New South Wales

Delightful farm stays in NSW for a taste of life in the slow lane

If city life is taking its toll, it might be time for a farm stay in New South Wales. Take a few days to unwind from everyday stresses and realign with nature amid rolling fields and curious animals.

Working farm stays are growing in popularity with city slickers seeking a slice of the good life–over a long weekend in the country, you’ll relax in unhurried rural surrounds and have the chance to get your hands dirty in a back-to-nature experience at your own pace.

Those with a penchant for camping will find country bliss at a rustic site teeming with adorable wildlife, while those requiring a few more home comforts can relax in a glamping hut or a cutesy cottage. Bird lovers will be in their element at a boutique farm stay where honeyeaters and woodswallows fill the air with their calls–there’s even a spot for foodies, with catered breakfast feasts made from homegrown produce. Farm stays in NSW come in all shapes and sizes, so cast your eyes over our pick of the crop and see which rural escape will bring you back to a simpler way of life.

Get your hands dirty at a NSW farm stay with a pottery workshop

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It’s the simple pleasures of earth and sky that will help you reset at Barkala Farm, a charming farm stay in New South Wales. This working estate in Coonabarabran hugs the edge of Pilliga Forest and provides comfortable guest accommodation for those seeking seclusion in the Aussie countryside.

Set up camp in nature’s embrace on the farm’s lush grounds, or opt for a little extra comfort and check into an adorable cottage. In the spacious Poet’s Cottage, you can kick back on soft furnishings under natural timber beams rich in home-away-from-city-home ambience.

To maximise your day, rise early and fix eggs how you like them in your well-equipped kitchen. Belly full, venture out past the lush orchard and exchange morning pleasantries with friendly goats! Your (human) hosts will happily guide you to the best bushwalking routes, so you can explore the local surrounds before the heat of the day hits. Return for a fuelling Ploughman’s Lunch at on-site Blue Wren Cafe, or just opt for a cooling scoop of deliciously smooth gelato.

How to spend a day:

Pottery workshop

The farm’s Pilliga Pottery studio is an ideal place to spend the afternoon and glean some tips from expert potters. You’ll have time to work on your skills, with free play and clay available all day.

Dive right in!

There’s also the refreshing swimming pool to tempt you in for an early evening dip before you return to your cottage to fire up the barbecue.

Dinner under the stars

Plate up your grilled fare, grab a chilled bottle of chardonnay from the fridge and settle down beneath the sparkling starlit sky—a Dark Sky Park, in fact—for a relaxed meal and some spectacular stargazing.

Barkala Farm

8.5 Excellent (85 reviews)
Excellent Cleanliness 8.9 / 10
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Crack out the binoculars for bird watching at this farm

Whistle along with sweet birdsong—or share a hearty laugh with the kookaburras—in the rural setting of the boutique farm stay Wildwood Guesthouse. Just five kilometres from Mudgee, this inviting retreat has only four guest bedrooms, each with private en-suite, and is nestled in the heart of a 150-acre property.

Wake up in your terracotta-hued room to the sound of sulphur-crested cockatoos and throw open your French doors to welcome the morning sun. You’ll breeze into the day with a complimentary breakfast banquet of fresh fruits with yoghurt and homemade muesli, or you can level up with smoked salmon and cream-topped scrambled eggs.

Bird lovers will be in their element here, as the lush grounds host a staggering variety of feathered friends. On your morning stroll around the property, keep your eyes peeled for honeyeaters, lorikeets, wrens and woodswallows enjoying the sun-soaked landscape.

How to spend a day:

Explore beyond the farm

Hire a bike and cycle the easy 30-minute route into nearby Mudgee.

Share a bottle (or two!)

Reward your efforts with a visit to Roth’s Wine Bar and Cellar, where you can browse more than 100 different wines from the region and purchase a bottle or two for some later indulgence.

Enjoy a romantic meal

If you’re not inclined to cook, the on-site chef will whip up a custom three-course dining experience, followed by steaming cups of coffee and decadent chocolates.

You’ll be ready to unwind after your sightseeing, so take a seat in the farm’s communal sunroom with Henry—the friendly Labrador—and pull out that novel you’ve been meaning to get stuck into. As the sky becomes star-speckled, return to your abode and crack open the wine you picked up in town for a nightcap.

Wildwood Guesthouse

8.9 Excellent (39 reviews)
Excellent Service 9.2 / 10
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Bounce with kangaroos at this farm stay in NSW

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If an authentic and interactive farm stay experience is what you’re after, set down your bags at Hillview Farmstay and immerse yourself in a haven of wildlife and natural beauty. Rise with the morning sun in your fully self-contained Deluxe Cottage and prepare a bacon-and-egg brekkie with the provisions supplied in your kitchen. After dining on your own veranda, you can head out to help feed the roving flock of chickens and give the resident alpacas their own morning meal.

When you’ve seen the sights and soaked up the country hospitality, make your way back to your farm stay’s breathtaking 1000 acres for some peace and quiet. The farm’s glimmering swimming pool is an ideal place to cool off in the heat of the day, though the tennis courts make a solid choice if you want to get your heart rate up.

As day turns to dusk, jump in a provided buggy and go say hello to the kangaroos who live on the edge of the property. As any farmer knows, a day communing with Mother Nature calls for a satiating dinner, so pick up some of the farm’s own beef skewers and lamb chops and fire up your cottage’s barbeque for a feast under the setting sun.

How to spend a day:

Wander to the archetypal Australian country town of Gundagai

A 22-minute drive away, in search of the Dog on the Tuckerbox statue from the much-loved Aussie song (unlike the musical version, this Dog is technically in nearby Snake Gully).

Museum and a meal

Take a tour of the Historical Museum, then grab a hearty lunch of chicken parmigiana at Niagara Cafe.

Hillview Farmstay

Top rated
9.1 Excellent (419 reviews)
Excellent Service 9.3 / 10
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Trade the city for clear-water kayaking

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You don’t need to travel hours from the city to wander orchards full of fruit trees and breathe that mountain-top air—the beguiling Bilpin Country Lodge is a farm stay near Sydney well worth the 90-minute trip. Leave in the mid-morning and you’ll be relaxing in tranquil rural accommodation amid 10 acres of gardens and farmland by noon.

If all that activity has you craving a little ‘me’ time, the farm’s outdoor spa is the ideal place to recover. Follow a soothing soak with a snack of apples hand-picked from the bountiful orchards, or take a slow stroll through ancient trees in the adjacent Wollemi National Park.

Wake each morning in your premium pillow-top bed, ready to cook up a morning spread of the farm’s own eggs and other fresh goodies supplied by your hosts. Evenings are as busy as you want them to be—you can poke into a nearby pub for a beer or two, or gather with other guests at the barbecue for a communal cooking session.

How to spend a day:

Take a drive to Katoomba

The Blue Mountains gateway town is less than an hour’s drive away, so don’t miss the opportunity to visit the mighty Three Sisters.

Ride the train

Take an adrenaline-fuelled ride into the valley the on the Scenic Railway, the steepest passenger railway in the world.

Coffee and kayaking, anyone?

Stop for specialty coffee at Cassiopeia Café before returning to the farm for an afternoon of kayaking beneath a clear blue sky.

Partake in that quintessential country experience around the outdoor fireplace, toasting marshmallows and telling yarns as the moon rises over the trees. To finish your evening of country bliss, cosy up in your comfortable space with a steaming mug of hot chocolate to send you off to sleep.

Bilpin Country Lodge

8.4 Very good (44 reviews)
Very good Cleanliness 8.4 / 10
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Do a little or a lot at this games-centred farm stay

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For a revitalising change from city life, head to the rolling Tweed Valley and pitch your tent at heartwarming Hosanna Farm Stay. If you prefer extra comfort with your country break, the farm’s huts and lake-view cabins let you bask in the calming country lifestyle while enjoying homely luxuries like ensuites and kitchen facilities.

You’ll stir to the sound of chirruping birds in your quaint little hut following a sound night’s sleep on provided bedding. Breakfast is a social affair in the well-equipped communal kitchen, so grab a frying pan and the kettle for scrambled eggs and a steaming mug of tea with new-found friends.

Should you prefer a little indoor competition, you’ll find ping pong and foosball tables in the games room. Ask the friendly staff for advice on day-trip opportunities if you want to wander further afield, though the farm’s wood-fired sauna might just tempt you to stay put and relax.

Any little ones in tow will delight in the chance to help give the farm’s chickens and guinea pigs their dinners. It’s always a comical sight watching the feathered beasts squawk and squabble overfeed as the sun sets. When your own stomachs start to growl, gather under the barbecue hut for local fare grilled up how you like it.

Hosanna Farm Stay

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