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“Old-fashioned Family Fun” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Rankin Ranch

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Rankin Ranch
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23500 Walkers Basin Road, Caliente, CA 93518   |  
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Los Angeles
Senior Contributor
21 reviews 21 reviews
13 hotel reviews
Reviews in 16 cities Reviews in 16 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
“Old-fashioned Family Fun”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 20, 2011

Our family has visited Rankin Ranch (grandparents, parents, chuildren) for nine years straight. Not only that, but my husband used to vacation here as a child. I agree with everything that the other reviewers have said about friendliness, complete relaxation and natural beauty. The magic of this place is that the simpler things become fun. Suddenly, children are gloriously happy making little boats to sail on the creek, your teenager wants to play horseshoes with you, and you find yourself excited over a jugsaw puzzle.
Here are a few additional thoughts: Keep in mind that children have to be six years old to ride. The younger ones will still be busy and happy, but they may be envious of older siblings. Teens who haven't grown up visiting the ranch might find the pace too slow, and you don't see many couples without children. The food is tasty, as others have said, but don't expect gourmet; it is old fashioned, hearty fare. The cabins are clean and comfortable, and perhaps in need of updating...except that one of the many reasons that people love Rankin Ranch is that you can come back year after year, and it never changes.

Room Tip: Chimo cabin is newer and bigger, and has a great view, though a longer walk to meals and activities.
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  • Stayed April 2011, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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49 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (8)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Any
English first
Welwyn Garden City, United Kingdom
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 30, 2011

Thanks to everyone at Rankin for making our stay so memorable. We stayed for 3 nights in August 2011 with 2 children (under 10). The horse riding and activities for the kids were excellent. We really enjoyed everything, but especially the reptile show, evening BBQ, the lovely warm swimming pool, the petting farm, the beautiful scenery and relaxing atmosphere - we would love to return one day

  • Stayed August 2011, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Torrance, California
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 25, 2011

This was our first time at the Ranch and we had a wonderful time. Definitely geared towards families. Best kids club ever. Not a lot by way of frills, but if you are looking for a real ranch experience with great hospitality, I would recommend this place to anyone. The Rankins make you feel like you have know them all your life. They call you by name and welcome you into their ranch like you are part of their family.
The ranch is beautiful. The rooms are not fancy but clean and neat. We had some problems with hot water in our cabin & loud toilet which was a little disappointing but Sarah Rankin did offer to move us I just didn't want to move the kids. The breakfast, lunch and dinner was great. The adult appetizer was always the same amazing guacamole. Although excellent I would have liked a bit more variety there. You can't find a more customer service oriented staff and nicer bunch of people. I would recommend this place to anyone.

  • Stayed August 2011, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Orange County, CA
Senior Contributor
33 reviews 33 reviews
19 hotel reviews
Reviews in 17 cities Reviews in 17 cities
19 helpful votes 19 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 17, 2011

This was our second visit to Rankin Ranch. Our first was in 2005, our most recent trip was during the 4th of July weekend. Rankin is a wonderful place to relax and be pampered. The food is delicious and plentiful, the staff (most of which is the Rankin family) is friendly and the grounds are beautiful. If you have young children (under 12) they will have a blast with the children's program. They keep the little ones busy. For older kids and adults there is a swimming pool, foosball table, pool table, shuffle board, ping pong table and various sports equipment and board games available. And of course there is horseback riding (twice a day) for everyone.

For our first visit, our kids were young enough to enjoy the children's program (and enjoy they did!). We were concerned about how much fun they'd have on their own as teenagers. But at least for this 4th of July weekend there was no reason to be concerned. They made friends with some other teens and found fun not only with the items available to them but also by joining in with the younger kids once in a while. Fortunately, the children's counselor was very accommodating to the teenagers and welcomed them in to their activities. I think flexibility in their schedule based on the interest of their guests is a big plus for the Rankin's.

The evening activities are filled with organized activities for the entire family. We had fun "minute to win it games", bingo and square dancing. We also enjoyed a hay ride to the meadow for a BBQ lunch followed by a horseshoe tournament. But the real gem for the 4th of July was the crazy games in the afternoon that brought everyone together followed by a beautiful outdoor BBQ dinner. What a wonderful way to spend the holiday.

Room Tip: It only costs a little more to put your kids in an adjoining cabin....money well spent. Extra room...
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  • Stayed July 2011, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sherman Oaks
Senior Contributor
39 reviews 39 reviews
15 hotel reviews
Reviews in 21 cities Reviews in 21 cities
38 helpful votes 38 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 16, 2011

To update my earlier review I wanted to share how wonderful the Rankins were a month ago when I celebrated my 60th birthday at the ranch. I had invited around 25 people to come up to the ranch for the Sunday barbecue/hayride and to spend the afternoon celebrating. 10 of the guests were staying over at least Sunday night, the rest were just coming up for the day on Sunday. Sunday morning dawned dreary, chilly and a bit damp and the Rankins were afraid that heading to the meadow for the barbecue would be a miserable experience for all. I let my friends know that we might not be doing the hayride/barbecue and would just be eating in the dining room and if they didn't want to make the 2+ hour drive I'd fully understand. The Rankins not only arranged for a hayride up to the family cemetery for my guests and the others staying at the ranch but also conducted a tour of the original ranch house and shared the history of the ranch with all my friends. They also had a birthday cake made for my party and went out of their way to help my friends set up the party in the rec room.

One other piece of information to share - this was our first time staying in the Chimo deluxe room. As my friends and I said, once you go Chimo you can't go back. We loved the cabins, have stayed there for 12 plus years very comfortably. But just the view alone is worth the extra money the Chimo costs, much less the refrigerator, microwave, extra space, two convertible sofas, etc. etc. etc.

  • Stayed May 2011, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cheshire.
Senior Contributor
34 reviews 34 reviews
16 hotel reviews
Reviews in 24 cities Reviews in 24 cities
39 helpful votes 39 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 9, 2011

I don't know where to start! Everything was perfect. The people, the place, the Rankin family & helpers, the horses, the peace & quiet. We didn't know what to expect, and could not have been more impressed. We are not riders, but had fantastic times going into the canyons,places we would not normailly see. Our 8 year old daughter chose here over Disney, good decision.We were the only Brits there, and it felt good to be seeing some "real" America after LA. We had the best nights sleep on the ranch over the rest of our 3 week trip to California. i was surprised to be emotional when it was time to leave. I really did not want to go. It felt like leaving friends. I hope we can make it back one day.I also hope the Ranch never changes. It is the perfect size now, the right amount of people to get to know. i hope they don't expand.

  • Stayed April 2011, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ohio
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 27, 2011

My title isn't overstating how I feel about Rankin Ranch. It truly is my most favorite place to be, and the place I close my eyes and think about whenever I'm feeling stressed. I started visiting Rankin Ranch each Summer when I was 10 years old, and today, at age 37, I still cry my eyes out when it's time to say goodbye and go home again. The Rankin family has created a truly magical experience for children and grown-ups alike. The kids program is so much fun and children get to experience all kinds of nature and activities they could never do at home. The horses are magnificent and the trails and meadow rides are breathtaking. In all my years of visiting the Ranch, I have never met a family who didn't want to come back again, or who wasn't already there for a 2nd, 10th, or 20th visit!!

  • Stayed August 2010, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Rankin Ranch

Address: 23500 Walkers Basin Road, Caliente, CA 93518
Phone Number:
Location: United States > California > Caliente
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Specialty Lodging in Caliente
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 14
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Quarter Circle U Rankin Ranch is truly a well kept secret, located deep in California's Tehachapi Mountains. It has been a working cattle ranch since the days of the Civil War, and the Rankin family still raises White Face Hereford cattle just as their ancestors did over 150 years ago. Guests travel from across the United States and around the world visit this guest ranch. They enjoy the fact that it is a "real" working ranch, and are fascinated with its century old history. Many guests emphasize the importance of the "family" atmosphere; meeting and visiting with Rankin family members is routine as they all live right on the ranch...4Th, 5th and 6th generations. "Western hospitality" is part of your package! The favorite activity at the ranch has always been the horseback riding. We have both adult and children's rides (riding starts at age six) which explore our meadows, Walker's Basin Creek, and mountain ridges overlooking our beautiful little valley. The guided trail rides are about one hour long and all levels of riders are welcome. Parents and grandparents especially appreciate the supervised children's program for ages 4-11 during Spring Break and the summer months. They enjoy arts and crafts, hikes, and visits to the animal farm. Other ranch activities include swimming, hiking, fishing (trout stocked pond), shuffleboard, ping pong, recreation room and planned evening activities. Adventure West...Kidstuff says, "A full operation cattle ranch, Rankin offers a fun filled, down home kind of vacation, complete with tradition, history and diversions for both young and old." ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Rankin Ranch Hotel Caliente

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