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.

— 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!

#LivinginOcalaNews and Events

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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Day Tripping To Ocala National Forest and The Springs! #LivinginOcala

Ocala topography is unique to Florida in its wide open spaces and rolling hills, which is ideal for raising cattle and equine livestock. Known as the “Horse Capital of the World”, that title is easily identifiable as one travels the roads of Ocala, taking in the magnificent views of horse properties and grazing cattle. Perhaps... more

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Combined Driving, Bike Riding, and Symphonic Pleasures! #LivinginOcala

Weekend Entertainment Abounds in Marion County with International Driving Competition, Fat Tire Fun, Plus An Evening at the Symphony! Diversity in choices in Ocala is the theme of this weekend’s line-up of entertainment. There’s a healthy dose of outdoor fun on the calendar, with the FEI Driving Dressage at Live Oak International starting... more

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2017 Eventing Prix Wrap-Up

Sweet Victory for Sara Kozumplik Murphy at the 2017 Ocala Horse Properties’ Eventing Prix! Thirty-three horse and rider combinations entered the ring at Southern Cross Equestrian to battle it out for $15,000 in prize money for the 4th annual Ocala Horse Properties’ Eventing Prix. The entry list read like the who’s who of top international... more

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Culinary Festivals This Week! #LivinginOcala

Culinary Festivals Top This Week’s Entertainment Options in Ocala! It’s true Ocala is “The Horse Capital of the World”, but the greater Marion County region has much more to offer beyond the horse shows and equestrian activities. Our urban center continues to flourish with a multitude of cultural options, and this week Ocala is serving... more

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Ocala Horse Properties Eventing Prix Livestream

It’s Almost Time for the Ocala Horse Properties 2017 Eventing Prix! This will be our 4th annual Eventing Prix Invitational, hosted at Southern Cross Equestrian on March 6th & 7th, 2017. Schedule of events: Monday, March 6th, 12 Noon – Warm Up Class (1.15m) Tuesday, March 7th, 2:00 pm – Eventing Prix Invitational (1.30m) The... more

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2017 Ocala Horse Properties’ Eventing Prix Invitational

2017 Ocala Horse Properties’ Eventing Prix Invitational Ocala Horse Properties enthusiastically returns as Title Sponsor for the 4th annual Eventing Prix Invitational, being hosted once again at Southern Cross Equestrian on March 6th & 7th, 2017. The Eventing Prix was conceived by Olympic Event Rider and Show Jumper, Scott Keach, as an... more

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We are not just realtors, we are Equestrians!

FOR MANY the search for an Ocala farm can be a daunting task. Considering there are more than a thousand farms and endless miles of farm areas to choose... more

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Eclipse Award Finalists Include Ocala-Trained Nyquist

California Chrome Tops Eclipse Award Finalists with Ocala-Trained Nyquist in Consideration for 3-Year-Old Category It is hard to deny the pure talent of California Chrome, who continues to show his longevity in horse racing by dominating the sport 2 years after his impressive show in the 2014 Triple Crown. While most racehorses head to an... more

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Some of OHP’s favorite things about Ocala and HITS #LivinginOcala

When we’re not playing matchmakers to buyers and their new homes, we’re hitting up our favorite hometown spots with each other, our friends, and our families. My favorite slice in Ocala: Chris & Rob – Both of us love Blue Highway Pizza. Having been in the business years ago, it always brings back great memories. Our... more

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Siberian Slap to Hit United States

According to The Weather Channel, a large cold front is moving into the United States this week. The polar jet stream has dipped lower than usual, bringing the frigid winds of Canada into the northern plains and northern Rockies on Monday morning. Subzero wind chills have extended as far south as Kansas, and the colder-than-average temperatures... more

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Ocala Rider Profile: Jennie Brannigan

Rider Jennie Brannigan splits her time between Unionville, PA and Ocala, FL. She specializes in Three Day Eventing and owns Brannigan Eventing. The United States Eventing Association (USEA) recently held its Year-End Awards Ceremony at its annual meeting and convention at the Diplomat Resort and Spa in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.  Among the top... more

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Ocala Culture & Community – History of the Horse & Beyond!

It is true that many people flock to Ocala for the equestrian environment, but there is more to the greater Marion County community than just the horses! When contemplating a move to Florida for your equestrian interests, consider the rich history of Ocala and all the region has to offer. A quick history lesson reveals... more

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Please Help Support The Girls of Horses N Heroes!

We are dedicated to helping the girls of Horses N Heroes, a Marion County 501(c)(3), that is making a huge difference for young ladies who live at or below the poverty level. The opportunity to interact with horses in this program provides a lifeline for these girls who find solace and comfort in their relationships... more

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The 2017 HITS Ocala Winter Season Is Here!

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 the equine industry. Ocala is home to a vast number of competitions that will keep you busy every weekend of the... more

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Ocala Horse Properties Renews Sponsorship With HITS Post Time Farm

Ocala Horse Properties has signed on to continue their support of the 2016/2017 show season as the Official Realtor of HITS Post Time Farm in Ocala! The team at Ocala Horse Properties is looking forward to another season of top level competition at HITS, valuing this partnership and the positive impact HITS has had on... more

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Plantation Field Honors Winner of CIC 3* and Bronze Medalist Phillip Dutton

This past weekend the Mid-Atlantic region kicked off the fall eventing season in style with Plantation Field International Horse Trials, located in Unionville, Pa.   The event world saw a large number of entries at this CIC International event, with nearly all of the members of the US Olympic eventing team there competing. Hometown Olympians,... more

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Grand Oaks Resort Hosts Ocala Region Paralympian Training Camp!

The Rio Olympics have concluded and now it’s time for the Paralympians to descend upon Rio! The US Paralympic Team traveled to Ocala in preparation for their turn in Rio, and their training camp wrapped up with a mock competition at Grand Oaks Resort in neighboring Weirsdale. The resort was gracious enough to share several... more

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2016-17 Weather Predictions Mean More Snow!

Are you a believer in the Old Farmer’s Almanac? Historical data shows that this old fashion weather source is more than rural legend, with an 80% accuracy rate over the past two centuries! General Long-Range Weather 2017 from the Farmer’s Almanac “Get ready for a shift from last year! For the winter of 2016–2017, we... more

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