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After reading reviews here, we booked online our first horseback riding tour with Rancho two weeks prior to our cruise. We confirmed and paid for Tour #1 Beaches, N-E Coast & Alto Vista Chapel (2.5 hrs). When we reached Aruba on 12/30/05, I saw the confirmation email I had received and printed from Rancho. It just said "PM" next to time so after our xtreme jeep safari in the morning, we came back to the port and asked the lady at the information desk if she could call Rancho and confirm the pick up time for us.


Well, first the number on the confirmation email I had received was wrong! After trying several times, she got their number from a business directory and it worked. I talked to some lady and told her we have booked an afternoon tour with Rancho and want to just confirm the pick up time. She was quite rude and said that I will need to call back in 30 minutes to confirm it. Since we had just come back from the jeep safari, we rushed back to our rooms, took shower, got ready and came running down to call her again. I called her and this time the same lady told us that our booking was canceled a day before and an email was sent to us stating that. I was puzzled - it didn't make any sense. We had paid for this tour online, got a confirmation email from them, and NOW RIGHT AT THE LAST MINUTE, when I am there waiting for the pick up, I am being told that our reservation was canceled ???????????? According to her, they sent me an email with this change a day before the actual tour. I told her there was no way I would have known about it since we have been on the ship for the last 5 days.


My husband and I were furious! She was extremely rude and told me that they will credit back the refund in a few days.


If I hadn't called to confirm the pick up time, we would have ended up waiting for them. I just checked and they credited back our money almost a week after that.


Fortunately, the lady at the information desk was listening to my side of the conversation and suggested to call Goldmine Ranch to see if they have any tours that afternoon. Luckily the owner of goldmine was 5 minutes away from the port and was coming over to drop off some passengers back. So, we just drove off with him to his ranch and truly enjoyed our first horseback riding experience at the beach. Our guide didn't know english but was really nice and we could pretty much converse everything with signs! I will highly recommend Goldmine ranch!


The group rate was $60 per person and a private tour for $85. Since it was just the two of us - he charged us the group rate but we got a private tour on the beach. It was great!!


Please be careful if you book with Rancho Notorious. They really let us down and the service was extremely bad and rude.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I was thinking about doing a biking tour with Rancho Notorious for our cruise Feb 27 2006. I was not sure about them - I did e-mail them a few days ago and no reply as of yet - The fact that they had been rude to you is enough for me to look someplace else.:eek: I will check out the place you recomended

Goldmine ranch - I don't know if they have bike riding but horseback riding sounds good as well! I'll post agien if they get back to me. thanks :)

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  • 3 weeks later...

I'm sorry your experience with Rancho Notorious was so poor.


We were the opposite. My two children (11 & 13) and myself went riding while DH went for a dive. We thoroughly enjoyed ourselves and were well taken care of by the staff. It was hot, and at times tiring, but we rode our horses to the beach and back. Plus what we really enjoyed was it wasn't just a boring walk behind the horse in front, we got to trot and do some actual riding. It was fun.

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