Breed Profile: The Mangalarga Marchador

Last Updated on March 4, 2022 by Allison Price

Find out more about Brazil’s most beloved horse…

Equestrians might be surprised to hear that the Mangalarga Marchador horse is one of the most popular in the world.

This breed is mainly concentrated in Brazil. This is a brief introduction to the smooth-gaited breed that has the ability to work cattle and endurance to match any horse on this planet.


The mid-18th century saw the development of the Mangalarga Marchador.

Francisco Gabriel Junqueira, Portugal, imported Lusitanos from Brazil to his farm and began breeding them with Barbs and other horses found there, including the extinct Spanish Jennets. They were known for their speed and effortless movement. Junqueira called the horse Sublime.

Some of the Sublimes were eventually sold to Mangalarga, a farm in Rio de Janeiro. The breed gained popularity because of its sturdy gaits and comfort.

There were some disputes about the purity of the breed in the 20th century.

Mangalarga Marchador

Geraldo Carneiro, a veterinarian, and zoologist, was able to create a new unifying breed association.

Brazil is home to more than a half-million Mangalarga Marchador horses. The breed can also be found in other countries.

Brazil Horses are subject to an inspection by breed judges in order to be added to the registry. This is similar to Warmbloods or PRE Andalusians.Mangalarga Marchadors
These horses are great for families


It’s easy to spot a Mangalarga Marador horse with its graceful arched neck and powerful hindquarters.

Stallions, like other Spanish breeds, will often sport a prominent crest at the neck.

On average, the breed is approximately 15 hands tall with a deep chest, and a long back. The hooves and feet are strong, as you would expect from a cattle horse that is known for its toughness.

The horse’s head is straight and the ears are slightly inward. It can be found in many colors, including grey, buckskin and bay.


It is a popular breed for people who spend long hours in the saddle due to its unique gaits.

Although this horse can do four gaits, none of them are true trots.

The Mangalarga Marchador is able to walk and canter as other breeds. However, it has two distinct gaits: the marcha batida or marcha picada.

They are both medium speed, four beat, slightly ambling gaits, and make for a luxuriously smooth ride if you are fortunate enough to be able to experience them.

These gaits have a momentary triple hoof support which gives them their glide. The breed can transition from either marcha gait to a canter.

The trocha gait of Paso Fino is the marcha batida. It is a diagonal gait that looks similar to a Fox Trot.

The marcha picada (which means “light touch”) is even more smooth, with a lateral gait that has minimal vertical movement and very similar to the paso llano on the Peruvian Paso horse.


Mangalarga Marchador horse owners in Brazil use an age-old naming convention for their breed.

Horse names are meant to tell the world about the horse’s origins and bloodlines. Old breeders’ names such as Abaiba, Favacho and Passa Tempo still exist in horses bred outside of South America.

Horses are given a compound name. One is a first and one is a surname. It indicates where the horse was born.

You can arrange the names in many ways to suit your personal tastes and preferences. Sometimes “da” and “de” are included to signify “of”.

The Guerra family, for example, was the first to breed Mangalarga Marchadors in America. They chose “de Miami”, as their stable name.

Bossa Nova is the full name of their horse.


Mangalarga Maradors are friendly horses that make great family horses.

They are able to work cattle naturally and are popular as ranch horses in Brazil, Latin America and elsewhere.

Most Brazilian breeders are located in the United States. They participate in Dressage and hunt with great skill.

This horse excels at endurance and trail riding. A Mangalarga Marchador holds a Guinness World Record for the longest endurance riding at 8,694 miles.

The Mangalarga Marchador is the perfect horse for those who are looking for an equestrian with a positive disposition, surefootedness and the ability to work long hours under saddle.

Allison Price
Allison Price

I’m Allison, born and raised in San Diego California, the earliest memory I have with horses was at my grandfather’s farm. I used to sit at the stable as a kid and hang out with my Papa while he was training the horses. When I was invited to watch a horse riding competition, I got so fascinated with riding!