Discoveries: Monty Roberts & Flag Is Up Farms

Our Discoveries series takes a special look at popular attractions in Buellton, and aims to provide an insider’s perspective on how to get the most from planning a trip to these popular destinations.

Flag Is Up Farms
901 E. Highway 246
Solvang, CA

Located less than five minutes from Buellton’s city center, Flag Is Up Farms has been a Santa Ynez Valley staple since 1966. Home to Monty & Pat Roberts, Flag Is Up Farms offers visitors an unparalleled look behind the scenes of a working horse ranch and learning center for horse trainers and enthusiasts.

You might recognize Monty Roberts for the work he did with Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, or from his award-winning autobiography The Man Who Listens To Horses. Perhaps you learned about him in the documentary, Monty Roberts: The Real Horse Whisperer, for his work with wild mustang Shy Boy – who you can visit in person at Flag Is Up Farms! With an incredibly deep and moving history behind this local icon, we suggest a visit to the About page on his website to learn more about him.

His lifetime of work creating trust-based partnerships with non-violent training methods has solidified Monty’s legacy in the world of horses; allowing him to develop proprietary training equipment and tack, as well as establishing the Monty Roberts International Learning Center at Flag Is Up Farms where students can learn to implement his teachings in their own unique disciplines.

Now that you know a bit more about Monty Roberts, let’s talk about what you can do during a visit to Flag Is Up Farms! When planning your visit, be sure to stay at one of Buellton’s hotels or resorts; conveniently located on or near Highway 246 for easy access to the farm.

What You Can Do:

  • Solo or small group wandering of the farm is free and encouraged! Fans and tourists visiting the Santa Ynez Valley can stop by at any time to see the farm (9 am to 5 pm, 7 days a week). Don’t forget to stop by and say hi to Shy Boy!
    • Prefer a guided tour? Flag is Up Farms offers a guided tour of the world class facility, where you can see the farm at work. You may even be able to experience horse training in a variety of disciplines!  This walking tour is wheelchair accessible, takes between 60-90 minutes and runs $20 per person.  For more information click here.
  • If you have a professional interest in Monty’s one-of-a-kind approach, the Monty Roberts International Learning Center has a full calendar of courses ranging from Horsemanship 101 with Certified Instructors to personal coaching with the man himself.  These courses require advanced planning, so check out the calendar here.
  • Support a great cause! Join-Up is the non-profit wing of Flag is Up Farms and offers some unique programs, listed below.  You can learn all about the history of Join-Up here, learn the programs below here, and make a donation here.
    • Fired-UP is a 2-Day equine assisted retreat for active duty fire service personnel that provides tools to overcome the stress and trauma of their high risk environment.
    • Horse Sense and Healing is a program designed to veterans and first responders suffering from PTSD, or PTSI (Post Traumatic Stress Injury)
    • Lead-Up California leadership program aiming to create peaceful leaders through workshops with horses.
    • Partner-Up is a 2 day retreat for active duty law enforcement, and 911 dispatchers.  It provides participants with tools to overcome the daily stress and trauma associated with operating in a high-risk environment.
  • If you are unable to make it to their picturesque farm, Monty Roberts Online University can help you explore his lifetime of teachings with a host of online classes.  Start here and use the promo code: DAYPASS for trial access to some of the lessons!

Ready to learn more? Listen to our exclusive interview with Debbie Loucks in our destination podcast episode, Meet Us at Flag Is Up Farms!

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