We love a farm stay. The kids get to collect eggs, feed horses and get back to nature. We parents, get to chill out on the porch with a glass of wine and some cheese while the kids run through the paddocks.
The NSW Riverina is bordered by Victoria and the Great Dividing Range. Known as Australia’s Food Bowl, its warm weather, flat plains and ample water supply make it one of the most fertile regions in the country.
Mum and dad can explore NSW’s most prolific wine-growing region, kids can pick apples at Batlow and the family can enjoy boat rides along the Murrumbidgee River and its waterways.
The Riverina inspired one of Australia’s most beloved bush poets, Banjo Paterson. Families can follow his tracks on The Road to Gundagai or see the rugged Snowy Valley countryside which moved him to write The Man From Snowy River.
If you’re not keen on getting too close to the wild bush horses, take in the Boggy Creek Show in the Snowy Valley where you can see horsemanship, whip cracking and mustering in action.
These are the top seven Riverina farmstays, many of which are pet-friendly.
1218 Nangus Rd, Nangus, NSW, 2722
Channel your inner jackaroo and stay on this 7000-acre working farm.
The Shearer’s Quarters sleeps 12, making it ideal for two or three families travelling together. If you want to bring your dog along, Windies and Daleys are two- and three-bedroom workers cottages that have a fenced in yard.
Explore the region’s cellar doors, including Borambola Wines and Paterson’s Gundagai Vineyard and take the family on the Architectural Heritage Walk, which includes the Gundagai Heritage Railway and Old Gundagai Gaol.
3241 Hume Hwy, Mount Adrah, Tumblong , NSW 2729
This luxury farm stay is pet-friendly and comes with all the mod cons, including a Tesla charging station.
Choose from one of seven options, ranging from one to four bedroom 4.5-star cottages or glamping tents.
The 1000 acre property is yours to explore and kids are encouraged to feed the animals. Don’t miss the buggy ride and bedtime session where they can ride the buggy, see the resident kangaroos at sunset and feed the cows, alpacas, miniature horse and more. Hillview has a swimming pool, tennis court, billiard table and fire pit where you can toast marshmallows.
You can also bring your horse, who will enjoy exclusive use of 8-12 acres of paddock to stretch their legs after a long drive.
1823 Carrathool Rd, Carrathool via Hay, NSW 2711
Stay for two nights or longer and book a farm tour with Bruce, who will proudly show off his 17,000-acre working farm. Meet the merino sheep flock, visit the 1920’s shearing shed that’s still used to this day and discover how he grows rice, cotton, rye and grass.
This outback homestead boasts a pool, tennis court, bush walking tracks and campfires. Pet-friendly accommodation options for families include The Barracks, a charming two-bedroom cottage with a queen and a twin room or Maxies Retreat, a six-bedroom lodge designed to mimic the shearers quarters, but with modern amenities.
Farm 43 Cox Rd, Hanwood NSW 2680
This family-owned, award-winning farm just eight hours from Griffith is one of the oldest in the district, with the original mud-brick farmhouse built in 1912.
Rest assured the three bedroom, self-contained cottage accommodation that sleeps seven is a lot more modern. Hosts Joe and Sharon will also take visitors along on a Farm Safari. The 90-minute journey is in air-conditioned comfort on the farm bus, where you’ll take in over 60 different types of fruits and nuts plus stop along the way to pick some straight from the source.
McRories Rd, Yerong Creek NSW 2642
Handily located midway between Sydney and Melbourne, Hanericka Guest House has been introducing guests to the charms of country life for the last 30 years. Children get a kick out of hand feeding everything from chickens to poddy lambs and even camels. They even get to test out their stockmen skills by rounding up the horses for saddling and riding. The property also has tennis courts, bushwalking tracks and a swimming pool.
Adelong Valley Farm Stays
113 Macks Rd, Adelong, NSW, 2729
Adelong sprawls over the pristine Snowy Valley at the base of the Snowy Mountains. Families can choose between the Tracton Homestead which sleeps eight on a 1100-acre working sheep and cattle station or Moorallie Cottage which sleeps five on a 1000-acre working farm.
Adelong is part of the NSW Gold Trails and families can explore the historic Adelong Falls Gold Mill Ruins and get back to nature at the Yarrangobilly Caves and Thermal Pool, which were created 440 million years ago.
For those who enjoy a wander, the Sugar Pine Walk is a path among towering trees planted in 1928. Or try the Blowering Dam and Cliffs Walk, with the granite cliffs overlooking Blowering Reservoir.
Wallendbeen Park Farm
Cullinga Rd, Wallendbeen, NSW, 2588
As you drive up the driveway to this former school house, you’ll be greeted by the unofficial welcoming committee of kangaroos. Wallendbeen’s guest cottage sleeps four. This is the place to go if you want that real farm experience.
Kids can collect farm-fresh eggs. Families can also forage in the garden for produce. If you feel like getting your hands dirty, owner Annie encourages guests to join her in daily activities from farm walks to feeding the free-range, heritage Berkshire pigs and mending fences.