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“Wonderful intergenerational experience!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Vision Quest Safari Bed & Breakfast

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Vision Quest Safari Bed & Breakfast
400 River Road, Salinas, CA 93908   |  
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Hotel amenities
Ranked #1 of 4 Salinas B&B and Inns
GreenLeadersSilver level
Carmel, California
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
“Wonderful intergenerational experience!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 3, 2013

My daughter, 2 8yr. old granddaughters and I had a fabulous experience at Vision Quest! After check-in, we enjoyed the walkabout past our bungalow of the young white Siberian tiger and the lynx who demanded to be brought in a cart......he doesn't love walking! Then we did Crunch Time, which was a delightful experience, feeding the BIG cats. Finally, that eve. we took part in putting Butch and 2 other elephants to bed with dinner for them and snacks which they took from our hands. Off to a close restaurant for dinner and bedtime and games in our tent bungalow which had all the comforts of home! The next morning, an elephant actually brought our breakfast (most generous) to the viewing deck of our bungalow. What fabulous memories we made!!!!!!
Mary Condry.... Carmel

  • Stayed November 2013, 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
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273 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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    3
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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (118)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
San Diego, California
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 3, 2013

We booked our trip starting with the Pachyderm Package. The tour lasted two hours and was wonderful to get one-on-one experience with Butch, the elephant. The tour guide was very knowledgeable and it was obvious that all the animals are well cared for. There was an obvious bond between all the handlers and the animals. We stayed in the Big Cat tent. It was very comfortable. We loved the "tent" experience! Hearing the animals at night was very very cool. We also did Crunchtime and Butch's Bedtime. VERY WORTHWHILE! Breakfast in the morning was served by an elephant. The staff was more than happy to take lots of pictures during our whole stay. I would have to say that the whole experience was a check-off on my Bucket List.

Stayed November 2013, traveled as a couple
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
california USA
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 3, 2013

What a lovely surprise. We stayed in a cabin overlooking the elephants. We had a lovely tent, a "parade" of (only 2) animals that came by in the evening, we did the evening big cat feed and elephant feed, we were served a huge lovely breakfast by the trainer (with elephant in tow) and then went on the public tour. I brought 3 kids, ages 10, 12, 13.

I was a safari guide in Kenya and majored in African studies. I am never happier than when I'm there. This is the closest I've come (much better than Safari West in Santa Rosa but in fairness I didn't spend the night there) to that peaceful joy that I have when I'm there. I plan to go back for my anniversary. It's hard to explain what I loved so much- the quiet, the view reading a book and overlooking the elephants and lovely valley, the nice breakfast and well-appointed tent room, being able to touch and feed an African elephant (which I've never done before), a quiet night without wifi with my kids...? I also saw some animals I had never even heard of before, and that's hard to do with me!

We also took advantage of walking around and had elephants and the ostrich come over to us at the fence. We got to look in their eyes as they begged for greenery. I think I would have liked it less if we were not allowed to walk around that back fenceline. the cat cages are too small, they say all of the cats will be moved to 1/4 acre runs within 14 months. I hope so.

It was ideal for me. I was not a big fan of the Italian restaurant down the street. The nearby "town" is disappointing. So stay on the ranch, relax and soak in the sun.

Room Tip: Cabin #4 was ours, nice view and location.
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  • Stayed November 2013, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 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.
San Francisco, California
1 review
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed November 29, 2013

grudging attitudes, unpleasant and hurrying through the telephone inquiry without courtesy. we called the manger (self-acclaimed "owner") who did not even apologize but saying "they are very busy...I will look into it, etc".

all this happened even before our trip started - how could they convince us we have the best service during the trip?

please be nicer to every customer, not only for business and money, but for making people smile.

bless you.

  • Stayed November 2013, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
FromOurManagement, Owner at Vision Quest Safari Bed & Breakfast, responded to this review, November 30, 2013
We regret that some customers demand more time on the telephone than we can afford to dedicate in the interest of fairness to other customers. While doing so, there are others on hold or awaiting return calls. These customers are both frustrated and disappointed for they feel they are unable to achieve the dates they hope to achieve because of our inability to return their calls more quickly. In truth, they might be correct so my staff is instructed to handle calls courteously yet promptly.

In some cases, anything short of a 20 minute phone call is unacceptable to the individual, taking valuable time away from our animals and our other customers, only to review information that is clearly posted on our website. In this case, our customer was unhappy with our inability to stay on the line with them while they surfed our website during their call. They felt Heather's request for them to call back after doing so and making the many decisions they were contemplating was inappropriate. They were also upset that I did not make Heather apologize immediately or apologize on her behalf for her demeanor, prior to discussing her side of the matter with her. Our staff works very hard and deserve much more respect.

Having spoke to this individual myself, I do remember explaining the above to him and apologizing for our inability to stay on the phone longer. I also told him that I would confer with Heather to get her input on the transaction, again, the best I could do in the interest of fairness. I regret that some feel the need to use such a "medium" to punish a facility, regardless of their true experience which they neglected to even mention. It brings harm to both the facility and the animals in the long run.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Folsom, California, United States
Top Contributor
80 reviews 80 reviews
16 hotel reviews
Reviews in 29 cities Reviews in 29 cities
65 helpful votes 65 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 27, 2013

We had a great stay at the B&B. We used the recent groupon with no problem. Stayed over a Thursday night. Took the one hour tour the day we arrived--started at 1 pm. When we finished the tour our room was ready for check in. So, it's not a huge place and the cages are small, but why do animals need large spaces--to hunt. Because these animals are fed on a regular basis, they really don't need much space at all. Large cats in the wild spend most their time conserving their energy--sleeping--for the next hunt. The animals are all well cared for and happy. The docents are knowledgable and appear to have personal relationships with all the animals. The one downside I would say is the tour is rushed to fit in the one hour window. Guests are not allowed to enjoy the property outside of the tour. Our tent, the Big Cat House, we perfectly located right in front of the elephant compound. We could also see into the zoo property. As promised, between 3 and 4 two animals were walked around the property and right up to our tent. It was fun to see the animals, but again, I would say it felt a little rushed. We signed up for two additional tours--feeding the cats and putting the elephants to bed. Highly recommend both. We fed the lynx, the lion, and the tiger and it was really interesting to see how varied the behaviors were. Immediately after the cats, we went into the barn with three elephants and watched them eat their elephant chow and then we fed them a snack of carrots. It was amazing to get so up-close and personal with such majestic animals. We absolutely loved the tours. It gets dark early in winter, so right after feeding the elephants we returned to our tent and it was dark. Not much to do on the property after the sun goes down, so you can go into town or do like we did and pack a picnic dinner and rent a couple movies (dvd player in room) and enjoy the atmosphere. The lion roared several times throughout the night and we just loved it! In the morning, an elephant came around and delivered a delicious breakfast consisting of fruit, yogurt, bagels, and pastries. We were able to feed the elephant a snack as well, while the handler took many pictures of us on our porch feeding her. It was a great experience. We really enjoyed the entire trip.

  • Stayed November 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 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
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chicago, Illinois
Contributor
14 reviews 14 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
18 helpful votes 18 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 12, 2013 via mobile

We stayed here for one night to celebrate my son's 8th birthday. We live in the Bay Area and loved the feeling that we were "away from it all". We are surprised none of our friends have heard of this place...so we are spreading the word. Our room (The Bear Den) was clean, fairly spacious and nicely decorated. My 2 sons loved the mosquito nets. We brought Legos, snacks and games to pass the time while waiting for our animal visitors. A highlight was feeding the elephants! We did the free tour, fed the big cats tour (crunch time) & fed the elephant tour. We recommend adding extra tours, and the elephant one was our favorite! The continental breakfast was plentiful with fresh croissants, fruit, yogurt and juice. It exceeded our expectations! I read reviews before booking and I agree that the staff may be more animal specialists than hospitality experts but everyone was friendly and efficient. Animals arrived as expected and tours ran on time. None of the employees were rude to people on the tour, despite some people on the public tour with toddlers, who had to be told more than once to keep their children from leaning over the chain toward the wild animals' cage. Each room has a fridge stocked with juice & water and a coffee/tea maker. I brought out dinner with us so we could fully enjoy our overnight stay. I think all the cabins have a equally good location. We couldn't see the elephant enclosure from our deck but it was a short walk over to a public deck to see them.

  • Stayed November 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Gilroy
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 6, 2013

I was looking for something unique to celebrate my friend's 70th birthday. She is well traveled and adventurous.
I would say the "Bedding Down of the Elephants" and "Crunch Time" is a must. The personalities of the animals really come alive during their feeding.
The staff is extremely passionate and knowledgable and I left knowing those animals were well taken care of and loved.
Vision Quest B & B exceeded our expectations. The accommodations were warm and comfortable. As I stood on my deck looking out at the elephants, zebra, water buffalo, and ostriches, the experience felt as if I was thousands of miles from a city. Worth the cost!

Room Tip: Tent close to elephant den for great viewing
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  • Stayed October 2013, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Vision Quest Safari Bed & Breakfast

Address: 400 River Road, Salinas, CA 93908
Phone Number:
Location: United States > California > Salinas
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 4 B&Bs / Inns in Salinas
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 8
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Listen to the lions and tigers roaring only yards away from your authentic African style bungalow...go on an African Safari in Monterey! ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Vision Quest Safari Bed And Breakfast
Vision Quest Safari Hotel Salinas

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