The following article 1st appeared in Ranch & Reserve Magazine’s 8th issue.
There’s something about summer that brings out a sense of wanderlust in all of us. It makes you want to throw some clothes into a suitcase and leave everything behind in the hope of encountering new experiences that will lead to everlasting memories. With so many vacation options to choose from nowadays it can be difficult to pick the right destination for you, your family or group. Camping in the wilderness, relaxing at a beach-side resort or exploring a new city are always great options; however, choosing to spend your time at a guest ranch is a different, fun and adventurous way to spend a fantastic summer holiday.
There are dozens of reasons why a guest ranch destination should be on your summer vacation to do list. Whether you are organizing a family reunion, a vacation with your immediate family, a getaway with friends or just some alone-time with that special someone a guest ranch vacation is sure to fit the bill. Here are just 5 reasons why booking a guest ranch vacation this summer is the right one for you!
Great bang for your buck!
The majority of guest ranches utilize the “all-inclusive” vacation concept. This means that you pay upfront for your accommodations, meals and in many cases most of your activities are included too. There may be some additional costs but in general your vacation can be budgeted for in advance. You can also customize your vacation to suit your specific needs. An added benefit for solo travelers is that many guest ranches do not add an extra premium to the vacation price.
Reconnect with Nature & Your Loved Ones
We have never been more “connected” than we are now technologically speaking; however, this “connectedness” comes at a heavy price. We are far too often glued to our PCs, laptops, and smart phones even after office hours or while on vacation. We have forgotten what it is like to be truly present in the moment and to be completely focused on the people that are most important in our lives. Many guest ranches are off the grid so to speak, although the majority of them do offer WiFi in their main lodges for those that simply can’t go cold turkey.
Guest ranches provide a great opportunity to reconnect with nature. They are often situated in places that feature majestic mountainous backdrops, lush green forests or arid deserts that boast incredible sunsets and otherworldly landscapes. It is almost impossible not to feel the immensity of nature or be awed by the natural beauty that envelops you while staying at one of these amazing locations.
Learn New Skills
It is always fun to learn a new skill or revel in a sense of accomplishment as you master an activity that is unfamiliar or perhaps even challenging to complete. Guest ranches offer lots of exciting activities to choose from like archery, skeet shooting, rock climbing, rifle shooting, roping, fly fishing, white water rafting and zip lining to name a few. There are countless activities to try that are suitable for all ages and fitness levels. Many guest ranches feature specialized activities owing to their particular terrain or resident expert on hand that add to their guests’ enjoyment.
Saddle up and Ride
Horseback riding aficionados will of course be delighted by the idea of a guest ranch vacation; however, those who are new to the sport will also find great joy in saddling up and experiencing the connection that develops between horse and rider as they ride through breath-taking scenery guided by experienced wranglers. Classes are readily available at most guest ranches to help first-time riders feel more comfortable before mounting up and hitting the trail or for those intermediate riders who would simply like to hone their riding skills. Regardless of your skill level you are sure to have an exhilarating time in the saddle and bond with your new equine friend
Perhaps stargazing isn’t something that immediately comes to mind when planning a vacation, but when was the last time you were able to gaze up into the night sky and be dazzled by hundreds of twinkling stars and constellations overhead, uncluttered by the profusion of city lights and dense pollution? Due to their often remote locations, guest ranches provide a unique opportunity to appreciate not only incredible scenery by day, but to be able to reflect upon the vastness and infinite beauty of the skies above. Starlit evenings like these are cherished moments to share with those dear to you.
A top 5 list of why you should book a guest ranch wouldn’t be complete without including 5 outstanding guest ranches to consider when booking your summer vacation this year:
Three Bars Guest & Cattle Ranch
This Canadian guest ranch, located in Super Natural British Columbia, is known as the adventure ranch of the Canadian Rockies. Guests can choose from a wide range of exciting activities like horseback riding, hiking, river rafting, mountain biking, and fly-fishing. Breathtaking scenery and world class lodgings await guests where western culture and modern conveniences are combined to feature 21 log cabins and a main guest house situated on 35,000 acres.
Three Bars Guest Ranch
Vista Verde Ranch
Experience the majestic Rocky Mountains at this Colorado guest ranch where guests will find a list of diverse activities to pick from as well as amazing food. Immerse yourself in their strong horse program or choose from a myriad of activities that promise to keep everyone entertained. Select either a cozy cabin or lodge room situated in the mountains while still enjoying AAA Four Diamond amenities and 1st class hospitality.
Vista Verde Ranch
Hawley Mountain Guest Ranch
Surrounded by acres upon acres of pristine wilderness this Montana guest ranch offers many memory-making activities all set in a wild and remote location. Float down the scenic Yellowstone River, try your hand at fly-fishing, hike unspoiled nature trails, sign up for an unforgettable jeep trip or explore the breathtaking scenery by horseback. At the end of the day settle into one of their comfortable cabins or lodge rooms for a relaxing night’s sleep.
Hawley Mountain Ranch
Spotted Horse Ranch
Wyoming has always been a popular destination for people seeking an authentic guest ranch experience and the Spotted Horse Ranch definitely delivers. Whether you choose to relax by the Hoback River or partake in one of the many activities available like horseback riding in the valley, white water rafting on the Snake River, fly-fishing the local streams or scenic rafting, each day will provide a variety of things to do. At night cozy cabins or spacious rooms embodied with the true spirit of the West will provide a relaxing atmosphere in which to lay your head and “perchance to dream” of more fun-filled days to come.
Spotted Horse Ranch
Western Pleasure Guest Ranch
This rustic Idaho guest ranch promises stunning scenic mountain views and a once in a lifetime dude ranch experience. Kayak on Idaho’s largest lake, sign up for an exciting white water rafting adventure, indulge in a day at The Spa at Seasons in Sandpoint or saddle up for a ride that will take you along beautiful ridges and valleys rich in history and spell-binding scenery. Warm hospitality, gourmet country meals coupled with the awe-inspiring vistas and heart-stopping activities would fit anyone’s vacation to do list.
Western Pleasure Guest Ranch
Just go for it this summer. Dare to be different! Choose a guest ranch for its unbeatable value, the chance to reconnect with nature and loved ones, an opportunity to learn new skills, take in unforgettable scenery from atop a horse, and marvel at an uncluttered night sky. A vacation at a guest ranch provides its guests with endless delights and fond memories long after your western experience has come to an end.
Let RanchSeeker help you find your ideal summer guest ranch vacation!