Elephant Crazy in Salinas, CA

One of our most favorite trips while we lived permanently in California was our visit to The Vision Quest Ranch just outside of Salinas California. Our family was able to tour the property and spend several hours getting to know the elephants there. We got so up close and personal on the tour, that we were able to give one of the largest male elephants a bath.

My daughter was beside herself the entire trip. And thankfully, the elephant was patient and gentle. I’ll admit I was beyond nervous when she curled up next to the elephant. It was an adventure we will never forget.

The Vision Quest Ranch trains animals for Hollywood movies and also serves as a sanctuary for large unwanted animals. Prior to our up close and personal visit with the elephants, we toured the property and learned about jaguars, tigers, zebras and a number of other animals, but it was all about the elephants for us. Here are a few pictures below.


The cloud porn in itself is pretty amazing, but when you add into the elephants, it makes for the perfect family photo.


One of the reasons we like Vision Quest is how they treat their animals. These elephants are not caged and are allowed to roam a large part of the property. This was important when we visited the Oakland Zoo and our own Oklahoma City Zoo. Again, look at that cloud porn!


We were able to get extremely up close and personal with the elephants. Ryleigh was ecstatic that she was able to feed the elephant and even bath them. I was most blown away by the precision the elephant had with his trunk. He was able to grab our carrot almost like he had fingers and place it in his mouth.

Above is a short instagram video I took while Greg and Ryleigh washed their elephant friend. Ry didn’t want it to end.  

One of the things I like most about Northern California are the roadside markets where we snagged a ton of amazing really fresh produce and at ridiculous prices like $6 for an entire flat of strawberries. The strawberries there are out of this world. The roadside markets cater to all age groups which you see above.

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