HighlandRanch_1“Please don’t frighten the horses and do not hurry!” These words echo not only as a whimsical motto but as a reminder of the real goal held at Highland Ranch, Northern California’s most beautiful family guest ranch.

A working ranch for over 150 years, Highland Ranch is set amidst majestic redwoods, cedars, and pines in the gorgeous Anderson Valley just a couple hours from Sacramento. Vacationing families visiting Highland Ranch have the best of both worlds to enjoy whether they prefer continuous activities or doing ‘simply nothing.’

With an all inclusive plan, breakfast, lunch, and dinner are enjoyed by all the guests in the main ranch house with complimentary beverages and wine served at meals. A great time to socialize and make friends, mealtime at Highland Ranch is both a highlight and true pleasure for young and old.

HighlandRanch_2With gourmet comfort foods served in huge portions and beautifully presented, the cuisine is top notch. Specialties like melt-in-your-mouth pot roast, homemade gourmet pizza, fresh homemade salsas, salads, jams, jellies, fresh squeezed juices, local fruits and vegetables, made to order breakfasts, and desserts, all served with local wines—are common favorites.

All day and every day, our kids devoured the homemade country-style lemonade and refreshments available in the main cabin for between-meal snacks.

Typically every morning at breakfast, guests sign up for the day’s two big horse back riding events, massage therapy, clay pigeon shooting practice, or they may elect to take the day as it comes stretching out in a hammock to savor the coastal breezes coming through the trees.

Picking fruit from the orchard, fishing in one of the peaceful ponds from dock or boat, or even exploring hundreds of miles of hiking trails keeps kids of all ages enchanted. Moms and dads may decide to rock in a rocking chair on one of the cabin’s decks with nose buried in any of the hundreds of excellent books or magazines for loan or to sit in the game and music room tickling the ivories or strumming a guitar or banjo.

HighlandRanch_3The talented wranglers tailor trail rides on more than 500 miles of trails leading through the Hendy Woods State Park and Navarro River, to the riding and comfort levels of all ages and abilities. Whatever one does to pass the time, one thing is certain, that it’s done at a leisurely pace with no commitments except to congregate for the next meal when the dinner bell rings or to present oneself for a delightful massage from the on-call massage therapist.

If guests choose to clean and fillet their fresh catch of the day or to turn it over to the kitchen staff, the chef will prepare the catfish or other finned pond dwellers to everyone’s delight. It’ll likely be enjoyed at the nightly cocktail hour where guests mingle on the deck and living areas of the main ranch house before dinner to enjoy refreshments and cocktails with appetizers while the kids brag about their daily catch.

Watching the sunset on the deck as the deer graze and crickets serenade is a favorite memory for many. For a truly unsurpassed and memorable guest ranch experience and treasure, Highland Ranch is the first choice.

HighlandRanch_4Located between Cloverdale and Mendocino, just outside the charming town of Philo, Highland Ranch, a totally secluded pocket of heaven, peace, wilderness, and tranquility offers families from around the world. a unique glimpse of the golden state’s unspoiled historic past and riding traditions. While Northern California is rich with excellent guest ranch travel destinations, Highland Ranch is a cut above the rest and simply put: It doesn’t get any better than this!