Living the Ocala Lifestyle

Ocala is home to more than 1,200 horse farms, which makes for a vibrant equestrian community!

Ocala is known as the “Horse Capital of the World.” With 1,200+ horse farms and more than 50 known breeds of horses throughout Marion County, it is staggering to consider the impact these stately animals have had on the Ocala community.

Nowhere else in the world will you find this combination of superior natural footing, beautiful weather year-round, countless numbers of equine competitions, and a seemingly unlimited number of retail services that focus solely on horses.

Ocala is home to a vast number of competitions that will keep you busy every weekend of the year. Ocala is proud to be home to the winter circuit hunter/jumper show, HITS; the Florida Horse Park, which hosts a number of eventing, dressage, and driving competitions; and the 70,000-acre, 110-mile corridor Greenway Trail System, where you can hack your horses out for long beautiful trail rides. The World Equestrian Center South is slated to open for events in 2018 as well!

So what’s there to do after you’ve ridden your horses in Ocala? Plenty! At the end of the day, Ocala has so much to offer. We have numerous Country Clubs with some of the best golf courses around. Many of these offer beautiful gyms, tennis facilities, spa treatments, and fantastic dining options. Every year, we are thrilled to welcome great new independent restaurants that are making quite a splash! The coast is just a short drive as well as the beaches. There are so many great areas within the county to snorkel, kayak through beautiful clear waters. In addition, Ocala’s downtown and historic district is experiencing a renaissance, with restaurants, cafes and specialty boutiques catering to the growing, more sophisticated. Additionally, we have great shopping with most every national store represented making Ocala a very convenient place to live.

And when you want to get out of town, there is plenty to do that is still close by. With Orlando only 76 miles away, an hour’s drive to the south gets you to Walt Disney World and all the other major theme parks in the area. An hour’s drive to the west takes you to the Gulf of Mexico, and just 64 miles to the east is the Atlantic Ocean! What’s more, Gainesville, home to the University of Florida and its infamous Gators, is only 35 miles to the north; so, if you want to enjoy the ambiance of life in a college town, nothing could be easier.

For the horse lover, there’s no better place in the United States to maintain a ranch

We always enjoy the chance to talk first-hand about our deep roots and love for Ocala/Marion County. We are honored to have been on the cover of, and share our story with one of the area’s most-read magazines, Ocala Style. Ultimately, our success belongs to our community and the entire Ocala Horse Properies family, with whom we share our passion for our home, Ocala.

— The Ocala Horse Properties Team

Hometown Faves!

When we’re not playing matchmakers to buyers and their new homes, we’re hitting up our favorite Ocala hot spots with each other, our friends, and our families.

See some of our favorites here!

Ocala News & Events

Fabulous Furball and VOCAL Pets For Adoption This Month!

Please Continue To Support and Adopt Animals Through VOCAL! We will continue to post featured animals who are currently in foster care with VOCAL, but waiting to find their forever home! This week we have one of each four legged variety. Meet Frank the Foster Father kitty! Frank came to VOCAL after being found in the... more

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2018 Season Highlights at HITS Ocala

2018 Season Highlights at Ocala Horse Properties’ Grand Prix Stadium at HITS Ocala! HITS Post Time Farm is the central hub for Hunter, Jumper and Equitation riders in the Marion County region. Wednesday through Sunday the facility is buzzing with show activity, as the organizers of HITS provide an impressive variety of A-rated divisions for... more

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Ocala Horse Properties Returns as Title Sponsor of 2018 Eventing Prix

For the 5th consecutive year, Ocala Horse Properties enthusiastically returns as the title sponsor for the OHP Eventing Prix, being held March 5th & 6th, at Southern Cross... more

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Expanding With a New Location

We are excited to announce that we are moving into the Golden Hills Shopping Center plaza in February, 2018 and renovating more than 3,000 square feet of space in this critical northwest hub. The Castro Family, longtime Ocala/Marion County residents continue to contribute to the improvement of the community by overseeing a $1.5 million... more

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Winter Arts, Culture, and Entertainment in Downtown Ocala

The winter months in Ocala offer many opportunities to soak in our local culture, by experiencing the arts in downtown Ocala. Discover why entertainment options within the city limits of Ocala perfectly compliment the lifestyle and rural beauty of Marion County. First Impressions at the Brick City Center for the Arts kicked off 2018 with... more

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The VOCAL Pup of the Week is Ready for Adoption!

Love Animals? Get Involved and Get VOCAL! Last month we announced our partnership with VOCAL; the Voices of Change Animal League in Marion County which is dedicated to homeless animal prevention. VOCAL is on a no-kill mission to help our community reduce the homeless animal population through education and prevention. Achieving their objectives is... more

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‘Tis the Season to Celebrate, Ocala!

During the holidays, Ocala Horse Properties reminds everyone to take time to relax and enjoy festive moments with loved ones. There are plenty of fun activities scheduled in Marion County, so plan a day or evening out celebrating in our community. The Following is a Family Friendly Event Schedule Compliments of Explore Ocala. Kirby Family... more

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VOCAL; Voices of Change Animal League

OHP Gets VOCAL About Animal Adoption Ocala Horse Properties is on a mission, and it’s one that rings true with so many animal lovers in Marion County. Our rural region is home to many animals, some of which are in need of adoption and care. Matt Varney, and the Desino Brothers share more than a... more

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Your Dream Farm – In The Sun!

Everything is covered in snow – except for warm, beautiful Ocala! You and your horses deserve to be warm and dry. Find your dream farm in the sun! Winter Storm Benji has brought snow to parts of south and coastal Texas and will blanket a 2,000 mile-long path from the Deep South and Northeast this weekend.... more

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Winter Season Is Nearly Upon Us!

2018 HITS Ocala Winter Show HITS Ocala Continues A Full Roster of Competitions and Amenities For more information on all of the amenities that HITS has to offer, and the complete schedule of classes and events, please visit Now Is The Time to Buy In... more

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The Upcoming Ocala Jockey Club International 3 Day Event

Ocala Jockey Club Honors The Thoroughbred There’s $100K in prize money offered at this year’s event, of which $25K is allocated to the Thoroughbred Eventing Championship division, a reflection of the region’s dedication to the Thoroughbred breed. The Thoroughbred industry is quite robust in the Ocala region, with many large breeding and... more

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World Equestrian Center’s New Arena is Simply Amazing

World Equestrian Center and Golden Ocala Golf & Equestrian Club Announce 140,000-square-foot Arena.... more

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World Equestrian Site Map

36th Annual Marion County Chili Cook-off Nov. 4th

Educators Become Creative Hosts During the 36th Annual Marion County Chili Cook-Off! The Cornerstone School is an independent Pre-K through Middle school located in Ocala which fosters creative learning within our community. The school has been a wonderful resource for residents looking for an environment of independent learning. Not only is the... more

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Brace Yourselves For An Intense Winter!

Winter is Coming! This year, most of the southern states are predicted to have a dry, mild winter, while the northern part of the nation will be hit with exceptionally wet and cold conditions. Winter officially begins on December 1st. But depending on the location you live, the cold weather can begin well before or... more

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Green Light For Ocala, Florida World Equestrian Center!

Now is The Time to Buy Your Dream Farm in Ocala! Upon approval at last night’s Marion County Commissioner’s Meeting, the World Equestrian Center in Ocala, Florida has now been granted the go-ahead to begin further development of this world class equine venue and community. Ocala Horse Properties eagerly anticipates the positive impact that... more

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Prime Season is Right Around The Corner!

The summer is winding down and fall activities in Ocala are ramping up. Soon we will experience the mass migration of equestrians moving to Marion County for the beginning of the 2017/18 show season! Each year we see a steady rise in the number of avid equestrians relocating their training operations to Ocala earlier in... more

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Fun Fall Festivals and Events in Ocala

Summer is Coming to An End The height of summer is waning, and during the warmer August days, there’s a subtle shift in our region, as locals and businesses gear up for the beginning of next season here in Ocala. Ocala Horse Properties is looking forward to the fall, when the light takes on a... more

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Downtown Hotel Project To Begin Fall 2017

Local Hotelier Danny Gaekwad has been steadfast in his approach to the new Downtown Hotel project, located at the old Chamber of Commerce Building, near the historic Downtown Square. Project delays have all been taken in stride, as the hotel construction is subject to space and historic district limitations, with both the city and Gaekwad... more

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Liz Halliday-Sharp & Deniro Z Hot at Barbury Castle!

The team at Ocala Horse Properties continues to be wowed by the spectacular performance of Liz Halliday-Sharp and Deniro Z as they continue their winning streak in Europe! Last season the Desino brothers decided that the best way to continue their support of the sport of eventing was through horse ownership, thus becoming the primary... more

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Great News for Ocala Wine Lovers!

Downtown Ocala continues to expand, and adding to your options for new experiences in the Downtown Square is the grand opening of the Sokol Vineyards Tasting Room on July 27th, 2017! In the same vicinity as the new Downtown Hotel, the Sokol Vineyards Tasting Room project has been underway for the past several months in... more

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Ocala Riders Top Devon’s Inaugural Arena Eventing Competition!

With Arena Eventing growing in popularity throughout the US, The Devon Horse Show joined in the enthusiasm by showcasing the sport of eventing to the masses at this year’s inaugural Arena Eventing competition. The new exhibition class, which consisted of a combination of solid cross country and show jumping fences, drew large crowds despite the... more

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BBQ, Whiskey, & Summer Eats In Ocala!

Summer is approaching, and that conjures up thoughts of easy summer evenings and a casual night out on the town with friends. So slide on your flip flops and meet us downtown to continue our tour of Ocala’s best restaurants and gathering places. In our most recent article on Downtown Ocala, we shared news about... more

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Downtown Hotel & Farm Market Revitalization On Tap!

Downtown Ocala is enjoying a surge in revitalization projects, giving Marion County residents and tourists even more reasons to live, work, and play in our area! In and around the Historic Downtown Square, there are more choices on tap for dining, retail and outdoor entertainment, adding to the reasons to call Ocala home. Construction projects... more

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Ocala is Forbes #5 for Job Growth!

According to Forbes online, Ocala is ranked fifth in the country for new job growth! Higher job growth is a sign of a healthy, steadily growing local economy, and Ocala is the place to be! Forbes predicts that the annual job growth will be 3.4%, which will mean 17% more jobs in the next five years.... more

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Renovations to Renowned Equestrian Hot Spot Underway!

If you’re in Ocala on vacation, for the winter season, or if you’re a bonafide local, one thing is for certain, you’ve been to the Horse & Hounds for a meal and a drink. Located at the intersection of US Highway 27 and 225-A NW 70th Avenue, the Golden Hills Center is home to a... more

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Liz Halliday-Sharp & Deniro Z Continue Their Winning Ways

Liz and Deniro Z are on a roll, and the team at Ocala Horse Properties couldn’t be prouder of this talented pair. It was a thrilling grand finale to the eventing season in Ocala, with Liz Halliday-Sharp and Deniro Z claiming another wire to wire win in the 2* division at the Ocala International 3... more

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Courtney Varney Featured in The Chronicle of the Horse

See how Courtney keeps herself busy, be it her equestrian accomplishments, four-month-old baby Hudson, or her career as an equine veterinarian in the “Amateurs Like Us” section of their blog. Courtney is the wife of Ocala Horse Properties broker Matt Varney. She is an accomplished equestrian, and the article notes her achievements... more

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Dining Diversity in Ocala’s Historic Downtown Square #LivinginOcala

There are several restaurants located in Downtown Square that we love to frequent. Each has it’s own distinct menu, specialty drinks, and ambiance, serving up a variety of fantastic dining experiences and fun evenings out on the town. Through our series of articles, Living In Ocala, we’re going to feature some of our top restaurant... more

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Ocala Horse Properties Backs Liz Halliday-Sharp & Deniro Z!

The team at Ocala Horse Properties met Liz Halliday-Sharp and her husband Al Sharp in 2013 when they were actively looking for an equestrian property in Ocala. During their quest to find the perfect home for Horsepower Equestrian, a friendship was formed between Chris, Rob, Matt, Liz and her husband Al. Attending Ocala area events... more

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