Mangalarga Marchador

Get the facts, history, and characteristics of Brazil's smooth-gaited Mangalarga Marchador horse breed.


Mangalarga Marchador History

The Mangalarga Marchador (sometimes referred to as simply the Marchador) is the national horse of Brazil and its genealogy is rich with horses from the Iberian Peninsula.

Mangalarga Marchador

Sublime, the foundation stallion of the Mangalarga, was a product of horses brought to Brazil by the Portuguese royal family in the early 1800s. Sublime was put to mares of the gaited Spanish Jennet, Criollos, Andalusians and the Barb. These were called Sublime horses, but the breed’s name was later changed to Mangalarga; a nod to the first hacienda that embraced the breed.

In São Paulo the Mangalarga was crossed with Thoroughbred, Arabian and American Saddlebred, which led to another registry; the Mangalarga Paulista. The Mangalarga Marchador remains a pure breed, unchanged since the 1800s. The horses are used for polo, jumping, endurance riding and leisure pursuits.

Mangalarga Marchador headshot

Mangalarga Marchador Characteristics

The profile of the Marchador is very upright; reminiscent of its Barb ancestry, with strong hindquarters, highly arched neck and noble head.

The Marchador is a gaited horse (the second name Marchador refers to this) with two specific gaits: the smooth marcha picada and the marcha batida.

Marchadores are found in all solid colors with gray, chestnut and pinto most prominent. Height ranges from 14.2 to 16 hands high.

Side view of a pinto Mangalarga Marchador mare's conformation

For more information:

US Mangalarga Marchador Association,

Further Reading



Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here