A Comparison of Horse Farm Tours in Lexington, KY

by Bridgette Redman  |  Published July 18, 2023

For visitors to Kentucky, horse farm tours offer an exciting opportunity to tap into the region’s unique equine culture.

(Photo: Horse Farm Tour and Racetrack Visit / Courtesy

Widely known as the “Horse Capital of the World,” Lexington is home to numerous horse farms, renowned thoroughbred racehorses and prestigious equestrian events. Taking a tour of horse farms while there lets tourists experience the state’s rich equestrian heritage and gives them an opportunity to learn about horses, watch live shows and explore various equine exhibits. We compare four tours providing a variety of experiences and features deep in the heart of Bluegrass Country.

Horse Farm Tour and Keeneland Race Track Visit

Experience the essence of Lexington on this three-hour tour. Start with a leisurely walk amid the ivy-clad landscapes of Keeneland Race Track, famous for hosting extravagant horse auctions. Next, unveil the secrets of thoroughbred horses as you delve into the inner workings of a renowned farm. You’ll drive by the legendary Calumet Farm with its breeding and racing dynasty that dominated racing during the 1940s and 1950s. You’ll travel to the filming sites of movies such as “Secretariat,” “Seabiscuit” and “Dreamer.” The tour provides transportation, a live expert guide and twice daily start-times, rain or shine. It varies slightly by  seasons with visits to the race track being limited to mostly morning tours during race season in April and October. From $42 per person.

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Unique Horse Farm Tours with Inside Access to Private Farms

(Photo: Unique horse farm tours / Courtesy

This tour takes visitors to horse farms that are usually closed to the public. It’s an opportunity to get an up close look at the work that goes into raising and caring for thoroughbreds. The tour visits three different horse facilities, including some of the biggest names in the business. It includes time for participants to meet and interact with the horses, sometimes feeding them their favorite peppermint treats. The guide shares information about the facilities and families who have been raising horses for generations. The three-hour tour starts twice daily and travels to the farms in an air-conditioned bus. From $49 per person.

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Full-Day Lexington Farm Tour with Clay Pigeon Shooting

This is the tour for you if you want a full-day experience that includes a hands-on sporting activity. The tour starts out at the Blue Grass Sportsmen’s League where participants get to spend the morning trapshooting clay pigeons. Tour participants get exclusive access to what is often called the finest shooting facilities in the state for skeet, trap or sporting clays. After an hour and a half of shooting, the tour stops for lunch and then visits three horse farms. You’ll tour three horse barns with 62 stalls and an indoor training track. Visitors get to meet the horses–including the broodmares and foals. Another popular stop is the Thoroughbred Center where young yearlings are getting exercise by swimming. This experience requires a minimum of four participants. Rates starting at $199 per person.

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Visit Claiborne Farm

Even the late Queen of England couldn’t resist touring this farm–she did it twice.  This farm has built a reputation as one of the most iconic thoroughbred breeding farms in Kentucky. It’s produced more than 300 Derby winners and is the burial grounds for the legendary Secretariat, all of which you can see when you schedule a tour at the farm. They offer daily one-hour tours through their iconic stallion barns, visiting with their current stallions. They take you to their famous cemetery where more than 20 champions are buried. These tours run twice a day at 10 a.m. and 11 a.m. For a higher fee ($600), they offer private tours. Throughout the year they offer special-event tours including one that takes visitors around the farm on their electric shuttles (twice a week). From $11 per person.

Book at Claiborne Farm.