By Karen Shelford

Rotorua Agrodome

Never Been On A Farm? Look Forward To Some FUN then.

Rotorua Agrodome - Who would have thought that people would LOVE, absolutely LOVE,… visiting a FARM SHOW… of all things. It's hilarious.

Rotorua Agrodome sign

But when you think about it, not many people would actually get to milk a real live cow nowadays would they? Not to mention feeding lambs or seeing sheep dogs at work.

To get an idea of the inner workings of a New Zealand farm you can't go far past a visit to this, one of the best attractions in Rotorua. Be prepared to get interactive.

Sheep Show

Do you ever wonder where woollen products come from, or the lanolin used in beauty products? If you're like me, probably not a lot. But yes, they come from sheep.

Keep this in mind if you take in the Sheep Show. There's a process for getting the wool off the sheep's back and onto ours - if you wear wool that is. It has such wonderful natural properties that can be made into knitting wool to keep us warm amongst other things.

You will be taken through the sheep shearing process with live demos, and afterwards get to see how the shearing sheds looked back in the fifties.

Agrodome sheep country, Rotorua, NZAgrodome sheep country - This ram is parked at the front entrance

I tell you, there is nothing like the smell of a shearing shed. As a youngster, holidaying on my grandparents farm down South was like opening Pandora's box. It was magic.

So many fascinating things to see and do. Like jumping on hay bales and watching dust motes flying everywhere, getting a leg-up onto my Granddad's horse and flying straight over the saddle to land in a heap on the other side.

One of my brothers even got his arm caught in a possum trap in the hen house. Now that was ugly -  he got his arm caught in the washing machine ringer once too. Remember those? Truth to tell, he was a bit of a tutū. (That's the Māori word for people who meddle with things they shouldn't.)

Any smells to do with a farm and I am instantly transported back to those days. You can guess what happened as soon as I walked into the Sheep Show room?

Yes, I was right back there in that... sheepy, pooey shearing shed.

If you're not into animal smells?

Once the show starts you'll forget all about it. It's thoroughly entertaining, especially for children, with a lot going on. You'll be too busy paying attention to worry about the smell - I hope.

Once finished it's fascinating to see the wool being carded and then spun into yarn in the Woollen Mill. Demonstrations are carried out after the Sheep Show so it all ties in together nicely.

Organic Farm Tour

Separate to the Sheep Show is the Organic Farm Tour through various areas of this large farm. Don't worry, you won't have to walk. An all-weather vehicle that holds a lot of people is used to transport everyone around.

On this tour the organic orchards feature kiwifruit, feijoa (love those) apple and olive trees etc.

Rotorua Agrodome Bull
Courtesy © Macronix

Many children these days wouldn't know what REAL fresh fruit smells and tastes like, let alone being able to identify the trees they grow on, so it's good they can get the chance to here.

They (and you) will also by able to try fresh Kiwifruit juice, wine and honey at the Organic Education Center.

The Organic Farm Tour is not just about the orchards though, everyone gets the opportunity to mix with the different animals.

There are horses, cattle, emus and ostriches, llamas and alpacas, you name it they got it. Feeding and petting is highly encouraged.

Food & Drink

You can roll up to the trough for your vittles at the old Station House Cafe… just joking about the trough and vittles. Must be the farm air getting to me.

The Station House Cafe is open 7 days a week from 9am to 4pm offering 'great food and coffee'. You can eat outside and enjoy all that marvellous country air.

There is also Banquet and A-la-Carte dining for groups.

Lambs at Rotorua AgrodomeLambs grazing

Getting There

The Rotorua Agrodome can be found on SH5 (the road from/to Auckland which you will see on the following google map.

Go into the larger view and the road directions are displayed for getting there from Rotorua.

If you haven't got a vehicle both the Cityride Rotorua and Rotorua CitySights bus services stop here.

View Rotorua Agrodome in a larger map

Parking & Toilets

There is heaps of parking at the Agrodome and I wouldn't think you would have to worry too much about thieves here.

It's probably because the complex is in a rural setting off the road a ways. Thieves would stand out a mile.

Toilet facilities are available on-site.

Hours & Prices

The Rotorua Agrodome is open 7 days a week, 8.30am - 5.00pm

Sheep Show 1hr - 9.30am, 11.00am, 2.30pm

Organic Farm Tour 1hr - 10.40am, 12.10pm, 1.30pm, 3.40pm

Reserve tickets now ➾

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