The Best Desert Getaways: 7. Tanque Verde Ranch, Arizona

Go west, young man

Tanque Verde Ranch

Ride one of the ranch's 180 horses     Photo: Tanque Verde Ranch

Cowboys, this one’s for you: Just east of Tucson, at the base of the Rincon Mountains near Saguaro National Park sits a 60,000-acre ranch stocked with 180 horses. From basic horseback riding to lope checks to team penning, beginning to advanced riders can take a lesson and then trot or gallop off into the sunset. There’s even a three-hour horse whisperer-like program called “Harmony With Horses” taught by a champion rider and equine therapists, where participants learn how to tap into their horse’s behaviors by using subtle movements and commands.

For the non-horseback riders, 600 acres of singletrack mountain biking trails snake through the property, daily guided hikes cover miles of trails, and there’s a 1.5-acre lake stocked with bluegill and largemouth bass. On the other hand, the chaise lounges at the outdoor pool are pretty comfortable, too. Doubles, with breakfast included from $189.

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