The California Bucket List: Your daily guide to the best adventures and experiences in the Golden State

Upscale Blackberry Farm has animals to match

At Tennessee's upscale Blackberry Farm, the animals include truffle-hunting dogs and riding horses

Not only can you be pampered at Blackberry Farm, but you can experience a dog breeding center.

You can go home with a $3,000 Italian truffle-hunting dog ($6,000 if you have Blackberry Farm train it).

In February I visited its Lagotto Romagnolo dog breeding center, where 23 puppies romped. This breed looks like a curlier, lighter-colored Portuguese water dog, and these dogs make loving, hypoallergenic pets.

On a return visit I would like to try Blackberry Farm's horsemanship experience. With a fully equipped Western and English tack room and well-bred horses, you can learn to ride in the arena, go on trail rides in the Smoky Mountains or gallop across fields.

You also can take a daylong natural horsemanship classes, delving into the psychology between humans and horse.


If you go


From LAX, Delta, American, United and US Airways offer connecting service (change of planes) to Knoxville, Tenn. Restricted round-trip fares from $462, including taxes and fees. It's about a 25-minute drive to the farm.

Blackberry Farm, (800) 557-8864, Doubles from $745 a night with a two-night minimum. Includes all meals from dinner on day of arrival through lunch on day of departure, all snacks and nonalcoholic beverages.

WELLNESS VACATIONS: Going on vacation and returning healthier | A guide to wellness vacations | Look beyond the price | Some select hotels' and resorts' wellness programs | Blackberry Farm guests grow healthy 

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