Southern Cross Ranch/Bed and Breakfast

1670 Bethany Church Road , Madison, GA 30650 USA (Show map)


Named by Travel and Leisure magazine as “One of America’s Best Dude Ranches”, Southern Cross Guest Ranch is a year-around guest ranch, bed & breakfast, and horse farm conveniently nestled in Central Georgia's Historic Heartland and within an hour drive of Atlanta. Home to well over 150 horses, the ranch is best known for its exceptional hands-on horseback riding program, unguided riding opportunities, excellent food, and peaceful, comfortable setting. It’s a bona fide horse lover’s paradise. Riders and non-riders alike will enjoy the pool, game room, mountain bikes, video library, and unlimited snacks, desserts, soft drinks and other beverages. Rates are available with or without meals and horseback riding. Choose from Bed and Breakfast or All-Inclusive rate plans. Our relaxed riding program allows guests to trail ride on their own if they choose. Horses are matched for novice and experienced riders, and lessons are available. There’s something for everyone to enjoy right on site even if it’s just taking a stroll with the horses, fishing, or simply relaxing on one of the many decks and patios. Each room is pleasantly appointed featuring a King-sized bed, Wi-Fi, A/C, TV, DVD, and private bath. Premium rooms offer whirlpools, fireplaces, and delightful views. Experience southern hospitality at its finest on this wonderfully accommodating ranch



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  • Guest room4.8
  • Service4.8
  • Value4.5
  • Cleanliness4.8
  • Onsite Dining4.5


5 on November 17, 2013

well my name is korei & im certainly satisfied with everything southern cross ranch has to offer !! my family will return every year if GOD be willing. we made some irreplaceable memories, some lifelong friends, ate like kings and the healthy happy content horses of your choice are awesome. the staff is precious & very insightful... we were very pleased.......


5 on October 19, 2012

This is a wonderful get away. We are from Florida and have been visiting 1 time a year since we discovered this ranch in 2008. It is such a relaxing fun place to visit especially if you enjoy horses. The only place I know where you get to handle your horse from the corral, to the ride and back to the coral. Trails are wonderful and horses are great. The accommodations are clean and roomy. The food is out of this world southern eating. The staff is like family after a visit. Our cousins drive from Atlanta to visit us there (or to eat). All I can say is a great, retreat.


5 on October 06, 2012

This place is amazing. It is serene and beautiful, the people are incredibly polite and the food is delicious!

Horse lovers dream.

5 on July 03, 2012

My granddaughter and I stayed at the ranch in June and had a great time. Everything and everyone was perfect. There is not place like Sotuher Cross. This was our first trip and will return many times. Each person was so nice and helpful. This was a dream come true for us both . There is so much to do and so much good food to be had plus all the drinks and snacks 24 hours a days. It was really great. Can't wait for our return trip! I did not know Heaven was so close to us. It is so relaxing at the ranch. I could live there with no problems. For anyone who loves horses or just want to get away this is the place to be. Thanks to everyone!!

So Relaxing

4.8 on December 19, 2011

I have been to Southern Cross many times and have never been disappointed with my stay. I go specifically for the horses and they are so well cared for that I wonder if they think they are on a vacation too? I love the personal interaction with the horses. The staff is always friendly and helpful. It is comfortable to go there alone as it is easy to make friends with the other guests. When I turn into the driveway at Southern Cross I can feel the stress melt away for a few days.

Elegant Simplicity & Relaxation at it's BEST

4.6 on November 11, 2011

I take my son here every year for his Birthday & sometimes just to get away w/ a friend. It's SO peaceful & relaxing. The STAFF is always willing to do whatever it takes to make your stay unforgettable. The HORSES are wonderful (not your typical worn out trail horse) Unlike most places, you get more than enough riding time, a horse based on your riding experience, you get to groom & saddle them, go with a guide or off on your own. The guides are extremely knowledgable & are very good w/ instructing, looking out for & setting beginners at ease. And they take VERY good care of their Horses! Spring is a very fun time to visit, as there are usually 8-10 mares ready to foal. If your lucky, you may see one being born. I can't say enough about this Ranch. It will be my retreat for years to come!


4.8 on March 04, 2011

I just needed to relax and the Southern Cross Guest Ranch was perfect choice! It’s a little over an hour from Atlanta, and not far from the highway exit. The staff are so wonderful and accommodating, and make every effort to make you feel at home. The ranch has more than 200 horses, and the trails are beautiful and serene. I rode every day; the staff caters to the novice as well as those with experience. My room was nicely decorated, very roomy and comfortable. It overlooked the pasture with the horses. I enjoyed curling up on the swing by the pool & hot tub with my book before dinner. The food was very good and plentiful, and breakfast was made even better by watching the “babies” galloping by the dining room windows. The staff cheerfully made every accommodation for guests with dietary restrictions. I would highly recommend Southern Cross. I can't wait to go back!

Like visiting family...

4.6 on February 04, 2011

We visited Southern Cross Guest Ranch awhile ago, and we loved it. For the price you would pay for a measly "okay" hotel room, you get your room, 2 horseback riding trips a day, breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks 24 hours a day. Can you beat that value? Nope. When we visited, it was like visiting family. The staff was more than helpful, and when we arrived to check in, the office radioed to the barn to pop us in on the afternoon horseback riding excursion to begin our stay with them. The horses are all well-trained, and when you're ready to head back to the barn, your horse is on auto-pilot (versus barn-sour.) Just let the horse decide which way it wants to go in a fork on the trail, and you'll be back at the barn. This isn't your standard boring trail ride either. YOU choose what route you want to take (if you opted out for a guide which is only available AFTER going out on the trail WITH a guide for your first ride.) When we returned, we were able to shower and relax before the chiming of the dinner bell. The food was excellent and plentiful, and we relaxed the rest of the evening. For something special, try their hydo-massage :) You might need it after a few days of 2-hour trail rides (you can go shorter as well as ride in the ring if you want.) We plan on making Southern Cross (at the very least) an annual trip.

have gone many times...and still counting

4.2 on November 14, 2010

I have been several times. Sometimes it is just with my spouse, and other times we bring the kids. No matter if it is a weekend get away for us as a couple or a family trip, we are never disappointed. We don't call it a bed and breakfast, we call it a working ranch. It's a place to go to completely escape the rat race back home and get back to nature. I just won the ebay trip, so we are going again. who-hoo!


5 on August 28, 2010

Your review Perfection¿ - ¿ - Today I do not think I have the words to describe how wonderful this place is. You really have to experience it for yourself. But here are the highlights. . . #1 The Horses I love T Bone (Legend is a close second) They are beautiful and when you are not riding you can hang out in the pasture and play with them all day long! #2 The People Very friendly and helpful. #3 The Grounds Beautiful, full of places to explore and full of wildlife (deer/rabbits/geese/ducks etc) and not-so-wildlife (the barn cats and dogs were sooooooo cute and friendly). #4 The Rooms Beautiful, comfortable #5 The Food Too good, I ate way more than I had planned. And dont hesitate to come by yourself. . . I did and was never bored a moment.

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Location Type

Countryside, Rural, Secluded, Small town


Atlanta, GA (ATL-Hartsfield Intl.) 58 miles

Directions to property:

Located about 45 minutes east of Atlanta via I-20 or about 35 minutes south of Athens. Take exit 114 (Hwy 441, Madison), and turn right (south). Go 2.5 miles to "Crawford Rd." and turn left. Go to first stop (1 mile) and turn right on to "Bethany Church Rd." Southern Cross Ranch will be 1.0 mile on your left hand side.

Area Attractions

Antique Shopping, Art Galleries, Gourmet/Fine Dining, Historical interests, Lake, National/State parks, Nature area, Horseback riding - - On Site, Picnic area, Religious Services, River, Ruins, University

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Inn Details

Establishment type

Farm, Ranch, Mansion

On-site amenities

Bike rental, Billiards, Board games, CD player, Coffee/Tea facilities, Computer, Conference Rooms, Copier, Desk, Fax Machine, Fridge, Ironing Board, Library, Microwave, Movie library, Parking, Pool, Washer/dryer, Wedding Facilities

Room amenities

Air conditioning, Alarm clock, Ceiling fans, DVD Player, Fireplace, Hairdryer, Hot tub/whirlpool tub, Private entrance, Radio, Satellite/Cable TV, TV, Telephone, Videos, Wi-Fi

On-site activities

Bicycles, Billiards, Fishing, Hiking trails, Horseback riding, Horseshoes, Mountain Bike trails, Shopping, Sight-seeing, Swimming, Table Tennis

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  • Check In:: flexible
  • Check Out:: flexible
  • Open All Year Round: Yes
  • Smoking Allowed: Outside only
  • Drinking Allowed: Yes
  • Alcohol Provided No
  • Suitable For Children: Limited
  • Childcare Provided: No
  • Guest Pets Allowed: Yes May be kept in stables at night with advance notice
  • Disabled Access Limited

Terms and Conditions

  • Minimum Stay: 2 night minimums may apply to select weekends.
  • Accepted payments Other
  • Deposit Amount Required: $50/night
  • Cancellations: Deposits for reservations cancelled greater than 30 day prior to arrival are 85% refundable. For cancellations 7-30 days prior to arrival, deposits are 50% refundable, and less than 7 days are nonrefundable. Timely cancellations allow us to offer your room to other prospective guests.
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Inge & Tom Wendling

Languages spoken

English, German, Spanish

Resident Pets

Dogs , 175 horses

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  • Time Served: 8:00 am
  • Serving Location: Breakfast/dining area

Special meal options

Restrictive , Vegetarian

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