I’ve written about Bed Breakfasts and Boat & Breakfast, but what about those rare occasions when you want to travel with your horse? A Barn & Breakfast is a motel with an adjacent barn where horses can eat and sleep in stalls while their human counterparts get some rest. Most Barn & Breakfasts charge by the night for both human and animal board, and many given discounts for multiple horses if you’re traveling with a group.
The only way to travel with horses is to find a quality Barn & Breakfast before you ever leave home. Locating them while on the road is next-to-impossible, especially if you’re traveling through unknown territory, and you’ll find that during the tourism season, Barn & Breakfasts fill vacancies quickly.
You’ll want to find a Barn & Breakfast with adequate facilities for a decent price. In most cases, you’ll never pay more than $100 per might total, though some are far more extravagant and may cost up to $500 per might. These establishments might provide turn-out, blanketing, stall cleaning, riding privileges and other amenities in addition to a place to stay.
The first step to finding a quality Barn & Breakfast is to scour the Internet for establishments along your chosen route. You might have to go a little bit out of your way, as most of these facilities are not located directly off the highway, but it will be well worth it when you can unload your horse for the night while you get some sleep. Make a list of Barn & Breakfasts near where you plan to travel and give them a call.
You can “Google” the term “Barn & Breakfast” to find possibilities or you can visit the Web sites for destination towns. Either way, you are likely to come up with several possibilities. Once you have a list, you’ll need to prepare a list of questions to ask the owner. You should know how much the room and board cost together, what type of stall your horse will be staying in, how early you have to “check out” in the morning and the type of feed they provide.
It is also a good idea to find out if a Barn & Breakfast has any previous customers to whom you could speak for a referral. You don’t want to leave your horse alone in an unsafe barn or with owners who are less than scrupulous. In the past, horse thieves have even worked in conjunction with these facilities to steal valuable horses for resale in other parts of the country, so make sure the location is safe.
If you can’t find a quality Barn & Breakfast that meets your needs, you can also board yourself and your horse separately while traveling. Many stables in the Houston area and all over the country have nightly rates for overnight boarding while you stay in a nearby hotel. This might be more expensive and certainly won’t be as quaint as the vacation you’ve been imagining, but it will give your horse someplace cool and safe to stay for the night.
A Few Great Options
To help you get started in finding a great Barn & Breakfast, here are a few that my wife and I have used and enjoyed immensely.
Ace of Hearts Ranch and Equestrian Center
7400 Bridal Path Ln.
Cocoa, FL 32927
Horse Haven Bed & Breakfast
462 Raccoon Hill Rd.
Salisbury, NH 03268
Inn at White Pine
3848 White Pine Rd.
Loon Lake, WA 99148
Knolle Farm & Ranch Bed, Barn & Breakfast
Farm Road 70
Sandia, TX 78383
Spirit Mountain Lodge and Cabins
4117 Spirit Mountain Loop
Ozark, AR 72949