No visit to Southland would be complete without trying out one of the many agritourism experiences on offer.
Known for its warm ‘small community’ feel, rural Southland is famous for genuine hospitality, hearty meals, entrepreneurial spirit, and stunning natural landscapes. With experiences ranging from alpaca feeding, whip cracking, private mountain bike trails and horse treks to boutique produce and authentic farmstay experiences, there is a rich array of options available.
Southland’s abundance of agritourism is strongly linked to the importance of agriculture to the region. Well known for its farming prowess, the agriculture industry is the backbone of Southlands economy and a pivotal part of our identity. Several competitive advantages including climate, rainfall, good soils and long daylight hours, result in Southland having higher crop yields and pasture growth than in many other areas of New Zealand. Southland cows produce 10% higher milk solids per cow when compared with the national average and the town of Edendale is home to the largest raw milk powder plant in the world. The region produces 4.1 million lambs per annum which is around 17% of New Zealand's overall sheep production.
Agriculture is also key to Southland’s heritage, with the region home to the largest number of Century Farms in the country. These farms are those that have been in the same family continuously for over 100 years. For those interested in learning more about our agricultural history there are several museums throughout the region celebrating the machinery, the number 8 wire mentality, and pioneers of Southland whose backbreaking work formed the foundation of the success we enjoy today.
Whether you’re after a relaxed getaway in the countryside, the chance to experience rural life with our friendly farmers or want to find out more about the food we produce you’ll find it all within our vast range of agritourism experiences. Getting off the beaten track and connecting to our land will create memories that are guaranteed to last you a lifetime.