The Next Frontier of Girls’ Trips is a Little Bit Country at These 8 Luxe Western Ranches
Before you book that flight to the Caribbean for your next girls’ trip, you’d be wise to consider another travel option for resetting your mind and recharging your batteries. Many areas of the American West are a vast, open, and sparsely populated, which makes a country western ranch vacation a great setting for enjoying some R and R.
1. Magee Homestead in Saratoga, Wyoming
At this adults-only ranch, a Relais & Chateaux property, you won’t really be roughing it. Located on 7,000 acres in Saratoga, Wyoming, the upscale all-inclusive experience is unlike the one you might have had for spring break, with weak drinks and mediocre food. (To be fair, along with the quality boost, you’ll also notice a price surge, with room rates starting at $1,000 per person per night.)
With a greenhouse, ranch-raised Wagyu beef on-site, plus various winemakers holding residencies, every meal will be memorable. Activities like horseback riding (for all levels), ATV experiences in the nearby Medicine Bow National Forest, rock climbing, mountain biking, fly fishing, and more are also available. Essentially, you’re much more likely to run out of time than things to do and adventures to take at this respite.
2. Ted Turner Reserves in Raton, New Mexico
While there are four properties in the “reserve” collection with locations throughout New Mexico, Vermejo in the northeast is the one to visit in order to be closer to Mother Earth. You’ll find 1,200-plus wild bison roaming the property’s more than half a million (!) acres. Animal lovers would be wise to sign up for Wildlife Tours, where guests set out with guides in the later afternoon to spot mule, deer, wild horses, and even mountain lions. Protecting the wildlife and stunning scenery is built into this luxury eco-tourism destination, and the efforts of the Turner Endangered Species Fund has resulted in the restoration and preservation of much of the wildlife you’ll see on property.
Bonus: This western ranch, also inclusive of meals and select activities with rates starting at $1,300 per night per double occupancy, is open year-round, meaning there are both summer adventures (hiking and horseback riding, among others) and winter activities on offer. In the colder months, try ice fishing and snowshoeing, then warm up at the spa or at the stove for cooking classes.
3. Tanque Verde Ranch in Tucson, Arizona
This country western locale is surrounded by arid, desert landscape just waiting for you to explore. Established in 1868, the ranch is an old-timer, but you’ll be more than happy with the comfortable, present-day accommodations, which start at $135 per night. For a truly authentic experience, sign up for the penning activity. You’ll saddle up, get into groups, then head out to the nearby penning ring to attempt to corral young calves into their pen.
If sleeping under the stars is more your vibe, opt for a rental from $120 per night at Under Canvas Tucson, which is adjacent to the ranch but still offers access to all its amenities. With luxury tents (king-size bed, wood burning stove, some with private baths) surrounded by brush, you’re not far from the ranch’s main buildings, but just removed enough to hear the javelinas at night.
4. The Home Ranch in Clark, Colorado
Another Relais & Chateaux all-inclusive property—with rates starting at $845 for double occupancy in the winter season—this 14-room ranch is intimate and quiet. In the summer, you can take part in activities such as horseback riding, sing-alongs, and barn dances with live music. And fall offers adults-only programming such as “Yoga and Horse and Bikes and Brews.”