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Not all of Texas is full of ranches and cowboys, however, visitors who want to experience the cowboy lifestyle can do it on guest ranches and dude ranches. A dude ranch is simply a vacation destination on a working ranch. The ranches listed below will teach you how to ride a horse while also offering incredible lodging options. Many of the ranches listed are actually located in the Cowboy Capital of Texas in Bandera. Get your cowboy boots on and head to these top dude ranches in the Lone Star State for your next getaway.
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For those wanting all your modern amenities in a dude ranch, Flying L Ranch Resort is the ranch for you. Complete with an 18-hole golf course and a water park, Flying L is a little bit different than your rough and tumble dude ranches. However, for those who still want to get dirty on the range, there are hayrides and horseback rides on this 542-acre ranch. End your day with a filling dinner and roaring campfire perfect for s’mores.
Mayan Ranch is perfect for families, located in Bandera and is surrounded by the Medina River. Lodging options vary from cottages to single rooms. There are many things to do during your stay at Mayan Ranch. Included in your stay are two 50-minute horseback rides a day, and the guides make even the beginner rider feel comfortable. Don’t miss out on some river fun, such as tubing, fishing or swimming in the Medina. After all that horsing around, you’re sure to build up an appetite. Therefore also included in your stay are three meals fit for a cowboy, and the meals vary from Tex Mex to barbecue.
Located on 725 acres, the Dixie Dude Ranch is still a working ranch in Bandera that raises cattle, goats and pigs. Your stay at Dixie Dude Ranch will be in either a cabin, cottage, bunkhouse or a room in the lodge. Feel free to relax at the pool or go on a hike hunting for arrowheads. A dude ranch wouldn’t be complete with horseback riding, therefore learn the ropes by trained cowboys that actually compete in rodeo events.
Enjoy nice accommodations, home cooked meals and a rodeo every weekend at the Twin Elm Guest Ranch. This ranch overlooks the Medina River and Indian Creek in Bandera. This is the dude ranch to visit to truly escape the hustle and bustle of everyday life. There are no TVs or telephones found in the rooms, so expect to have a relaxing time without interruption. Founded in 1939, this 230-acre ranch is actually one of the oldest dude ranches in the picturesque Texas Hill Country.
Silver Spur Guest Ranch strives to immerse visitors in the cowboy way of life. Stay in the 14,000-square foot lodge where hearty meals are prepared. On the 300-acre property, guests can go on lead horseback rides, take a hike on the number of hiking trails or even dig for fossils in the fossil pit. Silver Spur Guest Ranch also offers live entertainment for guests like live music or cowboy demos. You can even learn how to line dance or two-step during your stay at Silver Spur.
Guests stay in their own cabin on this small dude ranch in Bandera. West 1077 Guest Ranch may be smaller than the other dude ranches on this list, however that is what makes it so great. There is no definitive schedule, so you plan your day as you would like. Book a private horseback ride, simply lounge by the pool, or take a mountain bike out for a ride. Since West 1077 has direct access to Hill Country State Natural Area, it’s easy to explore the miles of hiking trails offered in the area too.
Located in Fort Davis, Prude Ranch offers fun for the whole family. Enjoy scenic mountain scenery during a relaxing horseback ride here. For those who truly want a cowboy experience, choose to camp on an overnight trail ride lead by Prude Ranch. End your day with a buffet-style meal that is sure to leave you feeling full and satisfied.
Horse lovers and those wanting to learn more about horses will love staying at Hill Country Equestrian Lodge. This dude ranch focuses on the bond between horse and rider, so expect well-taught lessons and attentive guides. Hill Country Equestrian Lodge is even home to summer riding camps and riding clinics. However, don’t think you need to get on a horse to enjoy this dude ranch. Take a hike or even enjoy the spa services here too.
Located in Mountain Home, Texas, Y.O. Ranch Headquarters has been in operation for decades. Enjoy three meals a day that would satisfy any cowboy. The daily hour of horseback riding is perfect for beginners and families. Take a tour of the ranch or simply relax around the property while taking in the beautiful Hill Country views.
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Hit the trails on horseback or simply lounge by the pool and spa at Rancho Cortez. Miles of trails are at your fingertips at this family-owned dude ranch. However, Rancho Cortez is not just a dude ranch but also a fitness camp. Learn how to lose weight and eat right with the on-site gym and various fitness classes led by encouraging instructors. No matter if you want to find a healthier you or simply find some relaxation, Rancho Cortez is a great dude ranch destination in Bandera.