The Best Family-Friendly Farmstays near to Sydney

A family visit to a NSW farmstay is a must-do, working well for little children and for older kids, and also for us parents.

Everyone loves farm animals and everyone needs a breath of country air, so grab a cup of tea and let’s look at some of the best family farm stays near to Sydney.


Meeting the animals at Calmsley Hill City farm

Calmsley Hill City Farm

Calmsley Hill City Farm is best known as a place for day trips. It’s the closest farm experience to central Sydney, being just a 45 – 50 minute drive away. Did you know that you can also camp there? Check the website for all the info.

Read a full description of Calmsley Hill City Farm here.

The huge watertank at Calmsley Hill City Farm
 

Feeding the goats at Mowbray Park Farmstay

Mowbray Park Farmstay, Picton

Just an 80-90 minute drive from central Sydney, Mowbray Park Farmstay is the closest true farm stay to Sydney, and one of New South Wales’ longest-running. Owned and operated by the same family since the early 1980s, Mowbray Park has expanded from the original working farm into a large and busy farm stay experience.

There are several different lodges available to stay in, some very large and some smaller, many of them are interesting historic buildings. You can check them out on the website but I do also advise giving Mowbray park a call to chat through what would work best for your family.

An antique photo of myself leading my eldest son on a pony ride at Mowbray Park, many years ago.

There is both self-catering and fully catered accommodation, with most farm activities included in the price of each.

Daily activities can include: feeding all the farm animals, learn to milk a cow, bottle feeding calves and lambs at certain times of year, tractor rides , pony rides, whip cracking, feasting on damper and billy tea. On the property you can also try canoeing, tennis, archery, swimming, fishing, walking and mountain biking.

You can pay extra to have riding lessons (for kids aged eight years and above).

NB It is also possible to visit Mowbray Park on a day visit.

Address: 745 Barkers Lodge Road, Picton NSW 2571

Phone: 02 4680 9243

Mowbray park website is here.

Find other Fun Things To Do In Picton With Kids here.

Learning to milk a cow at Mowbray Park
 

Paddocks and horses at Eden Farm Escape

Eden Farm Escape, Bilpin

Hello Sydney Kids reader Sonja tell us that Eden Farm Escape at Bilpin is great. Just a one and a half hour drive from Sydney CBD, and much closer to anyone further west, this Bilpin farm stay makes for a very easy weekend or midweek escape.

Eden Farm Escape is part of Eden Equine, a 90 acre working equine farm. The five luxury cottages on the property sleep from 2 – 8 people. Children and pets are very welcome. If two families share a cottage this can be a well-priced escape from the city.

On the property you will meet donkeys, alpacas, cows, pigs, sheep and goats. There are also horses and ponies, trail rides and pony rides do cost extra. There are plenty of other activities on the property, walking and cycling trails, plus a dam to cool off and swim in. There’s a firepit and BBQs, too.

Nearby you can explore Mt Tomah Botanic gardens and enjoy fruit picking at one of the many orchards around Bilpin.

Address: 13 Hanlons Road South, Bilpin NSW 2758

Phone: 0411 477 877

Eden Farm website, click here

Russell the pig enjoying a bath at Eden Farm Escape .
 


Feeding the chooks and collecting eggs at Barcoos Farmstay

Barcoos Farmstay, Bathurst

Just a 10-minute drive from the centre of Bathurst, and around 3 – 3.5 hours west of Sydney, Barcoos Farmstay has well-equipped, spacious accommodation on offer and a great variety of farm animals to meet and activities to enjoy.

Accommodation includes a historic farmhouse which can sleep 10 people in five rooms and two two-bedroom units, each has their own outdoor seating area with BBQs. There are also powered and unpowered sites for caravans and camping.

Farm activities start in the morning with feeding the chooks, Georgia pig, cows, horses, donkey, sheep and alpacas. The afternoon feeding is also a must-do. Then there are pony rides, trips in the sulky pulled by Coco the Shetland pony, plenty of space to play and even a proper playground and don’t forget to collect the eggs.

Barcoos Farmstay can also be visited on a day tour, check the website for all the info you need. Owner Elaine has been running Barcoos for over 14 years and she will make sure that all ages and stages are looked after well. By the way, Barcoo was the name of Elaine’s first Clydesdale horse.

Elaine aims to provide farm stays for people of all abilities, so if you have any additional needs, please do give her a ring and chat things through.

I visited Barcoos just for a day tour but would love to return to stay one day and to wake up surrounded by all the fields and so many lovely farm animals.

Address: 1080 Trunkey Road, Perthville (via Bathurst) NSW 2795

Phone: 0429 337 439

Barcoos Farmstay website is here

Barcoos has good accommodation, and plenty of space to play
You need to be supervised when you learn how to feed the skittish alpacas
But in no time they will be eating out of your hand, literally

Hello Sydney Kids reader Shannon told us this: ‘Barcoos is the BEST Farmstay! We are repeat guests and love visiting. Amazing hosts and incredible hands on experiences for the kids. We’ve stayed in their accommodation and in our van. Truly beautiful area with non-stop farm activities for all of the family. Highly recommend!’

You can take the dogs for a pony ride!
And meet Prudence the Clydesdale
Many farm stays have their own playgrounds too, like this one at Barcoos
 

Feeding the ponies at Mudgee Getaway Cottages

Mudgee Getaway Cottages

Whilst strictly not a typical farmstay this lovely property within the town of Mudgee does count as one as there are so many lovely animals to meet and pet and feed.

We have a full article about Mudgee and this adorable accommodation option, click through here to read about Mudgee With Kids.

Joining in the chook feeding at Mudgee Getaway Cottages
 

Mummy and baby goats at Kookaburra Farmstay

Kookaburra Farmstay, Port Stephens

Drive two and a half hours north of the Sydney CBD towards Port Stephens and on the Tomaree Peninsula you will find the very family-friendly Kookaburra Farmstay. Newcastle is only 30 minutes away and Nelson Bay is just a 15-minute drive away.

Some Sydney neighbours of ours have been telling us about this family-run farm for years but I’m sad to say that we have not visited yet ourselves. But our friends have enjoyed the daily animal feeding and egg collecting, not to mention milking the cows.

Accommodation is self-catering and includes three-bedroom cottages which can sleep up to nine guests, great for two families. There are also one-bedroom cabins which have a bunk bed and trundle in the living/dining area and can sleep five.

Address: 564 March Road, Bobs farm Port Stephens, NSW 2316

Phone: 0448 254 591

Kookaburra Farmstay website, click here.

When in Port Stephens there are many more fun things to do with kids, click here for our list.

The firepit and wide open paddocks at Kookaburra Farmstay.
 

Here below are some other farm stays which we have heard good things about but have not stayed at ourselves. Hopefully as we ourselves or friends or Hello Sydney Kids readers visit these places, they can be described in more detail.

Chesleigh Homestead, Sofala

Enjoy horse riding and gold panning at this Central West rural retreat.

Address: 319 Hill End Road, Sofala NSW 2795

Phone: 02 63377077

Chesleigh Homestead website is here.

Madison’s Mountain Retreat, Kurrajong Heights

This is a farm stay with lots of alpacas to pet which is very close to Sydney; you can do bush walks, swim in the indoor pool, play tennis and more.

Address: 1880 Bells Line of Road, Kurrajong Heights NSW 2758

Phone: 02 4567 7398

Madison’s Mountain Retreat website is here.

Ocean & Earth Farmstay,

A large farmhouse on a property just north of Newcastle; swim in the dam, catch yabbies, bush walks and feed the farm animals.

Address: 560 Fords Road, Limeburners creek NSW 2324

Phone: 02 4994 9119

Ocean & Earth website, click here.

Back 2 Earth Farmstay, Berry

Join in the farm chores on this farm stay close to lovely Berry. You can also try workshops, enjoy vegan food, have massages or just enjoy the peace and quiet.

Address: Borrowdale Close, Berry NSW 2535

Phone: 0420 966 551

Back 2 Earth website is here.

Ba Mack Farmstay, Windeyer

Just a 25 minute drive south of Mudgee is this idyllic farm experience. After a hearty breakfast feed all the farm animals, then kids can join in at a supervised kids club if they’d like to. Pony rides are available too plus baking lessons in the farmstead kitchen. You can stay in a two-bedroom country cottage or a two-bedroom ‘Red Rattler’ train carriage.

Address: 1367 Windeyer Road, Windeyer NSW 2850

Phone: 02 6373 8312

Ba Mack Farmstay website is here.

Hello brown cow

Have you taken the kids to a farm stay in NSW somewhere? Can you tell us all about it in the comments. There is nothing like a personal recommendation!

Happy country travels.

 

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Posted on: September 21, 2020

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