Thanks to the kindness of the Young America’s Foundation, YBF was able to visit the Ronald Reagan Ranch outside of Santa Barbara in California. Ronald and Nancy Reagan used it as an oasis of calm far away from the politics of Washington D.C. during his time in office.
It was once said by former First Lady Nancy Reagan, to truly know Ronald Reagan the man, you must go to the Ranch. The peaceful, tranquil surroundings are truly awe inspiring. Wild horses roam the grounds untroubled in a place he called Rancho Del Cielo, the ‘Ranch in the Sky.’
Ronald Reagan himself described it like this:
“From the first day we saw it, Rancho Del Cielo cast a spell over us. No place before or since has ever given Nancy and me the joy and serenity it does.”
Set in 600 acres of land, the centrepiece is the house itself, a humble abode restored to its original state. During his time there, Reagan personally built most of the Ranch himself, including the fence made out of old telephone polls that surrounds the house.
Reagan loved the Ranch so much he often invited world leaders and friends to visit him there. In 1993 Margaret Thatcher finally got the chance to visit Ronald and Nancy’s beloved presidential retreat. Their special relationship allowed them to achieve much during their time in power on both sides of the Atlantic. Lady Thatcher said a final goodbye with a heartfelt, emotional eulogy at his funeral in 2004. Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh also visited in 1983. Despite the winding road and treacherous weather, the Queen insisted on making the journey. Continue reading