There are few places in the world where time seems reluctant to move forward. The Alisal Guest Ranch & Resort, nestled in the beautiful Santa Ynez Valley in the renowned Santa Barbara County wine country, is one such rare retreat.


The Alisal has been a hideaway for generations of families, couples and groups since first welcoming guests in 1946. Today, the romance and majesty of the ‘Old West’ remains in the ranch’s wide-open spaces and unspoiled natural beauty.


As California's premier guest ranch, the Alisal transports guests back to a bygone era. Set on a 10,000-acre working cattle ranch, this one-of-a-kind resort blends the best of nature with exceptional golf, horseback riding, tennis, fishing, first-class accommodations, spa services and fine dining.

Good to know

  • Works with travel agents?

    yes

Lowdown

  • Manager(s)

    Kathleen Cochran
  • Address

    1054 Alisal Road, Solvang, California, USA, 93463
  • Tel

    (800) 4-ALISAL
  • Fax

    (805) 688-2510
  • Capacity

    200
  • Open

    All year - view details
  • Nightly rate

    $550-800 - view details
  • Ranch Type

    Dude Ranch, Working Ranch, Luxury Ranch, Authentic, Hands-On
  • Great for

    Romance, Action & adventure, Peace & quiet, Diverse scenery, People of all ages

Email Ranch   View Website

Highs

  • 10,000 acres of privately-owned land in the beautiful California countryside
  • Wide range of package offerings, from mother/daughter getaways, to wine tasting weekends
  • Good-sized facility to accommodate large corporate retreats, with a variety of outdoor activities in an ideal climate
  • Family-oriented with a petting zoo for the children
  • Awarded as one of Travel and Leisure's 'Top 10 Guest Ranches in US' and as one of Sunset Magazine's 'Top Guest Ranches in California'

Lows

  • There are plenty of activities included in the price you can get involved in, however some aren't included in the basic cost, so please be sure to double-check with the accommodating staff - they'll be happy to advise you
  • The rooms are basic, however they are very clean, comfortable and relaxing
 

Summer Season Rates & Booking

  • Open

    All year
  • Nightly rate

    $550-800   view details on lodging rates
  • Nightly rate (non-rider)

    $550-800
  • Nightly rate (children)

    $60-115
  • Minimum stay

    2 days
  • Preferred arrival day

    Sun
  • Preferred depart day

    Fri
  • Booking Policy

  • Rates are based on double occupancy, two-night minimum is required, Saturday check-ins or check-outs are not permitted, rates are subject to change without notice. Advance Deposits are fully refundable up to 30 days prior to your date of arrival. Any cancellations, deletion of nights, and/or date changes, within 30 days, may result in a forfeiture of your deposit. All group reservations are subject to a six-month cancellation policy.
  • Included in your stay

  • meals, lodging, full breakfast and dinners
  • Extras

  • Other

    horseback riding

Winter Season Rates & Booking  

  • Open

    All year
  • Nightly rate

    $515-695   view details on lodging rates
  • Nightly rate (non-rider)

    $515-695
  • Nightly rate (children)

    $55-85
  • Minimum stay

    2 days
  • Preferred arrival day

    Sun
  • Preferred depart day

    Fri
  • Booking Policy

  • Rates are based on double occupancy, two-night minimum is required, Saturday check-ins or check-outs are not permitted, rates are subject to change without notice. Advance Deposits are fully refundable up to 30 days prior to your date of arrival. Any cancellations, deletion of nights, and/or date changes, within 30 days, may result in a forfeiture of your deposit. All group reservations are subject to a six-month cancellation policy.
  • Included FREE in your stay

  • meals, lodging, full breakfasts and dinners
  • Extras

  • Other

    horseback riding, lunch

Weather

Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec

Avg Temp (°F):

646566697072757775736965

Avg Rainfall (in):

4.144.683.59.77.35.09.01.03.29.521.482.63

Lowdown

  • Elevation

    505 ft.
 

Nearest Airports

  • Santa Barbara Airport, Santa Barbara

  • Nearest town / city

    Santa Barbara
  • Distance to ranch

    30 miles
  • Time to ranch

    45 mins
  • Airlines

    Delta, United, Skywest, Alaska, United Express, US Airways, American Airlines
  • Santa Maria Municipal, Santa Maria

  • Nearest town / city

    Santa Maria
  • Distance to ranch

    30 miles
  • Time to ranch

    30 mins
  • Airlines

    Allegiant

Nearest Town / City

  • Solvang

  • Population

    5332
  • Distance

    3 miles
  • Facilities

    grocery store, pharmacy, church, school, post office, medical clinic, hospital, bank, atm, gas station, museum
  • Shopping

    small hometown necessity shops, boutique shops, malls, western wear
  • Ranch shuttle

    Complimentary
 

Our riding stands out

  • Nice, gentle horses for all abilities and string of younger horses for advanced riders
  • Riding on 10,500 private acres in sunny California - rolling hills and oak trees, 100 acre lake, amazing vistas
  • Wranglers are chosen on their ability to entertain diverse age groups and interests

Our horses

  • guest horses

    100
  • horse types

    Quarterhorse, Draft Cross, Geldings

Our Riding

  • Scheduled rides

    Departure times are set each day, staggered by ability levels - i.e. 9am beg. ride takes off; 9:15 intermediate ride; 9:30 experienced ride
  • Guided rides

    Fully guided, we offer riding lessons, children's rides, and adult-oriented fun at specified times throughout the summer each week.
  • Program rides

    Our signature breakfast ride - Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday. Wagon ride to breakfast is available for non-riders! Intimate evening ride - Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday - Max of 15 riders

Good to know

  • Riding considerations

    Up to 225 lbs, no riding experience needed
  • Saddles

    Western

Lowdown

  • Type of riding

    Western Riding
  • Riding opportunities for

    Beginner, Intermediate, Experienced
  • Most riders are

    Intermediate
  • Rides are grouped by

    Ability, Rides tailored to guest requests, Families Ride Together
  • We group our rides by beginner, intermediate and advanced rides; families are encouraged to ride together if they would like (your pace will be dictated by the slowest rider). We ask guests to sign up for rides prior to arrival.
  • Max riders per ride

    7
  • Wranglers per ride

    1
  • Pace of ride

    Walk, Trot, Lope
  • We conduct an orientation where riders must demonstrate proficiency before going out on the trail. We offer faster rides for the more proficient rider - you will also be steering around obstacles at a faster pace.

Email Ranch  View Website

You'll enjoy

  • hours in the Saddle

    Morning - 2 hours, Afternoon - 2 hours
  • Our rides generally last approximately 1 1/2 hours.
  • Riding

    Openly through property, On specified trails
 

Riding Lessons

  • Details

    lessons are additional, basic riding lessons
  • Lessons given by

    wrangler
  • Lessons located

    in the arena
  • Daily, one-hour private riding lessons are offered and are available between 12:30 and 1:30pm. Lessons are recommended for infrequent riders who wish to join a higher level group ride and those who want to assess their riding ability in a safer setting. Lessons may be scheduled at the Barn 8:00-11:30am and 12:30-3:00pm. We ask that you please schedule your lessons at least one hour in advance.

Arena Work

  • Type

    outdoor arena
  • Activities

    penning
  • Join us for a Country Fair and Rodeo extravaganza every Wednesday during the Summer at 5:30pm. The Alisal wranglers demonstrate rodeo events including roping, barrel racing, team sorting and quick draw. We are offer a lesson from 12:30-1:30pm on rodeo day for those adults who wish to participate in the team sorting competition. We pair 2 guests with 2 wranglers for the competition. Throughout the summer, we keep track of this timed event and the group who has the best time at the end of the summer wins a Signature Alisal Belt Buckle! During the event, wranglers are in the arena holding herd to help the participants. You may be loping your horse at certain times during this event. We will have groups coming finishing the event in 30 seconds to a minute! After the rodeo, enjoy our Western-style BBQ at the arena complete with live country music and dancing.

Sample Riding Itinerary

  • Breakfast ride on Tuesday

    Rodeo Ride on Wednesday

    Breakfast Ride on Thursday

    Evening Ride on Friday

    Private Ride on Saturday

Setting

  • Private Land - 10,000-20,000 (acres)

  • The land is nestled in the Western passage through a temperate coastal valley, bound by a river on the northeast and a coastal mountain range on the southwest. The range barricades the coastal flow, producing warmer valley days and cooler valley nights. The adjacent river and seasonal streams that cross this land abound with annual runs of 10 pound steel head trout. The rolling hills are dotted with valley and coast live oaks. The moist glens and river banks, shadowed by the mountain backdrop, support healthy groves of western sycamores. Deer graze cautiously, fearing mountain lion, grizzly bear and coyote.
  • Public Land - more than 50k (acres)

  • Our ranch is nestled against the Los Padres National Forest, which includes most of the mountainous land along the California coast from Ventura to Monterey, extending inland. Elevations range from sea level to 8,831 feet. At times, we will venture into the forest for a trail ride.

When staying at Alisal you will enjoy our Modified American plan with breakfast and dinner included in the room rate.

Breakfast buffets are lavish, brimming with fresh fruit, homemade cinnamon rolls and your favorite morning entrees. A wide array of á la carte selections are also available. Enjoy lunch throughout the day at our poolside snack bar and two golf course grills. Dinners are a time to dress up and enjoy menus that change daily and include at least 10 entrees nightly.

Good to know

Alcohol

available for purchase

Snacking

BYO snack

Lowdown

  • Enjoy

    Gourmet, Ranch-style, Health oriented, BBQ is our specialty
  • Meals served

    family style, buffet style, meals roll with days activities, everyone eats together, children dine separately, scheduled meals
  • Enjoy dining in

    nature settings, patio, dining room (formal attire), bar & grille, lounge, private dinners
  • You'll definitely love

    farm fresh eggs, ranch garden, organic produce, locally grown produce, fresh daily bread, fresh daily desserts
  • Dietary restrictions catered for include

    lactose intolerant, vegans

Email Ranch  View Website

Guest Favorites

  • Saturday Night BBQ's poolside
  • Wednesday Night Rodeo and BBQ
  • Monday Night Lake Side Seafood Fest

Wine List Sample

  • Sanford
  • Melville
  • Foxen
 

Your Chef

  • Your dedicated chef is Chef Anthony Endy

  • Chef Endy started his career in 2001 wehre he spent two years at Chrf Rick's Ultimately Fine Foods, then a year at Historic Santa Maria Inn, before he joined Wine Cask restarant jin Los Olivos under chef Julie Robles. In 2005 Anthony returned to Los Olivos Wine Merchant & Cafe. A fews year later Anthony signed on as chef partner and manager of culinary development for the Paul Martin's American Grill brand in 2012. Here, he rose to be Director of Culinary and Corporate Chef.

Children at the Ranch

Great for children aged 3 and over



Alisal Barn Yard - Come by and meet all the little critters. See what special things we have planned for the day. Egg gathering available daily at 1:15pm.

Other activities include grooming, steer head roping lessons, chicken feeding and more. All ages welcome, however, we ask that adults accompany children during their visit to the Barn Yard.

Family Resort for Kids Lead Around - Parents lead small children on horseback around the corral.

Youth Programs and Activities - Arts and Crafts are available year round in the Laurel Room. We offer a variety of crafts that will please a wide range of ages. Please remember, we are not a babysitting service and ask that children under the age of six be accompanied by an adult.

Additional summer youth and teen programs include:

* Kiddie Korral (ages 3-6)
* MAC Club (ages 11-12)
* Teen Times (ages 13-17)

Detailed Activities

  • Arts & Crafts

    play-doh, coloring, sketching, Please see our summer activities guide on our website for daily activities.
  • Games

    scavenger/treasure hunts, board games, horseshoes, volleyball, badminton, ping pong, pool table
  • Riding based activities

    animal care, horse care, pony rides, trail riding

Babysitting

  • Available for children age

    0 to 17
  • Provided by

    Baby sitting preferred list is provided by Alisal and all arrangements must be made by guests.
  • Hourly prices from

    $15

Alisal has a rich ranch history dating back to 1810 where this land was originally used for hunting and gathering. Original inhabitants called this land "Nojoqui." To new arrivals it became known as "Alisal"(meaning grove of sycamores). Please make sure to visit our website(alisal.com) to view our in-depth ranch history.

Socially, the Alisal has consistently ranked as the top of the country's resorts. Clark Gable married Lady Silvia in Alisal's old library. A prominent Hollywood magazine featured a large front page story on Doris Day while on one of her regular visits to Alisal.

Lowdown

  • Ranch established

    1804
  • Guest ranch since

    1946

Our Staff

  • Dedication to guest experience
  • Understanding guest needs
  • Positivity about the Western Lifestyle
  • We have 20 wranglers on our staff, aged 21 to 50

Email Ranch  View Website

 
Head Wrangler Tony
Tony and his wife Colleen

Our Managers

  • Manager - Kathleen Cochran

  • With ranch since

    2016
  • Kathleen came to the Alisal from the Ranch at Paws Up. She has many years in Hotel Management across the US.

Rooms & Rates

  • Room type | nameSummer ratesWinter rates

  • Lodge | Large Studio Room$600$600

    • Description

      Large studio room with king or twin beds. Items Included: full breakfast and dinner for two people per night. Additional amenities: iron and board, clock radio, coffee maker and coffee.
    • Rooms

      8
    • Max occupancy

      2
    • Prices listed are

      per couple
    • Minimum stay

      3 nights
    • Bathrooms

      Private bathroom
    • Amenities

      fridge, hair dryer, seating area, wood fireplace
  • Lodge | Deluxe Studio with Patio$625$625

    • Description

      Large studio room with king and outside patio. Items Included: full breakfast and dinner for two people per night. Additional amenities: iron and board, clock radio, coffee maker and coffee.
    • Rooms

      28
    • Max occupancy

      2
    • Prices listed are

      per couple
    • Minimum stay

      3 nights
    • Bathrooms

      Private bathroom
    • Amenities

      fridge, hair dryer, seating area, wood fireplace
  • Lodge | One Bedroom Suite$675$675

    • Description

      Large bedroom with king bed, spacious sitting room with studio beds. Items Included: full breakfast and dinner for two people per night. Additional amenities: iron and board, clock radio, coffee maker and coffee. Enjoy spacious, high-beamed ceilings.
    • Rooms

      18
    • Max occupancy

      2
    • Prices listed are

      per couple
    • Minimum stay

      3 nights
    • Bathrooms

      Private bathroom
    • Amenities

      mini-bar, fridge, hair dryer, seating area, plush bathrobes, wood fireplace
  • Lodge | Deluxe Suite$725$725

    • Description

      Large bedroom with king bed, spacious sitting room, two full baths and wet bar. Items Included: full breakfast and dinner for two people per night. Additional amenities: iron and board, clock radio, coffee maker and coffee. Enjoy open, high-beamed ceilings.
    • Rooms

      12
    • Max occupancy

      2
    • Prices listed are

      per couple
    • Minimum stay

      3 nights
    • Bathrooms

      Private bathroom
    • Amenities

      mini-bar, fridge, hair dryer, seating area, wood fireplace
  • Lodge | Accommodations Overview$775$775

    • Description

      Seventy-three Guest units decorated in classic California ranch design are configured in either comfortable studios or spacious one bedroom suites. There are no in-room TVs or telephones. If you need to make a phone call, just stop by or call the front desk from any house phone. Cellular reception is limited at the Alisal. Verizon is the only carrier that provides good coverage in the immediate vicinity of the Ranch. Public telephones and televisions are located throughout the property. Wireless high-speed Internet access is available.
    • Rooms

      7
    • Max occupancy

      146
    • Prices listed are

      per couple
    • Minimum stay

      3 nights
    • Bathrooms

      Private bathroom
    • Amenities

      fridge, hair dryer, seating area, plush bathrobes, wood fireplace

Services

Communications

  • wireless internet
  • telephone
  • Business Services

    • Executive business center
    • Conference center
    • computer and fax hookups
    • printers
    • common computer
    • Cell Networks

      • verizon
      • cell service is sporadic

Additional Services

  • Spa

    relaxation massage, deep tissue massage, rock treatments, couples massage, scrubs, manicures, facials, pedicures. Exclusive Therapeutic Mud and Herb Wraps
  • Corporate Retreats

    For groups of 100 & over. Alisal is among the West’s most sought-after destinations for group meetings and corporate retreats. Our secluded locale and excellent facilities make meeting here both a relaxing and productive experience.
  • Weddings

    We can cater for groups of 100 & over. Please contact our Conference Service Director directly for wedding guidelines.

Onsite

Outdoor Activities

  • mountain biking
  • tennis
  • Golf - 18 hole course
  • wagon rides
  • bird watching
  • Archery, Air-Rifle, Nature Walks

Water based Activities

  • outdoor pool
  • hot tub
  • lake water sports
  • Additional Activities

    • There is plenty of acreage to simply relax and enjoy time with family.

Good to know

  • You can borrow

    Riding helmets
 

Fishing & Wildlife

  • Fishing

  • Types of fishing

    spin, fly, lake, equipment available, guided non-inclusive, unguided, instruction available
  • The Alisal lake is teeming with bass and bluegill ready to be landed by rod and reel or fly. We offer private guided excursions during early morning or late evening hours, since feeding habits of different fish vary. If you wish to hone your angling skills, our lake staff is glad to provide traditional fishing and fly fishing pointers or lessons
    Fishing

    Fishing on Alisal Lake is reserved for guests of the Ranch exclusively. All bass are natural spawn wild fish and fishing is "catch and release." This combination keeps the lake and the fish unstressed and provides some of the best bass fishing in the state.


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