Name: Ward and Sofie
Date Posted: 00:57, 25 01 2014
Message: Don’t be misled as your driver meets you, that you are about to embark on merely a simple farm tour.
A visit to this 6th generation family, descendants of the earliest French settlers on Banks Peninsula is thought provoking and entertaining whilst it educates you on how farming has developed from 1837 to the present day.
Murray Johns, who farms Paua Bay with his wife Sue, son Will and daughter in law Hanna is a raconteur who will hold you enthralled as he recounts the history of the farming and social lives of his forbears. You will learn how today farmers in this challenging part of the world, must diversify and develop to survive. Yet this will be no talk show. You will witness first hand, how to shear a sheep and learn of the daily struggles of those whose occupation it involves
You won’t need to be told of the legendary intelligence and worth of sheepdogs on this terrain. The sheepdogs at work are no performing show animals.The relationship in understanding the needs of farmer and flock as they muster the mob and discipline the stragglers, will leave you in awe
At the homestead, set amidst a beautiful cottage garden surrounded by native bush, you’ll enjoy Sue’s warm hospitality while devouring her delicious scones smothered with jam and cream as you gaze at the coastline and wonder how you will ever leave this idyll to return to Akaroa and beyond.
thanks again for this wonderful experience!
Ward & Sofie
Name: Amelie and Stephane
Date Posted: 10:10, 08 01 2014
Message: What a unique experience! We loved every minute of it! We consider our visit with Akaroa Farmtours as one of the highlights of our New Zealand trip. We would recommend this sheep shearing experience to anyone and everyone. Thank you to Murray, Sue, the entire family and team!
Name: Robyn and Peter
Date Posted: 21:23, 05 01 2014
Message: We enjoyed the tour of the farm very much. Loved the dogs and shearing demonstration. So interesting to learn the history of the farm and getting to know the family. Just loved the Devonshire tea. This was one of the highlights of our tour with the Dawn Princess. Thanks so much Murray and family. Sincerely, Robyn and Peter. Melbourne.
Date Posted: 08:49, 01 01 2014
Message: I visited here a couple weeks ago with my wife and two children. WE LOVED IT!!!! It was our favorite tour that we took on the Princess Cruise that we were on. My wife wants to go back in a couple years to stay at the B&B. After getting to know the family better that might just be a reality.
Thanks Murray and Sue!!!
Name: Dieter and Gisela
Date Posted: 16:45, 19 02 2013
Message: We have been we the cruise ship on the 31/12/2012 in Akaroa.
The tour to Murray and Sue shep farm was a wonderful experience. They are the perfect hosts. The tour was ver intersting and informative. Murry told us so much of his life and how he and his family started with the shep farm.
It was a amazing afternoon and when we come again to NZ we will stay longer with this kind family in his nice B&B.
Thank you Murray and Sue for this wonderful trip
Date Posted: 11:42, 27 01 2013
Message: Murray and Sue you are the perfect hosts - what a wonderful tour this was, so informative and exciting It was one of the best tours me and my husband took during our Holland American Cruise. Thank you for the the amazing experience
Name: Lynn Austin & Katherine Klein
Date Posted: 19:11, 26 01 2013
Message: The day we toured your farm was pouring rain and very windy. Nonetheless, it was the very best tour we experienced from the Seabourn Odyssey. We especially liked Murray's story in the sheep shed, photo ops with the sheep, and the fastest sheep shearing by your daughter-in-law that I've ever seen. The visit to Sue's kitchen was wonderful, with the scones and tea. We were sorry to miss the dogs working with the sheep because of the weather. However, it was still the best tour in all of New Zealand.
Name: Krista Kuebler & Mike Richardson
Date Posted: 19:00, 19 01 2013
Message: Murray and Sue - We loved your farm and the visit will be one we remember for a long time! Your story of the history of the farm was one of our favorite parts. Working with the dogs and sheep was a close second. Thank you for being so gracious and warm-hearted. Getting an opportunity to shear the sheep and watch you move them in the paddocks increased my respect tenfold for your skill and ability as a farmer. Your farm tour stands out as a wonderful highlight on my visit to this beautiful country and will be an experience never forgotten.
Name: Lucille & Frank Garrett
Date Posted: 11:45, 12 01 2013
Message: We visited your farm Dec.31,while on a Celebrity Cruise. It was the best tour of our trip. The talk, sheep, sheep dogs, and picturesque setting all made for a lovely day, topped off with scones and coffee for me. Tea was also available. Not to mention the sheep picture and the shearing. You have a slice of heaven and your statement, "You will come as a stranger and leave as a friend." is true.
Name: Kelley & Diane Arnold
Country: United States
Date Posted: 13:46, 08 12 2012
Message: We visited the farm off the Holland America Cruise Shipp Oosterdam. It was the highlight of a wonderful trip in both Australia and New Zealand. Murray and Sue are the perfect host and hostess. The knowledge they imparted about sheep farming in general, and their own wonderful five-generation story was memorable beyond measure. Never have we been on a shore excursion where we felt so completely immersed in what we were seeing and doing. The beauty of their property, the warmth of their presentation and hospitality, the sheep shearing and the dogs roundup of the sheep was absolutely incredible. Could not recommend this tour more highly.
Name: elizabeth jobes
Date Posted: 23:39, 30 01 2012
Message: hello sue and murray,
our Princess tour of your lovely farm, home....well all of the country side was so very special. the scones and tea ended a perfect tour. "blue" and buddies were fabulous and the hugging of a wonderful wooly sheep made the day perfectly complete.
thank you so much for your hard work in keeping your home alive.
Name: Gene Gilsdorf
Date Posted: 10:58, 28 01 2012
Message: Hello "friends"
We returned home safely from our trip. One of the highlights was the tour of your farm. Being from Nebraska I have been on many farms but your was a real treat. I was especially touched by the family history. Seems all long term ranches have moving histories of success, failure and endurance. Your hospitality is top notch and your ranch is beautiful. I have been having fun learning to use the whistle. I am finally catching on but have to learn not to slobber all over myself. Thank you for the wonderful experience. Two of our children may be heading your way soon.
Name: Henry Feldman Jr.
Date Posted: 18:23, 27 01 2012
Message: We toured here as port of a trip via National Geographic/Linblad during January, 2012. My expectations weren't high given I am from Illinois and have seen many farms. Boy, was I wrong. This farm was a sight to behold. Fascinating story of 7 generations of a family that currently operates this Edenish-acreage on rolling hills. The owner, Murray Johns is a superb raconteur, his children are working sheep farmers,beautiful English garden. GO SEE IT!!!!
Date Posted: 22:23, 17 01 2012
Message: Very good website. We went to NZ in 1997, and certainly missed your place. We wish we can visit you in the future.
Name: XU Tao
Date Posted: 02:23, 06 12 2011
Message: Murray and Sue are really nice people. We did enjoy the farm tour and the history Murray gave regarding his family history and the progress of what happened at akaroa.
Hope Murray's son and daughter-in-law are enjoying their farm life so they bring more fun to more visitors from around the world.
Name: Timmy Bueno
Country: USA, Hawaii
Date Posted: 23:17, 30 03 2011
Message: Thanks Murray and Sue for showing us a Great time at your Farm. We learned a lot of interesting history about New Zealand and the Sheep Farming industry. All 5 of us from Hawaii, including my 7yr old son enjoyed the sheep shearing and the awesome dog work! Those are some Amazing Sheep dogs you guys have! We always appreciate great dog work as we have dogs of our own that we train. We hope to see you guys next year when we visit New Zealand again.
Thanks again for treating us like Family.
Name: michelle stuart
Country: new york usa
Date Posted: 16:20, 30 07 2008
Message: it has been several years since I visited the farm, in hindsite it was the best experience that I had in over several weeks of travel in both islands. The dog, the sheep, the land, the view and the the people with their hard work and genuine hospitality keeps returning to my memory..I wanted to stay...and that is the best feeling that one can have.
cheers and I hope that all is well and hasn't changed too much.
Name: Armin & Janelle Brahm
Country: Louisiana, USA
Date Posted: 15:56, 07 02 2008
Message: To Murray & Sue:
Our day with you was the high point of our 21 day trip to Australia and New Zealand. Your passion for the land and the life you have made there is so inspiring. We wish you and your family the very best. Thank you for allowing us to share a part of your day with you. We truly felt like we "left as friends". Sue, you are a lovely lady and have made your home into a showplace of peace, tranquility and beauty.
Thank you for following up on my e-mail and helping us get out to Akaroa with Linda. I certainly would have hated to miss this delightful day. Armin really enjoyed visiting with you. When we tell our friends about the wonderful day we had at Paua Farms he always includes the fact that he met someone from an area near where he grew up.
Best Wishes, Janelle & Armin
Name: Alan & Mel Patmore
Country: Bristol, UK
Date Posted: 04:46, 30 12 2007
Message: We visited the farm on 29 Dec 07 and had a great time! Thank you, Murray, for sharing your knowledge and family history with us. As "city-folk", it was a real eye-opener to the life of country farmers. All topped off with beautiful scenery, lovely dogs and yummy scones! We will definitely recommend this tour to everyone visiting New Zealand!
Many thanks, Alan & Mel Patmore
Name: Mike & Deborah
Country: Kentucky, USA
Date Posted: 18:16, 04 03 2007
Message: Our time was brief with you in February 2007, as our agent had booked us on the cruise in Akaroa. However brief, no matter the constant drizzle, we count our visit as one of the highlights of our stay in NZ. Murray, if you weren't a farmer, you'd be a poet or writer. (Perhpas you are that too!)So enjoyed the history and stories. Thanks for sharing your lives with us. Sue, you're home and gardens are as lovely as you. Thanks for your warm hospitality. Hope we can return one day for a longer stay!
Name: Patrick & Petra
Date Posted: 08:28, 09 02 2007
Message: It was such a great time.
One of our highlight in New Zealand
We will recommend it.
Thank you again
Best Regards from switzerland
Name: Bev Collins
Date Posted: 18:41, 03 02 2007
Message: We had a delightful day visiting Paua Bay farm. Murray and Sue Johns are 5th generation Akaroa farmers running a sheep/cattle/deer operation on the coast east of Akaroa. They picked us up at the Akaroa Info Centre and shared their entire afternoon with us. Surely they did the usual sheep-shearing-demonstration-event, but in addition they were bright and warm and kind and we all finished the afternoon around their garden table over tea and scones with laughter and lively conversation. Highest recommendation for the experience.
Country: Hannover, Germany
Date Posted: 02:49, 17 01 2007
Message: Name: Gwen
Sent: Friday December 23 2005 11:02:04 PM
Sue, Murray, just found the "new" website! It´s really nice!
Looking through it brings back to my mind all the memories
of my stay with you! It was such a great time! To everybody
reading this: Don´t miss Paua Bay and the tour! And also
don´t miss staying a night or two on the farm! Lot´s of Love
from Gwen, the wwoofer
Name: Jim & Heidi
Country: Seattle, USA
Date Posted: 02:47, 17 01 2007
Message: Name: Jim Wilkerson
Sent: Wednesday January 4 2006 9:52:42 PM
Dear Sue and Murray - thank you so much for the wonderful
tour of your farm. We both enjoyed it thoroughly and have
highly recommended it to others in our group. Many thanks
to Bernd as well for the exciting drive over from Akaroa.
A great tour, not to be missed!
Thank you again - Best Regards
Jim and Heidi Wilkerson
Name: Jeremy Lezin
Date Posted: 02:46, 17 01 2007
Message: Name: Jeremy Lezin
City: Santa Cruz
Sent: Wednesday February 8 2006 6:29:56 AM
Wendy and I took the Akaroa farm tour yesterday after two
weeks of touring New Zealand. I must say that the tour
ranked right up there with the best things that we've don
on this trip. Murray is a wonderful host and makes
everyone on this inimate tour feel, smell and experience
life on a rural sheep farm. Highpoints for me? Shearing
the sheep, learning about Murray's ancestors, watching the
sheep dog race up a vertical hill and corral a flock of
sheep in minutes . . . all capped off with hot scones and
jam with tea in the farmer's home. Also blessedly missing
were the accoutrement of normal tours: buses, translations,
and posed situations. This is the real thing and I HIGHLY
recommend it to anyone coming to the Akaroa area. And if
it isn't in your plans . . . make it so! Jeremy & Wendy
Name: Nicola & Ron
Country: London, UK
Date Posted: 02:44, 17 01 2007
Message: Name: Nicola Ranson
Sent: Thursday February 9 2006 5:35:42 PM
The sheep tour was the best afternoon we spent on our New
What a divine place -- with one of the best views in New
Sue and Murray made us completely welcome and utterly at
home - it was very difficult to leave!
All the best
Nicola and Ron
Date Posted: 02:42, 17 01 2007
Message: Name: Jaspert
Sent: Sunday February 12 2006 8:55:42 AM
Last January we visited the farm and enjoyed it very much.
The history of the farm and the farmers, working with the
sheep, the rams from Texel, sheep shearing, the house and
the garden: perfect.
specially the jacuzzi in the garden, great.
Name: Jerry & Pam
Country: Nebraska, USA
Date Posted: 02:40, 17 01 2007
Message: Name: Jerry & Pam Gardner
Sent: Saturday March 11 2006 1:31:11 AM
Greetings from our Nebraska ranch. I was your champion
drafter on Feb 05.06, thanks for the 2 bottles of beer.
Our tour with you folks was the highlite of our NZ trip,
as I related very well to your farm environment.
We have been drafting Angus cattle and branding the baby
calves the past few weeks.
We really liked New Zealand.
Country: Plymouth, UK
Date Posted: 02:39, 17 01 2007
Message: Name: Louisa
Sent: Thursday June 22 2006 5:30:36 PM
Love the new website. Can't help reminiscing about the
wonderful time we had when we stayed with you in June 05 -
where has the time gone? Hope to come and see you again
one day, if you ever get to the UK look us up!
Louisa and Laurence xx
Name: D. Bruins
Date Posted: 02:37, 17 01 2007
Message: Name: D. Bruins
Sent: Friday December 1 2006 12:04:44 AM
One of the best tours in New Zealand and thanks for your
And yes we have shorn cows in the past.
Name: Becky & Mike
Date Posted: 02:34, 17 01 2007
Message: Name: Becky & Mike Rice
Sent: Friday December 1 2006 12:11:35 AM
Thouroughly enjoyable tour, very personal and interactive.
Lived up to all expectations and more.
As a suggestion - maybe visitors could have a go at using
the whistle to control the dogs. Is that possible?
Name: Sean & Patricia
Country: Vienna, VA, USA
Date Posted: 02:32, 17 01 2007
Message: Name: Sean Coeey & Patricia Miranda
City: Vienna, VA
Sent: Friday December 1 2006 12:14:21 AM
We had a wonderful time and learned a lot and we bet lots
of folks passing through Christchurch and Akaroa would be
Thank you very much
Name: Alisa Johnstone
Date Posted: 02:27, 17 01 2007
Message: Name: Alisa Johnstone
City: Tranent, East Lothian
Sent: Friday December 1 2006 12:18:26 AM
Great day, lots of fun.
Will never forget it, thank you
Country: New Zealand
Date Posted: 02:22, 17 01 2007
Message: Name: Anthony
Country: New Zealand
Sent: Friday December 1 2006 12:20:19 AM
Great tour to us.
Please have even more chances for hand-on activities.
Name: Bob McMeeking
Country: New Zealand
Date Posted: 23:32, 16 01 2007
Message: Bob McMeeking
Country: New Zealand
Sent: Wednesday December 13 2006 5:39:54 AM
Yours is a first class presentation, authentic in every
way. It meets all the expectations from visitors, do not
Murrays potted history of his family involvement, Sue's
scones and Bernd's friendly welcoming, all very well
Top marks, thank you
Copy from Dec. 13, 2006
Name: Ken Mayer
Country: City: Madison, Wisconain
Date Posted: 06:51, 16 01 2007
Message: Murrey and Sue: we took the wonderful tour today, and I
managed to misplace the questionnaire. We wanted to let
you know that w thoroughly enjoyed our time with you, and
found the information and demonstrations fascinating. We
have some exposure to farm culture in Wisconsin, where
there are many similarities: farmers need a strong bank,
strong desire to farm, and a love of the land. It was
beautiful to see everything operating.
If you would like us to fill out the form, can you email a
copy to firstname.lastname@example.org?
Best: Ken Mayer
copy from Sunday December 17 2006
Name: Sharon Burns
Date Posted: 06:47, 16 01 2007
Message: I was one of the highlights of my trip to New Zealand.
Beautiful farm, great scenery.
Wonderful to see the dogs working
copy from Wednesday December 27 2006 10:25:01 PM
Name: Janet McLaughlin
Date Posted: 04:44, 16 01 2007
Message: Extremely enjoyable tour, great personal touch.
We will tell everyone back home to visit you when they come to NZ.
Name: Rebecca, Julia & Kate
Date Posted: 17:19, 17 12 2006
Message: Our Visit to Paua Bay was a wonderful experience. The
action with your dogs and sheep was fascinating and we
enjoyed every moment of our trip. Murray & Sue are
wonderful people, they really make you feel welcome.