By Jennifer Flowers, Devorah Lev-Tov, Nora Zelevansky, April 28, 2023
There’s no denying the romantic appeal of the American West: storied ranching culture; green valleys that explode with wildflowers in the spring; rushing, trout-filled rivers; stands of pine and aspen forests; views of snow-topped peaks. And there are few better ways to take it all in than with a stay at one of the nation’s best ranches and lodges—especially when you’re part of a larger group that’s looking for a place to get away from it all.
Ever since pandemic travel restrictions motivated more Americans to book domestic vacations, multigenerational trips at U.S. ranches and lodges have been on the rise, and that trend shows no signs of stopping. Many retreats are responding to the demand by extending their seasons into fall, and even opening up winter experiences for the first time that are proving to be popular with groups, too.
While there are many standout places to choose from, AFAR has done the legwork to identify the 10 top U.S. ranches and lodges that are the best in their class, whether for their historic architecture, their programming and service, or their unprecedented conservation efforts. Read on for the top 10 ranches and lodges in the American West, presented in no particular order, and then start planning that epic vacation your family won’t soon forget.