Totara Estate

New Zealand is said to be founded on the sheep's back, and Totara Estate is central to this history. Situated south of Oamaru, the historic farm (originally 15,000 acres), was the birthplace of New Zealand's billion dollar frozen meat industry.


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Take a tour of this heritage site and hear about the big idea that launched new Zealand farming onto the world stage and changed its fortune forever. The restored farm buildings are a tribute to early pioneers and entrepreneurs who helped shape this country. Explore the variety of stone farm buildings, including stables, a cookhouse and slaughter shed. Meet and feed our heritage sheep 'with attitude', and back in the cookhouse enjoy a cup of billy tea and scones. Special tours with help from local swaggers, conclude with billy tea and scones and stories around the campfire. Booking required.
For a better view of the beautiful Waitaki farmland, take a walk up to the monument commemorating the work of Thomas Brydone of Totara Estate.

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Get directions

Physical address

Totara Estate, State Highway 1, 8km south of Oamaru, Oamaru, Waitaki, New Zealand.

Opening times

Business hours:
10am - 4pm daily, September-May; Closed except by prior arrangement, June-August. Closed Christmas Day and Good Friday.
Months of operation:
Jan, Feb, Mar, Apr, May, Sep, Oct, Nov, Dec

Facilities and Features

Proximity to town:
8km south of Oamaru

Pricing and Conditions

Adult $15.00
(16 year(s) and under)
Other charges:
Students $5, Heritage New Zealand members free (on production of valid memebrship card). Please be aware that surcharges may apply at times of special events.

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