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Top Reasons to Visit Churchill Island Heritage Farm

Home > Melbourne > Outdoor | Historic Houses | Farms | Family | Escape the City
by Postcards from Shayne (subscribe)
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Published November 30th 2015
Farm animals, demonstrations, history & serenity abound
One of the highlights of our recent trip to Phillip Island was an enjoyable afternoon spent at Churchill Island Heritage Farm. Not only is this a spectacularly scenic and tranquil location, it also has great historical significance for Victoria.

As you would expect Churchill Island Heritage Farm features heritage buildings, equipment and displays, but that is not all. The demonstrations and activities on offer are informative and fun and well worth your time.

Daily demonstrations and activities include how to milk a cow and shear a sheep, how to crack a whip and a working dog demonstration. There are also wagon rides during school and public holidays.

Churchill Island Heritage Farm
You can learn how to crack a whip, shear sheep and watch a working dog demo on Churchill Island

We enjoyed watching the working dog and sheep shearing demonstrations. For the schedule of daily farming activities please click here.

For young children and animals lovers there are many farmyard animals to enjoy such as a farmyard nursery with guinea pigs, bunnies and lambs. Plus there are chooks and ducks wandering the grounds, as well as a handsome peacock and some Clydesdale horses. You will also find wallabies, cattle and sheep on the island.

Churchill Island Heritage Farm
Say hello to these little friends

The scenic location and tranquillity of the island was another highlight for us. There are spectacular views of Western Port and lovely heritage gardens to explore.

Churchill Island Heritage Farm
Enjoy the serenity and the views

The island is historically important as the location of Victoria's first garden. It was in 1801 that the Lady Nelson, the first known vessel to travel the southern coastline, made three visits to the Western Port area. It was during one of these visits, in March 1801, that the first garden was planted and the island named after the man who had given the seeds for the journey.

The island has been farmed continuously since the 1850s and used as holiday residences for some notable Melbourne families. The historical buildings are listed by the National Trust and are on the National Estate and Victorian Heritage Register.

Churchill Island Heritage Farm
Amess House

Amess House was built by Samuel Amess in 1872 as a beach holiday residence. Samuel Amess was a stonemason and building contractor who built many Melbourne landmarks and was also mayor of Melbourne from 1869 - 1870. The Amess family enjoyed this house for 57 years and it has now been restored to display its original decorative scheme of the 1870s, including original wallpapers . There is period furniture on loan from the National Trust of Australia collection so you can see what it may have looked like during this time.

Churchill Island Heritage Farm
Some of the rooms inside Amess House

The gardens of Amess House include a giant Norfolk Island Pine which was planted in 1872, original camellias and orchard trees such as mulberry and olive trees

Also on display are cottages owned by the Rogers family who were pioneer farmers. Dating from 1862 they are amongst the oldest buildings in the region and reflect the living standards of that time.

Churchill Island Heritage Farm
Rogers Cottages

Churchill Island Heritage Farm
Explore the heritage farm buildings & machinery

There is a café on the grounds for refreshments as well as a Visitor Centre and gift shop.

Churchill Island Heritage Farm is open daily from 10am - 5pm. Tickets are available to purchase individually or as part of the Phillip Island Nature Parks 3 Park Pass. For more information click here.

Phillip Island is just 90 minutes south east of Melbourne. Churchill Island Heritage Farm is managed by Phillip Island Nature Parks, a not for profit conservation organisation.
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Why? Farming demonstrations, farm animals, scenic location & history
When: Daily
Phone: 03 5956 7214
Where: 246 Samuel Amess Drive, Churchill Island, Newhaven 3925
Cost: Varies
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