a marathon wagon or with one of the covered wagons around the stud and the picturesque valley of the neighbouring river Lauter as well as exclusive carriage rides in a hunting wagon or a historic Landauer drawn by two or by four horses, followed by a spar-kling wine reception.
We arrange day events at atmospheric locations for private parties, anniversaries or com-pany events - according to your wishes and schedule.
Welcome to Marbach.
Whether child or adult - Marbach has something on offer for everyone. Our employees are happy to assist you to plan your stay, no matter if you are here on business or on holiday. We wish you a pleasant stay at Marbach, the oldest state-run stud of Germany.
Haupt- und Landgestüt Marbach
72532 Gomadingen-Marbach / Germany
Phone +49 (0) 73 85 - 96 95-0
Fax +49 (0) 73 85 - 96 95-10
Horse breeding at Marbach goes back to the middle ages, when Graf Eberhard V established his own private stud here between 1477 and 1480. The ruling Dukes soon realized the need to improve the quality of the local horse breeds, and in 1573 Marbach was elevated to the status of a court and state stud. This, in effect, means that Marbach is Germany’s oldest state stud.
The 18th and 19th centuries saw intense breeding, using Mecklenburger, Holstein, English half-breds, and Norman-bred horses, to improve the quality of the local working horses. Heavier types, such as the Cleveland Bay, Yorkshire Coach Horse and Clydesdale were also used to improve substance and bone.
From about 1896 to 1950 breeding was concentrated on producing a standard Württemberger horse – a multi-purpose animal capable of working the land as well as being suitable for leisure purposes. From the mid-1950’s it was decided to attempt to breed a lighter, more athletic, modern riding horse. The Trakehner stallion Julmond was used as the foundation stallion, and despite being 22 years old when he arrived at Marbach, he helped establish the modern Württemberger warm blood. Julmond died in 1965, aged 27 years, and is buried here, in the forest overlooking the stud.
Cross-breeding with other warm blood breeds, such as the Hannovarian, Oldenburger, Holsteiner, Trakehner and English Thoroughbred, has refined the breed, and today the modern Würrtemberger is highly regarded as a competition horse, as well as a good family all-rounder and carriage horse.
Marbach is also well known as the home of the Weil-Marbach Arabians. Between 1814 and 1819 King Wilhelm I of Württemberg imported a number of Arabian stallions and mares from the Middle East and established his own private stud at Weil (Esslingen). When he died in 1864 the Weil Arabians were considered to be the best in Europe. However, the stud went into decline between 1890 and 1932, and at the height of economic and financial crisis in 1932, Princess Pauline zu Wied decided to sign the entire breeding stock over to Marbach, as the last will and testament of King Wilhelm I forbade the disbandment of the herd. The post-war years saw the Weil-Marbach Arabians at another low-point – the original 17 horses to come from Weil in 1932 carried only one bloodline and another out-cross was urgently required to safeguard the future of these special horses. The saviour was a desert-bred stallion called Hadban Enzahi, imported from the El Zahara stud in Egypt in 1955 as a three-year old. He was perhaps the most enigmatic of stallions, responsible for the foundation of an exceptional family of mares. Such was his influence on the Weil-Marbach Arabians, his legacy can still be seen today in some of the resident Arabian stallions, mares and foals here at Marbach.
Numbers of horses vary slightly from year to year, but most of the popular German Riding Horse breeds are well represented, as well as the Württmberger. We also have one English Thoroughbred stallion, four Altwürttemberger/Schweres Warmblut (heavy warm blood) stallions, Arabian stallions, Schwarzwälder Kaltblüter (Blackforest cold blood) stallions, Süddeutsche Kaltblüter (Southern German cold blood), and a Haflinger stallion.
The mare herds are made up of our own warm blood and Arabian mares – we do not have a cold blood mare herd as the breeding of the Schwarzwälder Kaltblut is conducted by private breeders, mainly in the Black Forest region.
The foals are born early in the year, with the first ones arriving usually at the end of February. Foaling continues to the end of May, although the weather can have an effect on both these dates. The foals and their mothers live as herd groups, and can be seen by visitors either in their respective barns or running free in the fields around the stud.
The Schwalzwälder Kaltblut is a particularly attractive breed of horse. It is the original land or agricultural horse of the Black Forest region, and is distinctively coloured. The body colour is chestnut – no other colour is permitted, although the shade of chestnut can vary from a very bright to a dark ‘liver’ chestnut. The mane and tail of this breed is always flaxen (blond), although this too can vary in shading. As this is a land horse, the neck is relatively short and heavily muscled, with a well sloping shoulder. The back is short and leads to well rounded, heavily muscled hind quarters. The legs are short, with plenty of bone, and are clean – these horses have no feather. This is a versatile breed despite its land horse heritage and is suitable for agricultural work, forestry work, riding and driving. We currently have a Schwarzwälder stallion who performs good Passage and Piaffe (dressage movements) in hand!
Marbach is also well known as the home of the Weil-Marbach Arabians. Between 1814 and 1819 King Wilhelm I of Württemberg imported a number of Arabian stallions and mares from the Middle East and established his own private stud at Weil (near Esslingen). When he died in 1864, the Weil Arabians were considered to be the best in Europe.
However, the stud went into decline between 1890 and 1932, and at the height of economic and financial crisis in 1932, Princess Pauline zu Wied decided to sign the entire breeding stock over to Marbach, as the last will and testament of King Wilhelm I forbade the disbandment of the herd. The post-war years saw the Weil-Marbach Arabians at another low-point – the original 17 horses to come from Weil in 1932 carried only one bloodline and another out-cross was urgently required to safeguard the future of these special horses. The saviour was a desert-bred stallion called Hadban Enzahi, imported from the El Zahara stud in Egypt in 1955 as a three-year old. He was perhaps the most enigmatic of stallions, responsible for the foundation of an exceptional family of mares. Such was his influence on the Weil-Marbach Arabians, his legacy can still be seen today in some of the resident Arabian stallions, mares and foals here at Marbach.
More Than Just a Stud Farm
Marbach is famous for its breeding of quality horses, using German Warm Blood breeds, as well as the English Thoroughbred, and occasionally other European breeds, such as the Dutch Warm Blood. Of course the Weil-Marbach Arabian is world-renowned, and our Schwarzwälder Kaltblut stallions are leading the current renaissance in this breed. Fresh and frozen semen is available from most of our stallions – our insemination centre at Offenhausen is accredited by the EU and full details are available on request. For further information please contact: email@example.com
If you want to buy one of our horses, please see under " Marbacher Verkaufspferde "
But there is more to Marbach than horse breeding…..
We Also Offer …….
The State Riding and Driving Schools are located here at Marbach and courses are available throughout the year for those wishing to learn to ride or drive, as well as courses for instructors, in both disciplines. We use our own home bred horses in both schools, so you can be assured not only of top class instruction, but quality horses to learn with. It is also possible to bring your own horse if you so wish. Further information is available on application.
Performance testing for both warm and cold blooded stallions and mares takes place annually.
Auctions and Sales
The equestrian year at Marbach is full and varied and begins in February with the auction of riding horses and the preview of stallions for the upcoming stud season. Always a popular event to start the New Year, the stallion preview evening is well attended by people from all over southern Germany and from abroad. Other sales are held during the year, but the real highlight is the Elite Auction and Gala Evening in November, where the best of the Württemberger sport horses are bought and sold, some of which go to new homes overseas.
Competitions in most equestrian disciplines are held throughout the year, including the well-known Marbach International Three Day Event. This is held each May and is attended by top riders from all over the world.
Stallion parades The stallion parade is held at the end of September and begin of October and is the showcase for our horses. It is their chance to show the public just what they are capable of, and is a highlight of the year. This show lasts for about four hours, and during this time you will see the young horses at work, the warm blood mare with their foals, horses in harness in various configurations, the dressage quadrille, the Arabian mare herd and many other attractions.The stallion parade ground is also the venue for musical events, and in 2005 we had our first rock concert here at Marbach!
- 7 March: Stallion Presentation
- 14 March: Riding Horse Auction
- 7 till 10 May: International Marbach Eventing
- 14 June: Foal Presentation
- 3, 4 and 5 July: Marbach Classics
- 6 till 9 August: Festival of Dressagehorses
- 27 September: 1. Stallion Parade
- 3 October: 2. Stallion Parade
- 4 October: 3. Stallion Parade
It has recently been acknowledged that tourism plays an important role in the life of Marbach, and with that in mind many new tourist attractions have been established here.
Guided tours of the stud are available in English and French, as well as German. Group tours can be booked for families, overseas visitors, those with a specific interest in horse breeding and other similar groups. For more details of these please see our Tourist Activities page or contact the stud direct. Tours can also be combined with a Planwagen (covered wagon) trip if group numbers are sufficient. Other horse drawn trips include a trip in a Marathonwagen, a more exclusive drive in an open Landau or Jagdwagen (hunting carriage), or when the weather is suitable, a winter sleigh ride. Once again, if you require further details please contact us direct.
Guided Tours are available all year round on Sundays and on public holidays. And in addition every day during school holidays in Baden-Württemberg. Individual tours are available any time but must be booked in advance.
Facilities are available for the hosting of corporate events, wedding receptions, exhibitions and other similar functions in the Old Riding Hall. This is a building with particular historic interest, having being originally constructed at Güterstein, near Bad Urach. In 1860 it was dismantled stone by stone and re-erected at Marbach. The interior of this building is beautifully decorated with the coat of arms of the Kings of Württemberg and is perfectly suited for modern day event hosting. If you require further information please contact us.
Our newly constructed Visitors Centre will be a focal point for visitors to the stud, providing a shop where souvenir articles can be purchased, and visual displays about the horses and the stud can be viewed.
We hope this short introduction to Haupt-und Landgestüt Marbach has given you a taste of what happens here and what we are all about. We look forward to seeing you in the very near future and can assure you of our best attention at all times.