Malibu Wine Safaris Animals
But the real star of the show is Stanley, a towering giraffe who made his Hollywood debut in The Hangover 3. Hes anything but camera shy, and is keen to take a selfie so long as you reward him with a snack. Other animals with movie credits include a gorgeous white thoroughbred who performed stunts in The Lord of the Rings, as well as two bison, Chipotle and BBQ Sauce, who were both extras in a John Wayne film.
Leave Kids And Pets At Home
This safari is not your typical zoo experience, so think about getting a babysitter before visiting. Dogs are also not allowed on any tour. All Wine Safari tours are for ages 21 and older and require proof of a valid ID. Their sister company Malibu Wine Hikes does offer kid-friendly hikes around the property.
Looking for more travel ideas? Head to the Travel Guides section.
Teresa Whiting is a magazine editor turned freelancer with a passion for food and travel. Follow along as she details go-to travel guides and tips from her latest adventures.
Safari Tour & Wine Tasting
The Malibu Wine Safari has seven different tour and tasting options, from the basic tour of the ranch and wine tasting to custom private tours. One thing to note, if you want to meet Stanley the Giraffe, one of those ex-show biz animals, hes got his own specialty giraffe tour.
We did the Explorer Tour where we got tour the ranch and vineyard in an open air safari truck. We made several stops along the way to see and feed the animals as well as try wine at some truly beautiful lookout points.
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The tour started out with the history of the ranch and a drive through some beautiful old oak trees. Our first stop was by a little pond and a said trees to try some wine. We started out with whites and roses which were delicious. Next we were on to the animals, we drove through paddocks of llamas, horses, donkeys, even a yak!
We got to make a couple of stops to see and feed some furry friends, first was the llamas. For whatever reason, I love llamas, they are so weirdly cute. I was totally stoked to feed them some carrots. From there we walked over to the zebras! Generally zebras arent the friendliest of animals but for some big leafy pieces of lettuce they graced us with their presence and even hung around for a few pictures.
Our last stop was to try a few more wines with a little charutery snack. It was getting late in the afternoon and golden hour hit the grounds just perfectly.
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Malibu Wine Safaris Stanley
The idea for a wine safari came to fruition after the Semler family, who purchased the land in the 1980s, went on a safari in South Africas Kruger National Park. The family already had rescue animals living on the property, so they thought an Indiana Jones experience would be a great way to share the ranch as well as wine made with grapes from their own vineyards.
The first tasting on the safari is a palatable set of whites and rosé, which youll enjoy after climbing over a canopy bridge where you can soak up the gorgeous vistas. The second tasting is Saddlerocks best selection of reds, served in a valley called Camp Cabernet that is home to the yellow VW van from Little Miss Sunshine. Youll have another chance to taste your favourite at the end of the safari, and we couldnt help but pick up a few bottles to take home with us.
Wine, cute animals, and the California sun it really doesnt get much better than that!
Malibu Wine Safari Facing Scrutiny
MALIBUMalibu Wine Safari, is a luxurious wine excursion that houses a wide collection of wild animals, including the famous Stanley the Giraffe. The establishment has; come under scrutiny for pocketing money from customers and is facing a misdemeanor criminal charge for maintaining an animal facility or a wild animal without a license.;
Located in Saddlerock Ranch and owned by the Semler family, the safari received dozens of negative reviews on Yelp from customers who have not received refunds during weeks of closure in March 2020 due to the pandemic. One review on Yelp of September 29, 2020 wrote:;
Like many others here, I am down $700 because this company never indicated they were closed on their websiteThey have not responded to any of my emails regarding a refund, and they probably never will.;
There has been no; comment by the Semler family about the situation. Malibu Wine Safari; recently deleted and suspended all of their social media accounts. ABC 7 reported that the Semler family received a $630,762 loan from the Paycheck Protection Program in April 2020, but no refund has been indicated by the use of the loan. They also reported several emails between angry customers and the company where they indicated offering customers vouchers instead of a full refund.;
The Malibu Wine Safari is currently shut down as a result of the Coronavirus pandemic and; pending charges the owners face. All of the wild animals are no longer under the care of the Semlers or their business.;
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Important Things To Know
- All the tours are 21+
- Its best to make reservations in advanced. Summer time is the busy season and we made our reservations about a month ahead of time.
- You need to get there 30 minutes before your tour starts to get all checked in.
- There is no bar or wine sampling at the tour office so when we got there early we had a little time to kill so we went up the road to the tasting room before our tour.
- Youll get a wristband once youve checked in and that wristband will correlate to the safari truck you are in.
Overall it was an awesome experience and a really fun time. If you are in LA its an excellent day trip and a unique adventure.
Malibu Wine Safaris Tour
The vino-fueled adventure begins with you hop on an animal print, open-air safari vehicle and take off through the propertys rolling hills lined with endless rows of vines. Youll ramble along picturesque canyon views with hundreds of horses grazing in the distance. Every time the vehicle stops, you get to do one of two things: wet your palette with a wine tasting, or feed the resident four-legged friends, which gets exponentially more fun the tastings you consume. The 20 species that are living the good life at Saddlerock include zebras, llamas, yaks, alpacas, horses, and camels. Of course, this is LA, so all the animals are aptly named youll meet Justin Zeber, Llama Del Rey, and Yak Efron, to name a few.
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Stanley The Giraffe Seized As Evidence As Dozens Fight For Refunds At Malibu Wine Safaris
Stanley the giraffe of Malibu Wine Safaris is at the center of two pending criminal trials and has been “seized in place” as evidence by the California Department of Fish and Wildlife.
Stanley, famous for his selfies with celebrities and a cameo in “The Hangover Part III” is for now, still located at the sprawling Saddlerock Ranch in Malibu where he’s lived since 2015 among other animals like zebras, water buffalos, camels and llamas.
But Eyewitness News has learned that members of the Semler family, who own the ranch and Malibu Wine Safaris, have never held the required county permits to operate a business with wild animals.
“Right now, they’re in unlawful possession of a giraffe,” says Capt. Patrick Foy of the California Department of Fish and Wildlife, who explained that Stanley was “seized in place” because it’s no easy task to move an 18-foot tall giraffe.
Dakota Semler, owner and CEO of Malibu Wine Safaris, is facing misdemeanor criminal charges of “maintaining an animal facility or a wild animal without a license.”
Ron Semler is Dakota’s father and owner of Stanley the giraffe. He is facing misdemeanor criminal charges of providing false information on his application for Stanley’s “restricted species” permit with the California Department of Fish and Wildlife.
Both Ron and Dakota Semler have pleaded not guilty to the charges and both declined to speak with us for this story.
We asked why CDFW didn’t verify that the Semlers had the proper county permits.
Cielo Winerymalibu Winery With A View
Visit Cielo Winery for the ambiance and the views as well as the Malibu wines. Its the best winery in Malibu to visit if you can.
The Tuscan-style stone barn at Cielo Winery sits atop a hill of vineyards and thats where the wine tastings are. Tables surround the barn area and afford sweeping views of the neighboring mountains and Malibu vineyards. Its the perfect place for a Malibu wine picnic.
If you want to taste wine at Cielo Winery, take a winery tour, or just get through the gates, you must make an appointment. Dont let this deter you, it makes for very enjoyable wine tastings without big crowds. Once you reserve your spot, youll find Cielo Winery at 31424 Mulholland Hwy, Malibu, CA 90265.
A Malibu wine picnic at Cielo Winery.
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Hours & Safety Protocols
Our current hours are Sunday-Thursday 12-7pm and Friday-Saturday 12-9pm. Due to the new current LA County Mandates we have updated our current hours.
We are a strict 21+ & over establishment – no exception. Please advise your party that everyone must be of legal drinking age & no infants may accompany parents.
We do not allow pets inside the premises. We only allow ADA Service Animals.
Parties limited to 8 people per table maximum.
Club pickups & online pickups available anytime we are open.
All guests must wear a mask.
No indoor seating currently.
We are currently accepting reservations for sit down service.
Guests are welcome to bring their own picnic or receive delivery food.
Malibu Wine Hikes: Meeting Stanley The Giraffe At Saddlerock Ranch
Disclosure: This hike was provided free of charge; all opinions are my own.
In the hills above Thousands Oaks, there is a fantastic property known as Saddlerock Ranch. This area has animals, rocks, cave paintings, and vineyards, and you can access it via safari car or on foot. I did the safari version previously, which you can read about here, so I decided to connect with Malibu Wine Hikes and do the hike version as well. The hike is fantastic as it is slower, and you get to spend more time with the animals, including a giraffe named Stanely, read all about it below.
- The main tour with giraffe is $65
- 2.5 miles
- Mostly flat but some elevation
- This information is from my visit in 2017
The hike starts and ends on the ranch property, which is about 5 minutes past the Malibu Wines tasting area. You will get the full directions when you book a tour.
After arriving and meeting with our guide Kurt , we set out on the hike. The hike heads over rolling hills, with a little shade while Kurt tells you about the property, history, and animals.
It is paced well with a lot of places to stop along the way for photos and to learn more about the area. The first stop for us was at this massive tree, which you could climb if you felt like it.
We were able to walk up to a platform about 15 feet off the ground, and our guide gave us plenty of plants to feed Stanley. Stanley is a retired movie giraffe and was featured in the Hangover 3, if you saw it.
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A Locals Guide To Malibu Wine Country
Less than 40 miles from downtown Los Angeles youll find Malibu wine country hidden in the canyons of the Santa Monica Mountains. Although Malibu wines dont have the hyped-up fame of those from Napa or a few other California wine regions, Malibu wineries produce some pretty tasty wines. And tourists dont flock here for wine tasting, so you dont have the crowds, and thats definitely part of the charm of this beautiful area.
I lived in Malibu wine country for over 20 years, so this is a true locals guide to the area. All of my recommendations come from years of enjoying the neighborhood wineries, tasting rooms, restaurants, and local shops of the Malibu wine region, and have not been sponsored in any way.
From my house I could walk to some of the most iconic places in the area like The Old Place restaurant and Cornell Winery. There used to even be a Malibu wine tasting room right on the corner of my street until it burned down in the 2018 Wolsey fire. So yes, Ive tried a good amount of Malibu wines, and have eaten in most of the Malibu and neighboring Agoura Hills restaurants.
A view of Malibu vineyards from Cielo winery.
California Coast Trip: Malibu Farms & The Malibu Wine Safari
California Coast Trip: Malibu Farms & the Malibu Wine Safari
I know. I know what youre thinking. This post is only ten months late, but Im kind of happy I waited. I dont have an excuse as to why I didnt post the rest of my California;trip other than the fact that I kept putting it off for so long that I basically forgot about it. The good news is that Im finishing it now, which means I have one more post after this and its completed So why am I glad I waited? Well, it gives me something to write about and share during these crazy times. Looking back at these photos made me happy, and it was a nice distraction, and Im hoping it does the same for you! If youre new here, last summer, my friend Caitlin and I traveled the coast of California together. It was a lifechanging experience, and I cant wait to do it all over again. We started in Lake Tahoe, made our way down to Napa Valley, to San Francisco to Santa Cruz, Monterey, Big Sur, Pismo, all the way to Los Angelos. It was one of the most amazing trips Ive ever been on, and I still cant get over how gorgeous California truly is.
Hope you all have a great weekend, hang in there ;;
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Guide To Malibu Wine Safaris
Guide to Malibu Wine Safaris How to book tickets, when to go and how to get to Saddlerock Ranch in Malibu, California.
Malibu Wine Safaris at Saddlerock Ranch brings wine tasting and wildlife into one exciting adventure. Board an open-air safari vehicle, tour the acres of vineyards and feed giraffes, zebras and alpacas. Here is what you need to know before you go.
Cornell Winerythe Best Malibu Wine Tasting Room
Cornell Winery is not an actual Malibu winery. It is a wine tasting room, wine shop, art gallery, music venue, and a great place to enjoy a glass of local Malibu wine with friends.
Since many of the Malibu wineries do not have tasting rooms, instead of driving from winery to winery, Cornell is a one stop shop. You can do the daily flight tastings, order wine by the glass, or purchase a bottle of Malibu wines like Dolin Estate, Malibu Rocky Oaks, or Colcanyon to take home or enjoy on the charming outside patio.
Cornell Winery is also the place to hang out while you wait for a table next door at The Old Place. Theyll send someone over to get you.
Cornell Winery & Tasting Room is located at 29975 Mulholland Hwy, Agoura Hills, CA 91301.
The best Malibu wine tasting room is Cornell Winery.
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Visit The Rosenthal Wine Bar & Patio
Located at 18741 Pacific Coast Highway in beautiful Malibu, California.We are proud to feature the only wine bar and tasting room on the Pacific Coast Highway.
- Wines are also sold by the glass and bottle for on site consumption. Bottles and cases can be purchased to take home.
- We offer cheeses & crackers along with some other small goodies and have food trucks on the weekends. But you are welcome to bring in outside food.
- No outside alcohol
- No one under 21 allowed on weekends. Children are welcome on weekdays.
- We love pets, but no animals allowed, except service animals.
Pick The Correct Tour
Do you really want to see Stanley the giraffefrom The Hangover Part III? Make sure to book the giraffe tour. We did not book this one, and went with the Vintner Tour because we wanted more time on the ranch. Choose from the more basic Explorer Tour, the Pizza and Wine Tour or even the Mimosa Brunch Tour with brunch foods and bubbly.
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Where To See Exotic Animals While Tasting Amazing Wine
Stretching for more than 50 kilometres, Malibu conjures up images of beaches with celebrity homes overlooking the water, dramatic canyons and incredible hiking trails. The laidback and upscale California beach town isn’t just for celebrities and surfers, but for adventurous wine lovers too. Jason Dundas joined a wine safari to taste some of the delicious drops created in this region.
Malibu, California is in the United States of America.
Malibu Wine Safaris.www.lasafaris.comPh: +1 818 578 4081
Wine tours start at $90pp including ranch & vineyard tour, animal encounters and wine tasting.
Prices correct at 31.10.2020
Malibu, California is the ultimate mix of untouched beauty and opulence, with iconic beaches lined with multi-million dollar mansions and mountains. This beachy suburb is home to some of the worlds rich and famous, including celebrities like Lady Gaga, Leonardo DiCaprio and Miley Cyrus.
Only a 30-minute drive from Los Angeles, Malibu is the perfect spot for a day trip or a weekend escape. Jason decided to check out Malibu Wine Safari. The Safari takes visitors on an adventure through the 400 hectare Saddlerock Ranch and Vineyard. With a driver, guide and an open-air safari truck, you can just relax and listen to the guide talk.
After seeing the animals, Jason finally got to taste the vino. His favourite was the Moscato, probably because the label had a picture of Stanley on it!