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“Don’t Be Sheepish About Taking This Tour!”
Review of Akaroa Farm Tours

Akaroa Farm Tours
Ranked #9 of 23 Tours in Akaroa
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: 2-3 hours
Mississauga, Ontario, Canada
Level 3 Contributor
16 reviews
14 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
“Don’t Be Sheepish About Taking This Tour!”
Reviewed March 7, 2012

We booked our tour at Murray & Sue’s Paua Bay farm based on the magnificent Trip Advisor reports we had read and we’re glad we did. Actually, we learned more and had much more fun than we had anticipated. Right from the moment Bruce (Murray’s father-in-law) met us in Akaroa and drove us up to the farm, we felt like part of the family. Murray began with his recollection of the family’s farming history, giving valuable insights into the struggles of farm life in early NZ. The shearing demonstration given by Hannah (Murray’s daughter-in-law) was amazing (3min 30 sec.) and watching the dogs round up the sheep and drive them over 100 yards to come and see us was unbelievable. Finally it was time to relax with the family, sipping tea, eating homemade scones and enjoying the beautiful gardens and ocean views. Without a doubt, our visit to Murray & Sue’s was definitely the best excursion during our cruise.

Visited February 2012
Helpful?
5 Thank Ian L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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126 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Any
English first
Redmond, WA, USA
Level 6 Contributor
194 reviews
84 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 103 helpful votes
“Best thing we did in New Zealand”
Reviewed February 20, 2012

We stopped in Akaroa on a Celebrity Cruise. We had decided to join friends for a tour of a NZ sheep ranch to see sheep shearing and sheep herding by the Kiwi sheep dogs. We had heard from some other cruisers who had done this in Napier that it was a great experience and we wanted to try it. We love dogs so that part would be wonderful.
In Napier they had gone to a really big sheep farm that was pretty much set up as a tourist ranch that really did the "tour thing." We on the other hand wound up at a family-owned sheep ranch on a small tour with only eight other people. We were headed off on a visit to the Paua Bay Farm a more than 100-year-old sheep ranch in one of the most beautiful settings you can imagine. When we arrived we were warmly greeted by Murray, the owner and taken to the shearing shed. Murray told us his daughter-in-law usually did the shearing (in fact she was scheduled to compete in a competition the next day where she would shear 100 sheep) but she was at a funeral so he would be doing the honors himself. But first he told us the story of his ranch. Now normally this is the place where I would have fallen asleep but I love a good story and even more, I love a good story-teller. Murray is a MASTER! He tells you from his point of view how he and his wonderful wife Sue became the 5th generation of his family to own and run the farm and how he hopes that his son and daughter-in-law will one day take it over. The story is a great one. There are times when I even had a tear in my eye. If he had just told us the story and taken us back to the ship, that would have been enough for me. But once we knew how he and his family had gotten there he brought out a HUGE sheep and proceeded to shear her down to next to nothing. Amazing how fast that sheep was hairless.
And then for this dog lover it got even better as we went up the hill to the sheep pens with one of their many dogs. We kind of just assumed that their dogs would be Australian collie shepherds or border collies but we were surprised to learn they were a cross breed of border collie and greyhound that made them not only smart and quick but blazingly fast. Murray ran them up and down the hills and moved them from paddock to paddock just by whispering to the dog that he had brought with him. It was truly amazing to see.
After the sorting and herding we headed back down to meet Murray's wife Sue and see their home as well. We were also invited for afternoon tea with wonderful scones and delicious jams. Their gardens are gorgeous and their home was beautiful. Most of the buildings on the property (including the rebuilding of their house) had been done by Murray's best friend, Sue's father. It was he who chauffeured us to and from downtown Akaroa. We left Paua Bay Farm happy and full and headed back to the ship.
We cannot recommend this tour enough. It was worth every penny we paid for it and you can find out all the details by going to their website.

Visited January 2012
Helpful?
7 Thank DrKoob
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
arkansas
Level 3 Contributor
17 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
“Experience a working sheep farm”
Reviewed February 20, 2012

Murray and Sue do a delightful job share there stories of the workings of a real New Zealand sheep farm. We found it most intresting when Murray talks about the many generations that have past since the farm was first establiished and what lies for the future generations. The whole experience was really enjoyable from meeting all the family, watching the dogs work, the sheep shearing and of course visiting their house and beautiful surroundings. One of our favorite tours when we visited NZ/AU.

Visited February 2012
Helpful?
3 Thank rondee00
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Shanghai
1 review
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“A valuable discovery in Akaroa”
Reviewed February 12, 2012

It could be an interesting discovery for the people living in big cities, and this is what I was thinking when I did my booking. After 2 hour in the farm, you could know the family history in Akaroa, afterwards, enjoy some farm activities with sheep and finish with some coffees, biscuits and short stay in their charming garden. Beautiful view to the Paua Bay and very warm people. It is a very nice memory in our trip to New Zealand.
Following the directions given in the email, we got there on time but not easy driving. If you go there yourself, recommend you to contact Murray before.

Visited January 2012
Helpful?
1 Thank Cheng S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ojai
Level 3 Contributor
17 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
“Baa Baa White Sheep”
Reviewed February 6, 2012

The Diamond Princess took us to Akaroa and to Murray's and Sue's beautiful home...complete with sheep, a fabulous drive to the farm and a beautiful home. Who knew sheep love to be hugged?! This was the BEST of all of our trip tours....which were great as well.
This is a must see destination!!!!! Oh, the scones and tea were a perfect ending to the tour! Worth every penny.....and more.

Visited January 2012
Helpful?
3 Thank Beth j
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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