Visiting a reindeer ranch might be one of the best ways to get into the holiday spirit during this unusual year. Although some December tours of caribou ranches are sold out or quickly filling up, it may not be too late to make a reservation on selected days. Even if it’s not practical to plan a last-minute visit, these ranches are also offering virtual online tours to liven up your day. Here is a look at five reindeer ranches to visit or remotely tour over the holidays.
Hardy’s Reindeer Ranch
1356 County Road 2900 N.
Rantoul, IL 61866
Open over the holidays, Hardy’s Reindeer Ranch offers up close reindeer tours for just $5. Located in Champaign County, this family-owned ranch is admission free and features a herd of 16 Alaskan reindeer to enjoy. Also onsite is a large gift shop filled with unique holiday items and a banquet hall for special events. Customers can call or email firstname.lastname@example.org for tour information. All visitors over two years old must bring a face mask and maintain social distancing. Owners Julie and Mark Hardy also offer virtual tours on their Facebook business page.
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Rainier Reindeer Ranch
8120 256th Ave.
Buckley, WA 98321
With majestic Mount Rainier as a backdrop, Rainier Reindeer Ranch offers hands on encounters that are limited to five people at a time. Encounters last one hour and may be booked directly online Tickets are $11 for guests 11 years and under and $45 for guests 12 years and older. During an encounter, each guest will be able to pet and interact with two reindeer. Owner Sophia McKee also offers reindeer rentals for special occasions and 30-60 minute virtual experiences. The popular ranch is located approximately 45 miles from Seattle and 22 miles from Tacoma.
2921 North Sixth St.
Kalamazoo, MI 49009
Open by appointment Reindeer Ranch offers guided tours of its reindeers and ranch. Tours are $10 for guests 2 years old and older and last approximately 30-45 minutes. Preceding the tour is a 15-minute educational presentation with hands on experiences. Due to ongoing health mandates, tours are limited in group size but many tours are still available. Visitors must practice social distancing and wear face masks when inside the gift shop. Owners Gary and Carol Borton have been raising reindeer for more than 20 years.
Rockin Reindeer Ranch
4127 West 2200 South
Ogden, UT 84401
All Christmas tours are reportedly sold out at Rockin Reindeer Ranch. However, this beautiful ranch in West Haven will be offering Frozen-themed tours with live characters in late February, with bookings available in January. The ranch was offering a standard ranch tour and another tour that is visited by Santa Claus. Tours last approximately 60-75 minutes, with prices starting at $10. Interested customers are encouraged to contact the ranch for updated information.
Rooftop Landing Reindeer Farm
2706 E. Stevenson Lake Road
Clare, MI 48617
Rooftop Landing Reindeer Farm continues to accept tour reservations through December 23. Family owned and operated since 1991, the farm charges an admission fee of just $5 for visitors 2 years and older. Onsite is a herd of reindeer to pet, a heated barn for other farm animals and a gift shop for gifts and food items. Additionally, Santa Claus makes regular appearances for greeting and photo opportunities. The farm also maintains a live web cam on its website of some of its furry friends.
About The Author:
Randy Yagi is an award-winning freelance writer who served as the National Travel Writer for CBS Local from 2012-2019. More than 900 of his stories still appear in syndication across 23 CBS Local websites, including CBS New York, CBS Los Angeles, CBS Chicago and CBS San Francisco. During his peak years with CBS, he reportedly had a digital audience reach of 489 million and more than 5.5 million monthly visitors. His other stories have also appeared in the Daily Meal, Examiner.com, CBS Radio, Engadget and Radio.com. He is a Media Fellow of Stanford University, U.S. Army veteran and lifelong resident of Santa Cruz County, California.