We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.
The latest reviews. The lowest prices. The perfect place to shop for hotels.

“Activities were great! Food was a problem....” 3 of 5 bubbles
Review of Rocking Horse Ranch Resort

We can't find prices for this hotel
Our online travel partners don't provide prices for this hotel, but we can search other options in Highland
Check In mm/dd/yyyy Check Out mm/dd/yyyy
Rocking Horse Ranch Resort
Ranked #1 of 5 Hotels in Highland
Certificate of Excellence
New York City, New York
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“Activities were great! Food was a problem....”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 17, 2012

My extended family visited Rocking Horse Ranch in August. Our children really enjoyed the indoor water park and pool along with the fun barn and outdoor activities. The evening shows were entertaining and they had a ball at the kid dance parties.

I must say that our group was very disappointed with the food. The food was not hot when eating from the buffet and this was true of the dinner which was served to us. There were no flames under the buffet trays to keep the food warm so that contributed to the problem. The dinner choices were okay but the quality of the food was generally below par for most of the meals. You would expect this kind of food at an obscure highway diner. I must admit that many of us did not eat our meals on some of the nights and opted for a safe dessert instead. The desserts were very good! Considering the reputation of Rocking Horse with nearly five star trip advisor rating with five star prices...this was unacceptable. We did contact the management with regard to our concerns as I am sure that there will be a response by the owner indicating that we should have done so. In the meantime, the management's time would be well spent allocating more time and money to food quality and preparation. Come on guys, you really need to step this up quite a few notches for the prices you are charging!!!

Room Tip: Main Lodge all the way!
See more room tips
  • Stayed August 2012, traveled with family
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
4 Thank Mary0722
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
rockinghorseranch, Owner at Rocking Horse Ranch Resort, responded to this review, September 18, 2012
Hi Mary,

Thank you, I especially appreciate your positive comments about the desserts and activities.

There are 5 to 6 entrees on the menu nightly on a 7 night rotation. So, without knowing the specific dinner choices of your meals, yes, I do have to say "please call or e-mail me so I may learn more." You also said, "the food was generally below par for most of the meals." Sounds like we did have a mini success or two in meeting your expectations. It is very important to know what meals we did prepare to your liking. I’m not sure why you would eat only dessert when our management team offered to prepare anything from an omelet to a steak to your liking. Regarding the breakfast and lunch buffets, you are correct, there are no flames under the dishes. Rather, they are electric heat (which are inspected before every meal).

We do have very exciting plans in store for our dining services, including expanding the dining room with featured interactive cook stations.

I do take great pride in our facilities and with your feedback, I will absolutely work harder, especially in our dining operations.

Of course I have to end with… If you do feel like calling me, please do so. I am here. Actually, many folks have returned calls and you'd be very surprised of the relationships we’ve built!

Steve, Owner
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a Review

1,124 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    757
    261
    66
    17
    23
See reviews for
905
14
3
7
Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (336)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Port Jervis, New York, United States
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 14, 2012

This was our 9th year and number 10 is already booked for next August! There was a total of 17 in our group ranging in age from 5 to 80 and we all had a great time! The staff is incredible - so attentive, polite, friendly and helpful! It was a pleasure to meet the owner, Steve. He chatted with our group and even asked for feedback regarding some ideas he's been considering for the Ranch. He is 100% hands-on and was on site our entire stay. The grounds are beautiful, clean and well-maintained. The rooms are clean, comfortable and all bathrooms in the main lodge have been nicely redone. The food is plentiful and delicous - you will never go hungry at RHR! There was some sort of cocktail hour each afternoon of our stay. We really enjoyed the outdoor BBQ lunches (complete with beer on tap and a country band). The activities are endless! Horseback riding is probably our favorite and I can't say enough great things about the wranglers, as they're top-notch! The nightly entertainment is always enjoyable and the DJ spins tunes throughout the evening. My kids love the pools and awesome waterslide! I could go on and on all day about how wonderful this place is - we're all sad when it's time to leave and can't wait for our next visit! I see some reviewers complaining about the cost, but I think it's worth every single penny and then some - the memories we make at RHR are priceless! Keep up the good work, Steve!

The staff goes above and beyond to ensure a fabulous stay for all of the guests! Jessica is the best bartender ever, Laura is a super friendly wrangler, I enjoyed chatting with Chet in the rifle range, Lourd in housekeeping is a sweetheart and we love Squirrel & Slim - they're a hillarious addition this year!

  • Stayed August 2012, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank peggied
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Toronto, Canada
Level Contributor
6 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 9, 2012

Perfect FAMILY vacation (would not recommend for adults only). It's a big resort with very pretty gardens and friendly/helpful staff. We enjoyed the causual ambiance - very western rustic with lots of wood & caribou heads (reminded me of Great Wolf Lodge). The rooms were basic but clean, and the kids loved the bunk beds. Appropriate for kids of all ages, with so many activities you could never get bored. They even have kids programs or babysitting services if the adults want some time to themselves. Shallow wading pool for the little ones attached to the outdoor pool so parents can easily keep an eye on older kids at the same time. Outdoor pool had lots of lounge chairs - enough for everyone. Archery & pellet rifle range was kid focused and was a favourite with my 7 & 9 yr old boys (my husband & I had fun with it too). Also kayaking, paddleboats, minigolf, tennis courts, outdoor volleyball court, horseshoes, bocci ball, rockclimbing wall. BIG line-ups for the bungee trampoline (60 min waiting time). The Banana Boat ride and water skiing was a lot of fun but they only last a few minutes (can only sign up once per day). Great way for kids to learn to water ski though - they have skiis that are glued together and you hold on to a solid metal bar attached to the boat instead of a rope. Our kids got up on their first try!
They have campfire songs & roasting marshmellows. The indoor water park was smaller than I thought it would be - basically 2 big slides which were fun and a pool with a lillypad rope section.
The best part was the horseback riding! We're an active family but had never been horseback riding before. We went 4x each day (they were always able to accomodate everyone) and by the 5th day, our kids were 'trotting' in the intermediate group while my husband & I were 'cantering' in the advanced group (although I'm told most people don't progress that quickly). They were very accomodating when you asked to ride a specific horse as well. Many of the helmets had a spongy padding inside that was drenched with sweat from the person before you - gross (they did have plastic hair bags you could wear under the helmet, but they look funny and the kids didn't like wearing them). You can't take photos while sitting on the horses, but the Ranch photographer takes a photo of each person on their horse that you can purchase. Kids under 7 could not ride the horses (just small pony walks in a separate location).
The food was 'good'. Not gourmet by any stretch but had lots of choice (including healthy choices) and was all you could eat. Huge buffet for breakfast filled with pancakes, bacon, eggs, sausage, fresh berries, yougurt, cereals, muffins, etc. Same amount of choice for lunch buffet. The dinners were what you would expect of mass table service - bland but it did the job.
Each evening concluded with live entertainment in the 'Saloon' for kids under 13 (Magicians, Jugglers, etc) and then follwed by a DJ dance party for the kids while the parents sat in the audience sipping tasty drinks from the bar. The teens had their own room (no parents allowed) where they could shoot some pool, listen to music, watch movies and socialize.
Overall it was a fantastic & memorable family vacation - very active and many new activities to explore. We drove in from Toronto (7 hr drive) and stopped over in Albany for lunch which was a very pretty town - especially the waterfront area. We stayed at the Holiday Inn that night (30 min away from Ranch) which saved us a lot of $. We got the the Ranch the next morning and were able to use all the facilities even though our room wasn't ready yet. We're looking forward to coming back next year!

Room Tip: Stay in the main lodge in the winter to avoid having to walk outside to get to each meal/pool/etc.
See more room tips
  • Stayed July 2012, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
6 Thank ZC0001
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tulsa, Oklahoma
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 9, 2012

We visited the Ranch for the first time over the Labor Day weekend. We loved it! My 20 year old daughter had a great time as did my 4 year old. The hotel rooms are not fancy. I saw that the hotel was advertising that the bathrooms were being updated soon and I definitely agree that is necessary. A hair dryer would be nice. But the resort grounds are beautiful and the staff was great. The resort sent a complimentary shuttle to pick us up and take us back to the airport which is about 30 minutes away so that was nice. The resort was very busy but there were so many activities, nothing seemed crowded. My 4 year old loved the indoor and outdoor pools, the bungee jumps, paddle boats, mini golf, kids club and of course, the shows (we went all 3 nights were there). My husband, older daughter and I had a great time horse back riding. The horses are beautiful and the rides were very well organized. We loved the food and shared a table with some very nice people. Our experience in the dining room was outstanding. We had great service, good food and wonderful company. The fireworks over the lake on Sunday night were amazing. The entire weekend was extremely fun and very relaxing for all of us. The all-inclusive price was really nice. It really was all inclusive, so our final bill was actually less than I expected. The hotel gave me the 15% discount that they were advertising for the weekend as soon as I asked for it when we checked in. (I booked before this discount was offered). We bought a bottle of wine and a couple of cocktails and those were the only things extra. And they were very fair prices, not resort prices at all. Although we still paid quite a bit for the weekend, we tried almost every activity and ate well, so it was worth it. I would highly recommend the resort to anyone with young children. My only advice is to pack a hairdryer and your child's tennis racquet if they play. The hotel had everything but kids' racquets so throw one in the suitcase if you think you might need it. We will definitely go back.

Room Tip: Based on the other reviewers' recommendations, we stayed on the second floor of the main lodge...
See more room tips
  • Stayed September 2012, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank ret0612
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Buffalo, New York
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 6, 2012

After reading a ton of reviews, we finally got to experience the Ranch first hand. It was a lot of fun, especially for our 6-year-old. There is a ton of activities and it can be as busy or relaxing as you'd like it to be. The food is not fine dining, but very good nonetheless. The negative reviewers are just looking for things to complain about. The activities were great, shows were fun, fireworks were spectacular. We will be going back again!

Room Tip: Brint your hair dryer!
See more room tips
  • Stayed September 2012, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank RB118
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Springfield, Massachusetts, United States
Level Contributor
15 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 31 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 4, 2012

I just went for Labor Day weekend to the Rocking Horse Ranch with my husband and teenaged son. This was our second time here, and we had the most relaxing, fun-filled time. The place is a little expensive, however, I think you get value for your dollar (just add up what you might pay for all the different activities you do -- meals, entertainment, water park, horseback riding, etc.). The resort also gave us a substantial discount for staying three nights and I loved that everything was included. You need no additional money during your stay (though we each did buy a souvenir at the end of our trip at their gift shop).

My husband and I were really impressed with the staff (the resort employs many people which in itself is good in this economy) and they provide great service. For example, the grounds of the resort were immaculate with flower gardens and hanging flowers. The grounds crew takes such good care of the place that after a brief shower, they were out blowing the pathways clear of any stray leaves or other debris, and after an evening of fireworks over the lake, all debris (from people and the fireworks) were gone by early morning (including any stray balloons and glowsticks that they gave the guests the prior night). Then there are the lifeguards who keep the pool areas neat and clean, the staff running group activities (such as bingo, blackjack, or other competitions), staff providing boats and sports equipment to individual guests, staff running water sports activities (water skiing and rides on a banana boat), staff cleaning the rooms, staff running the archery and riflery ranges, staff running the reception desk, staff running the bar in the lobby (with free popcorn and cold water with lemon), and the bar by the pool (which had free food and drinks during the afternoon cocktail hour).

And of course, I can’t forget the dining room staff. The food was really good. It was self-serve buffet for breakfast and lunch, and table-service for dinner (with dessert buffet tables, including a chocolate fountain). Food was plentiful and the service was very fast and efficient. (And the character lunch was cute with all the picture taking.)

Lastly, there was the great staff working with the horses and taking good care of the riders. There are 105 horses there (plus a zebra, donkeys, camel and a couple of cats). My husband went horseback riding 2 to 3 times a day (people rode anywhere from zero to five times a day). I just rode once and decided to use that time with other activities such as taking a horse-drawn carriage through the woods, taking the hiking trail around the property, and kayaking. We had plenty to keep us busy after riding too – such as playing miniature golf, tennis, ping pong, billiards, air hockey, Wii games, jumping in the bounce house, and of course, sliding down the water slides into the pools. And I should note there were many other activities that we didn’t do (such as bungee jumping), and services we didn’t use (such as the spa and child care programs). Each night, there was also entertainment such as an illusionist David Haines and his wife. Thus, we had full days but they were enjoyable and relaxing.

  • Stayed September 2012, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank PLK609
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
NYC
Level Contributor
10 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 4, 2012

We originally planned to stay for 4 nights, but multiples sickness forced us to shrink it to 2 nights. The reservation people were very understanding, as they modified our booking multiple times to accommodate our situation.
We went to the ranch earlier in Apr, had a great time, decided to do it again in Aug when the outside pool is open. A bunch of friends also decided to join us, as the school is out that week. Much has stayed the same, except:
1) Bathroom has been renovated, with new fixtures and a nice counter/cabinet. Still no shelving and no removable shower head.
2) The pool outside is GREAT. The kids love the kiddie pool with the baby slide. The main pool has a great slide that was really fun for parents too. Water is clean, life guard is alert as always.
3) Water skiing and banana boating - we didn't part take in these activities, we were fishing across the lake and observed. While it looks fun, it could take a while for your turn, it is not as easy as it looks, as people keep falling off from the ski. It was fun to watch tho. Oh BTW, if you really want to catch fish, you should consider using something other bread (which they provided at the sport shack), you can't keep the fish, it needs to go back to the pond.
4) Water station - they are well positioned so that you don't get dehydrated. One by the sport shack, one by the pool, one in the bar near the front desk. I don't recall there is one near the horse stable.

We had a great time. Didn't use the day care/camp this time, as we want to make fun as a family. All the staff we encountered was very courteous and helpful, anything to make our stay enjoyable, we just need to ask. :)
We took advantage of their 15% off toward future stay, we will be back in Dec to try snow tubing!

Room Tip: Main lodge is the way to go
See more room tips
  • Stayed August 2012, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank qqmelodia
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hotels you might also like...
Also consider these accommodations in or near Highland
16.8 mi away
Pinegrove Family Dude Ranch
9.5 mi away
Minnewaska Lodge
Minnewaska Lodge
#1 of 1 in Gardiner
4.5 of 5 bubbles 317 reviews
4.3 mi away
Super 8 Highland NY
Super 8 Highland NY
#2 of 5 in Highland
3.5 of 5 bubbles 379 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices
5.4 mi away
Hampton Inn & Suites Poughkeepsie
19.8 mi away
Honor's Haven Resort & Spa
Honor's Haven Resort & Spa
#1 of 1 in Ellenville
3.5 of 5 bubbles 430 reviews
12.9 mi away
HYATT house Fishkill/Poughkeepsie
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices

Been to Rocking Horse Ranch Resort? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Additional Information about Rocking Horse Ranch Resort

Property: Rocking Horse Ranch Resort
Address: 600 State Route 44/55, Highland, NY 12528-2259
Phone Number:
Location: United States > New York > Highland
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 5 Hotels in Highland
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Number of rooms: 120
Also Known As:
Rocking Horse Ranch Hotel Highland
Rocking Horse Hotel
Rocking Horse Resort

Is This Your TripAdvisor Listing?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing