The Agrodome can be defined as an amusement park mixing adrenaline and family attractions.
There is no entrance ticket, you just pay for the attractions you try.
We stopped in the Agrodome to experience zorbing, but my husband also tried the Freefall Xtreme (have a look at the Agrodome website for more info) and was very satisfied (despite some scratches!).
We didn't stop at the family attractions (sheep show &Co.), they looked quite boring.
In our opinion, attractions are too much expensive, even if you can buy packages to save some money.
What a great day we had at the Agrodome! We arrived in time for their 9.30am World Famous Sheep Show and followed that with the Organic Working Farm Tour before lunch.
The Sheep Show is a fun experience. You get to see a sheep shearing demonstration, learn about and see 19 different breeds of sheep, and audience participation features heavily! I volunteered to hand milk a Jersey cow on stage (I have my Certificate of Udderance to prove it) and working dogs join in the show. Lots of fun and not to be missed.
Following on from the Sheep Show you have the option of joining the Organic Farm Tour - you can book tickets for both as part of a 'combo deal' which works out cheaper. A trailer takes you around the farm (a working farm) to see more sheep, cattle, deer, llamas, alpacas, ostriches and emus. Regular stops are made to hand feed the animals as well as honey tastings, kwi-fruit wine tastings and a tour through the kiwi fruit and apple orchards and the olive grove.
We then enjoyed lunch and a browse round the gift shops and chocolate shop. A really great day out.
They have a nice show of the sheep shaving process. You will also learn about sheep and wool. My favorite sheep is the one in the middle of the second row - the fattest one (see picture). LOL.
After the show, you can take a tractor ride to go around the farm and even enjoy feeding the animals there.
This is me with Ken feeding the sheep. The sheep were quite excited to see us and practically ran and surrounded me, greedily eating the pellets I had in my hand.
Ken has a sheep dog named Ben. Haha....but Ben turned out to be a quiet, obedient and not friendly dog.
Ken was very friendly and nice. In fact, we were the only ones at the farm tour on that day and therefore got privileged personalised service.
He also happens to be over 80 years old and is very fit. I am sure far fitter than me. And has been a farmer all his life.
This is an emu bird and an alpaca which we saw as we toured the farm.
The alpaca is a native animal from South America and a cousin to the llama. It is also an irascable creature which does not like to be touched and will spit if annoyed.
Ken explained to us that the farm was interested in raising emus for their meat and alpacas for their fur. So far they have a few emus (about 10) and 2 alpacas which they intend to breed.
These 2 were very curious about us or the camera. We did feed it a few times as they are tame enough to be fed but certainly Ken warned us against touching or petting especially on their heads. Good advice, I don't want to be pecked or spit at.
I can't remember the presenter's name but he was quite a funny guy.
He is also a trained farmhand and sheeps-shearer and had trained to be one for almost 3 years before he was considered good enough.
He demonstrated his skills and it was quite good. The sheep also seemed to be hypnotised or comatose when he held it.....I don't know why. It allowed him to play with its legs, snout etc and it was kinda funny.
The Agrodome turned out to be a worthwhile half-day trip for us and we got to see a lot of farm animals and see a working farm.
Yes, despite its rather lucrative tourism function, the Agrodome is also a working farm. It has many animals and not just sheep. We saw ostriches, deers, alpacas, cows, ducks etc and also kiwifruit trees, pines and grapevines at the Agrodome.
But right now, here is a display of the various kinds of sheep in NZ. Apparently there are about 30 or so varieties and are used depending on their wool or meat.
As you can see, the Merino sheep standing on top is the ultimate prize. It can cost up to a tens thousands of dollars for a prized Merino sheep. When we checked out the gift stores, we saw a Merino coat worth about $1100NZ.
The Agrodome is an excellent opportunity for visitors to New Zealand to learn more about New Zealand farming, in particular about our sheep. As you enter the large tin shed you'll see all of the sheep lined up along the side. I will never forget the face of my American friend when one of them moved and he realised they were real!!!
The shows run three times a day at 9.30, 11 and 2.30. The cost is a minimum of $18 per adult.
Nearby there are also Bungy and Zorb activities!
The first show of sheep dogs is carried out inside, the dogs are running over the top of the sheep, and actually settle down on their back!
Also outside a dog demonstration, as well as baby sheep being fed and ducks being herded. Some of the sheep are amazing - long haired readlocks!
There is also a life size model of a moa - I never knew it was that big!
A sheep show would not be complete without a sheep sheering demonstration. This one is done with an electric sheerer, which is the modern and efficient way of doing it. I am amazed at how quickly they can remove a whole body coat from a sheep. If they do this demonstration every day, I wonder how many sheep they have?
After the various sheep, sheep sheering and the sheerdogs, they bring in a Jersey cow and ask for volunteers to milk it. I am chosen - it is a lot more difficult than you think. My father (an ex-farmer) believes thay have deliberately fully milked the cow so that there is nothing left. Thanks, dad, but I think it is just me who is not very good at it.
That is a the first of many "firsts" today.
At first, I was kind of nervous being in that big room, full of the busloads of tourists who'd never seen farm animals before. I was also a bit nervous about the enthusiasm of the presenters.
But wait! The enthusiasm is catchy! The champion ram studs are entertaining! The information is useful (you might have most all your sheep questions answered in the show!)
It was one of the highlights of my 2004 trip to NZ. I'd been to "dog and pony" shows before, and I thought I'd seen it all before.
In the end, I found the enthusiasm, the information, and the folks/animals endearing.
The wee cafe in the car park isn't half bad, either!
Quite popular with tourists is the agrodome.
It can be quite funny the way the show is done. Not cheap, but fun nonetheless.
The show displays all 19 breeds of sheep, and they are all characters in their own right. The compere makes it - he is a real showman.
A very exciting day of "firsts" started off at the Agrodome, where we have a show of "performing" sheep.