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“VIP tour experience of a lifetime”
Review of Warm Springs Ranch

Warm Springs Ranch
Ranked #2 of 19 things to do in Boonville
Certificate of Excellence
Attraction details
Reviewed July 14, 2013

We drove all the ways to Boonville from St. Louis on the Fourth of July for the VIP tour. My review is of this tour, but there is also a regular tour that runs daily that is shorter but also looked very good.

First this is a working breeding ranch. This is a guest opportunity to step into the real life day to day of the Budweiser Clydesdales and their caretakers and trainers.

I was surprised at how nondescript the entry of this facility was. It's only five minutes off the interstate but there are no signs or marketing billboards for it's existence. You drive up to a gated and secured entry which has a teeny sign that tours will start a few minutes before their appointed time so wait until then.

If you want to eat before your tour, either stop in Columbia on your way or you have to go past to Boonville. There is not a fancy snack bar or anything at the ranch (remember it's a working facility).

We arrived a few minutes before our VIP tour. There is one ViP tour a day on each day the ranch is open, at 1 PM. We were met on a four wheeler by Erica who opened the gate and had us follow her down the winding road towards the barn. We could glimpse some of the magnificent Clydesdales at this point but little did we know how close we would get!

We were welcomed warmly by everyone. We were the only outsiders on the farm at this point, got our hat and wristband, paid for our tour, and got ready to go. The VIP tour is $500 and just FYI this is the only Budweiser facility that doesn't take Amex, but the reservations hotline did not know that,

Back outside, we hopped aboard our own hay ride behind a John Deere, with Erica as our tour guide and one of the trainers John wasour driver, She was really fabulous, and admitted about halfway through that it was her first VIP tour solo, but we sure didnt know it. See answered so many questions about the ranch and the horses, the staff, the routines, just everything.

On the tractor, we went in and out of each pasture, which had different combinations of mares or mares/foals in each one. The first was young mares who had not had a baby yet. They strolled up to the wagon very interested, and of course we got our first experience petting them. They were very interested in the hay bales we were sitting on! The second pasture was mares who are pregnant, and these were equally happy to greet us and let us scratch their ears or foreheads. One kind of laid his whole head on my shoulder and she let me reach under her and scratch the other side of her head.

The last pasture was the mares with the little foals around three months. They also came up to the wagon and one silly one couldn't figure out how to get his head out of the rails! We learned that they don't hand feed any Clydesdale because they are in public so much that they don't want the animal to learn that hands = food.

Then back to the area of the barn where we walked throughout, past each stallion stall, and watched Duke get a thorough vacuuming, which he enjoyed! At this point we also met John Soto, who is the farm manager and the inspiration for this years' Super Bowl commerical. He is the nicest and most down to earth guy you could ever meet,

One of the best parts was meeting the mommas and the new babies (under a month old) who were still in the barn. Wewere able to rub their heads and itch their ears. The final part was a great photo with Duke in front of one of the Budweiser wagons.

All in all an amazing experience that I would highly recommend!

4  Thank wrensaver
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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"budweiser clydesdales"
in 39 reviews
"breeding facility"
in 14 reviews
"super bowl"
in 11 reviews
"vip tour"
in 10 reviews
"great tour"
in 22 reviews
"clydesdale horses"
in 21 reviews
"gentle giants"
in 6 reviews
"majestic animals"
in 3 reviews
"tour guides were very knowledgeable"
in 4 reviews
"central missouri"
in 5 reviews
"gift shop"
in 21 reviews
"love horses"
in 4 reviews
"grant's farm"
in 13 reviews
"tour group"
in 7 reviews
"free beer"
in 16 reviews
"famous clydesdales"
in 6 reviews
"day trip"
in 10 reviews
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277 - 281 of 297 reviews

Reviewed July 10, 2013

If you in the area this is a great place to check out. We called but wasn't able to get in, We stopped in the Boonville Visitor Center and they called and they was able to take two more. We're so happy we got to see this place, if you have kids they'll love it.

1  Thank 541cloran
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 2, 2013

My wife booked this tour because see loves the Clydesdales horses. This is one of the three farms were you can book a tour. We arrived about a half a hour before the start of the 10:00 am tour. The guide arrived 20 minutes before the tour at the gate to let us and 60 other guest to the farm. The facility is magnificent, very clean and well groomed in all aspects. The horses were beautiful, and so big up close, there was enough time to make foto's up close. The tour guides were very informative, and welcomed all questions. This facility is for breeding only. You will get 2 free Budweiser at the end as well.

7  Thank EdwinOM
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 8, 2013

We had reservations for 10 a.m. tour and keep in mind that is the only way you will get in. We were greeted warmly at the gate and directed where to go. The wait allows you to take in the scenery and the horses in pasture. Time for a scenic shot! The tour lasts about 90 minutes with the chance to pet a few horses. The barns are sparkling clean. The tour guides are knowledgeable and pleasant. They love to answer questions after their presentations in each area. We were lucky enough to see a foal who had just been born 3 days earlier. Also the 2 younger horses who starred in the Super Bowl ad were outside for viewing and petting. It is important to follow the rules in regards to where you can go and who you can pet. There are plenty of opportuniites. Those over 21 are allowed 2 free Budweiser(not light) beers at the end of the tour.

12  Thank runandbike
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed November 18, 2012

This tour is not advertised much, we found out about it thru a little piece on our local news in Kansas City. We were in Boonville for the weekend, and decided to check it out. You do have to make reservations 24 hours in advance on their website, and tours are limited to about 50 people. In fact, the time we wanted was sold out, but we were able to get on another one on that day. The facility is magnificent, very clean and well groomed in all aspects. The horses were beautiful, and so big up close. We were able to see a mare and foal, the youngest one they had, which was born in the spring. I think a prime time to go would be earlier in the summer, when they would have more young foals. The tour guides were very informative, and welcomed all questions. The technology used to run the breeding operation was pretty impressive. This is the only breeding facility for the whole country, we were surprised to find such an operation hidden away in central Missouri. Definitely worth your time, no matter your interest - horses, Clydesdales, Budweiser, animal husbandry in general! The free Budweiser sample at the end was a nice perk, as well.

5  Thank sbk117
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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