We won’t deny there is a common misconception that a ‘farm stay’, in a nutshell, equals kiddos running feral, animals galore and mud. Lots of mud. Stereotypes aside, it’s actually the perfect opportunity to combine the ‘great outdoors’ with the luxury of a cozy interior for fresh spring nights. We’ve put together an awesome list of some of the greatest farm stays in Australia; from a towering limestone house on a timber plantation in WA’s renowned wine region, to a light-filled barn in Victoria”s Heathcote. We’ve found options that are fit for families, friends or couples after a romantic getaway…many with no animals in sight!
Written by Jade Just – Contributing Travel Editor. Cover image, The Barn at Heathcote.
The Barn, Heathcote, Victoria
We admit, we’re having a hard time trying to decide whether we’re more excited about the location or the accommodation itself at this amazing farm stay. The American-style barn packs in serious ‘interior goals’ with a rustic white interior and features such as a library, open wood fire and homely farm kitchen. Location wise, it’s ideal for food and wine lovers – highlights include Tahbilk Winery (the oldest winery in Victoria), the famous pies at Tooborac Pub (grab em fresh or get some frozen ones for an easy dinner) and Heathcote Harvest who specialise in paddock to plate lunches and dinners, paired with terrific drops from the region.
From $200 per night. Click here for more details.
Twamley Farm, Buckland, Tasmania
On Tassie’s east coast is the charming Twamley Farm just an hour drive from Hobart. The farm offers a range of accomodation including a quaint 1840s covered stable, futuristic ‘farm pod’, luxury bell tent and also the offsite Storekeeper’s Boutique Accommodation. You can jump on a mountain bike and explore the many bush trails, meet the farm animals including the mini donkeys – Frida and Poncho (yes, MINI DONKEYS!) – or try your hand at bird watching or trout fishing.
From approx $165* per night (*depending on accommodation type). Click here for more details.
Cortes Kiln, Gapsted, NSW
This one is specifically for couples and it’s far from your standard farm stay. The accommodation is an architecturally designed restoration of a 100-year-old tobacco kiln with loads of natural light surrounded by a huge, stunning garden – the perfect place to unwind with a book and a picnic rug. Walnut Farm is next-door, guests can walk through the ginormous orchard or ride the bikes down to the river for a swim, and close by there is the award winning Gapsted Winery (we suggest stocking up so you can enjoy a wine in the bath, which overlooks the Kiln’s internal courtyard).
From $210 per night. Click here for more details.
Forest Grove House, Witchcliffe, Western Australia
There are a bazillion reasons why this rustic farmhouse is one of our favourite places to stay in the famous Margaret River Wine Region, so we’ll try to do it justice. Boasting six bedrooms (10 beds) it’s a great spot for a getaway with a few couples or families, and with huge ceilings (14m high to be exact!) and church-like french-glazed windows you’ll never feel crowded. The working timber farm has limited phone reception and no TV, which means you’re gratefully forced to enjoy everything the property has to offer. From watching the sun set over the surrounding paddocks while the kangaroos and possums venture out for the night, to tiptoeing up to nearby shrubs to spot vivid Splendid Wrens…there is loads to do without a phone in sight. If you decide to do some exploring you’re just a stone’s throw from world-class wineries, restaurants and also the beautiful Redgate Beach.
From $450 per night. Click here for more details.
Halcyon Cottage Retreat, Gippsland, Victoria
If picturesque views are on your ‘must have’ accommodation checklist then you won’t be disappointed by the gorgeous Halcyon Cottage Retreat, a 40 acre working farm in Gippsland – just a hop, skip and jump from Melbourne. In the cottage you’ll be greeted by a super modern interior not to mention an amazing vista of Wild Dog Valley through the huge picture windows. Aside from the farm animals and bird life on the farm (great for kids!) you can fill your ‘to do’ list with wine tasting, walking trails and visits to the local art galleries and providores.
From $295 per night. Click here for more details.
Tommerup’s Dairy Farm, Kerry Valley, Queensland
Tommerup’s Dairy Farm is THE place to go if you’ve got kids who are keen for the full ‘working farm’ experience (yup, the exact stereotype we described!). Animal and farm lovers will be beside themselves with opportunities to feed calves, sheep, pigs and chickens, and join in with general farm chores such as milking the cows (fab for energetic kids). There are only two guest houses to choose from, meaning that your family get plenty of one-on-one time with the farm family. The guest houses have their own kitchens however you can also take a night off and order a gourmet hamper or take a trip to the onsite farm larder where you can buy restaurant quality grass fed veal, milk fed heritage breed pork and lamb as well as Scenic Rim products.
From $310* per night (*depending on accommodation type). Click here for more details.
Iluka’s Eden Retreat, Clarendon, South Australia
Situated on a whopping 37 acres, this private retreat (which sleeps eight) appeals to a huge range of guests. There are gobsmacking views throughout as well as a fireplace, verandah and variety of wildlife (koalas, birds, horses, and friendly sheep). Location wise it’s incredibly central to Adelaide’s attractions including the beaches, McLaren Vale Wineries and the Adelaide Hills. Spring is a fantastic time to visit Adelaide’s countryside given that Scott Creek Conservation Park and Onkapringa River National Park are a short drive away and are currently teeming with native flora and fauna.
From $290 per night. Click here for more details.
Homevalley Station, Kimberley Region, Western Australia
In WA’s magical far northwest is Home Valley Station, a working cattle station owned by the Indigenous Land Corporation, where you can get your ultimate outback farm experience. This part of Australia is uniquely rustic but also mesmerisingly beautiful. You can swim in natural water holes, walk through ancient gorges or try your hand at cattle mustering, horse riding and barramundi fishing (and then enjoy a pint at the Dusty Bar & Grill). For your digs, there are grass castles nestled alongside the idyllic Bindoola Creek as well as eco-tents, guesthouse rooms or camping facilities if you’re keen to sleep out under the stars.
From approx $135* per night (*depending on accommodation type). Click here for more details.