How to Visit an Alpaca Farm in Utah

Rene Cizio
Courtesy of Zion Alpacas

I found Zion Alpacas on Airbnb and, of course, learning I could play with alpacas, mini donkeys, baby doll sheep, goats, silky chickens, and highland cows, I booked my adventure immediately.

I’m not sure if there is an animal that amuses me more than a llama or an alpaca. Do you know they’re different animals? Yep. They have different ears (llamas are longer), face shapes (alpaca have a shorter face) and fur. Alpacas are generally used for their fur and llamas are used as pack animals.

I found Zion Alpacas on Airbnb, where you can rent a casita for the night and feed the animals in the morning if you’d like! I don’t know why you’d rent a place there if you didn’t want to mingle with the animals. It’d be really funny if you didn’t realize you were staying on an alpaca farm and woke up to them staring in your window. Anyway, I digress. I just love these beasts and get sidetracked.

The farm is in Hurricane, Utah, just northeast of St. George, in a little farming community made up of adobe-style houses.
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When I arrived, there was already another couple present and our host making four people total and one little black sheep who was so rambunctious and bleating loudly I couldn’t help but notice. He happily followed us (the host) around for the entire hour-long tour.

There were also goats penned up nearby, whose eyes I stealthy avoided looking into lest I get hypnotized by the devil. I’m just sayin’. Those sideways slanted eyes aren’t natural.

While we waited in a shady area, the host, Amy, went and got the alpacas and one llama. They trotted over in what I found to be the funniest way ever. Alpaca and llamas are hilarious. Their big eyes, long necks and curious, mild-mannered personalities are amusing; I don’t care who they are.
Courtesy of Zion Alpacas

The host gave us jars of pellet feed and I fed them from my hand. They don’t have teeth in the front and it was like feeding a cow or horse. They jostled for position and brayed at each other in competition for the food. They each were colored differently and their faces were as distinct as any humans.

I even fed one from my mouth by holding a baby carrot between my lips and letting one of the alpacas take it. That may have been when I actually fell in love.

Then, to make the experience even more magical, Amy harnessed a couple of alpacas and we went for a walk down the long driveway. My alpaca, Friday, went along gamely and we made fast friends. We promised to send each other postcards wherever we go.
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After our walk, the alpacas went off to do whatever alpacas do and we held some of the soft, fancy chickens. They seemed to like the attention and petting and were as docile as cats and about as easy to wrangle.

The farm sits on about four acres of property and we walked to the back to brush the long-haired mini Highland Cows. I joked that we were happily paying Amy to do her farm chores and she didn’t disagree.

As we brushed their long, wavy, woolly coats, we also saw Kunekune pigs and mini donkeys. The donkeys kept their backs turned to us and I got a distinct impression that they thought we were the donkeys – paying to do farm chores and all.
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We watched the alpacas hilariously wander around the farm (everything they do is hilarious, it’s not just me) and before we left, we fed the two small black baby doll sheep from bottles. That seemed to calm those rambunctious little fellows down finally.

All in all, it was the best hour I’ve spent in a long time and I’d happily do it again.

Find Zion Alpacas on Airbnb.

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Solo road tripping through the USA in my van. Seeking adventure, culture, and self-improvement. Follow on TW & IG @renecizio

Chicago, IL

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