Annual shearing of Bungaree’s famous flock, 2-8 October 2018

Visitors doing a self guided tour of Bungaree will see the shearing team in action from Tuesday 2 – Friday 5 October, and on Monday 8 October, during the property’s 176th annual shearing.

The Woolshed at Bungaree is one of the oldest working woolsheds in Australia. Built in 1842, the woolshed at Bungaree has seen the “de-fleecing” of the property’s famous merino sheep for 176 years. In its heyday, up to 100,000 sheep were shorn in the shed, over a 6 week period by a team of 50 shearers. Today shearing of our 4500 merinos takes closer to 4 or 5 days, by a local shearing team managed by Neville Clarke.

Our visitors are always fascinated by shearing, with frequently asked questions being:

  • How much does a wool bale weigh? Wool bales usually weigh between 180 – 200kg.
  • How many fleeces in a wool bale? The number of fleeces that fit into a wool bale depends on the age and size of the sheep being shorn, but generally between 20-30 fleeces per bale.
  • How many sheep can a shearer shear in a day? It depends on the skill of the shearer and the size of the sheep. Generally each of our shearers will shear between 150-200 sheep per day.
  • How often do you shear? Only once a year, although we “crutch” some of the flock (shearing around the rear and tummy) as required at other times of the year.
  • What is the micron of your wool? It ranges with flock and age, but generally between 19 – 21 micron.

Visitors will find out all this and more when they do the self guided tour of the property and see shearing in action. The self guided tour also takes in the Station Store, Church, Homestead Garden and Stableyard, with a series of audiposts (including audio stories specially selected for children), signs and displays around the property.

The self guided tour is available between 10am and 4pm daily, at $15 per person and $7.50 per child for day visitors, with shearing dependent on weather.

Refreshments, including coffee and tea, Clare Valley wines and beers, local produce and cheese platters, can also be purchased from the Station Store “farm shop”.

For further information, please don’t hesitate to contact us. Bookings for the self guided tour and accommodation can also be made online.


Spring into School Holidays in the Clare Valley

The year has flown past and just like that, the Spring school holidays have arrived! Located less than 2 hours from Adelaide, with a range of attractions enjoyed by adults and children alike, the Clare Valley is the perfect place for a short escape or longer family holidays. With so much to see and do, here are our team’s tips to help you plan your holiday in the Clare Valley these school holidays, whether you are staying at Bungaree or just passing through:

  • Animal feeding at Bungaree (Bungaree residential guests only): We know it’s school holidays when there’s a line of kid’s bikes parked by the Store first thing in the morning and parents lining up for their caffeine hit before animal feeding. Animal feeding usually takes about an hour and as the mornings can still be fresh, do make sure the kids have a warm jumper. Please note that this is only available for our guests staying at Bungaree and not available for day visitors.
  • Self Guided Tour with Shearing at Bungaree: This year our annual shearing will coincide with the first week of the school holidays (pending any changes due to weather!). Our residential guests and day visitors doing a self guided tour of Bungaree can see our shearing team in action from Tuesday 2 – Friday 5 October. The self guided tour also takes in the Station Store, Church, Homestead Garden and Stableyard, with a series of audiposts (including audio stories specially selected for children), signs and displays around the property. Any students registered with the Children’s University can also earn credit for their program through completion of an activity booklet. The self guided tour is available between 10am and 4pm daily, at $15 per person and $7.50 per child for day visitors and is complimentary for our residential guests. Refreshments, including fresh coffee and pots of tea, Clare Valley wines and beers, local produce and cheese platters, can also be purchased from the Station Store.
  • Wineries and breweries: Spend some time sampling the local wines and beers at the Clare Valley’s cellar doors. Children will enjoy the Bush Garden at Paulett Wines, the lawn and outdoor games at Sevenhill Cellars and the great pizzas at Stonebridge Wines. If you stop at a few playgrounds along the way, such as the fantastic “playscape” near the Sevenhill Oval, and the kids won’t even notice that they are on an informal wine tasting tour! There’s also some great Clare with Fresh Air events on in October, pairing Clare Valley wines with Eyre Peninsula seafood.
  • Get lost in Mintaro Maze: the Maze is open daily during school holidays and also has a range of oversize board games to enjoy with your coffee.
  • Cycle the Riesling Trail: Bring or hire bikes to cycle all or part of the 32km Riesling Trail. It is a great way to burn off some of the children’s excess energy, and really make you feel like you’ve earnt that lazy lunch at a winery or bakery along the way. For those with younger children who still want to cover longer distances, tandem bikes, bike seats and carriages can also be hired locally.
  • Head along to a country event or show: The Royal Flying Doctors “Spring Art & Garden Fair” is being held at Melrose Park in Clare on Sunday 30 September. As well as a range of art, plants, food and wine, there will be the Flying Doctor flight simulator, jumping castle, face painting and model train rides for the kids (big and small!) to enjoy. The Clare Show also falls during the school holidays, on Saturday 13 October, and is a fantastic agricultural and horticultural show, with all the animals, sideshows and stalls that you find at a classic country show.
  • Walking trails at Bungaree (Bungaree residential guests only): The countryside is looking stunning at the moment, a tapestry of yellow paddocks of canola amongst the green crops, pastures and native vegetation. A scenic walking trail through some of our paddocks provides beautiful vistas with some great picnic spots along the way. Pop into the Station Store for a map and any additional local produce or snacks to add to your picnic.
  • Hike through Spring Gully Conservation Park: Choose between 1.2 – 2.6km loop walks through this pretty conservation park and keep your eyes open for flowering native orchids and wildlife.
  • Barbeques: This Spring weather is perfect for enjoying a BBQ in the sun. All of our cottages, and most accommodation in the region, are equipped with a BBQ. Pop into our Station Store to pick up some Bungaree lamb, or visit one of our great butchers in Clare to sample other local meats.
  • Bonfires (Bungaree residential guests only): With fireban season kicking in at the end of October, it is your last chance to toast marshmellows while enjoy your favourite local wines under the stars this Spring. By prior arrangement, small bonfires can be set up in drums by your accommodation (cost for wood/setup) – so pack the marshmellows and send your kids off searching for the perfect toasting sticks.

We hope this list has given you a few ideas for a fun family holiday in the Clare Valley this Spring.

If you haven’t booked your accommodation yet, please contact us or check availability of our accommodation online.

For more information of what to see and do in the Clare Valley, visit or pop into the Clare Valley Wine, Food and Tourism Centre.

Childrens University Australia, Adelaide

Bungaree accredited as Learning Destination for Children’s University Australia

Bungaree Station is now an accredited Learning Destination for the Children’s University Australia, an innovative program that encourages students to seek and engage in learning opportunities outside of the classroom.

Children cannot aspire to what they don’t know. The aim of Children’s University Australia (CUA) is to encourage children (aged between 7-14 years) to try new experiences outside of school-based learning activities and recognise their achievements through the award of formal certificates at a graduation ceremony held at the University of Adelaide. Schools register in the program and students obtain a membership “passport” in which they can record activities at accredited learning destinations. The learning destinations and activities are varied, enabling students to engage in a wider range of learning opportunities in different areas of interest.

The accredited activity at Bungaree Station is an extension of the self guided tour offered to day visitors, which offers insights into South Australia’s pioneering past and agricultural history through a series of signs, audioposts and displays around the station complex (including the Station Store, Homestead Gardens, Church, Stableyard and Woolshed). The accompanying “Jackaroo and Jillaroo” Activity Book needs to be completed by participating students to receive up to 2 hours of stamped credit in their Children’s University Passport.

The self guided tour and accompanying activity book is available every day between 10am – 4pm, except when the property is closed for private functions.

Given the importance of the Children’s University program in fostering educational aspirations and a love of learning, special discounts for the self guided tour are available for Children’s University Passport holders and their accompanying family:

Adult: $15.00, discounted to $12.75 per adult when accompanying a student with a Children’s University passport.
Child: $7.50, discounted to $5.50 per child with a Children’s University passport, or when accompanying a child with a Children’s University passport.

Please note: The self guided tour is complimentary for guests staying at Bungaree.

Visitors should come to the Station Office on arrival, where the information and map for the self guided tour can be obtained, as well as the Activity Book for Children’s University Passport holders.

For further information about Children’s University Australia, please visit their website at .



Image of sheep sales at Bungaree in 1920s

SA History Festival Event: Guided tour with Devonshire Tea, 12 May

A special guided tour of Bungaree Station will be just one of the many events held in May to celebrate our State’s rich heritage as part of South Australia’s History Festival.

As part of the History Festival, we will be conducting a special guided tour, with Devonshire Tea, on Saturday 12 May at 10:30am. Visitors will obtain a unique insight into Bungaree’s 175 year history while exploring the iconic village-like property, that was  established at a time when Australia rode “on the sheep’s back”. Key sites visited will include the Woolshed, Store, Church, Stableyard and Homestead Gardens. Devonshire tea is included, as well as activity booklets for children.

Tickets are priced at $15 per adult and $7.50 per child. Bookings are essential and can be made by phone, email mail or online.

If you are unable to join us for the special guided tour on 12 May, self guided tours of the historic village-like property are available daily between 10am and 4pm every day during the History Festival.

For other special events happening around South Australia as part of the History Festival throughout May, pick up a copy of the full program at your local Council, Library or Visitor Information Centre or visit the SA History Festival website.

SA State Youth Band Concerts at Bungaree, Sunday 21 January

It’s not often that you have the opportunity to hear over 20 of South Australia’s most talented young brass band musicians demonstrating their talents, and even rarer to have these musicians performing in the Clare Valley.

We are honoured to have the SA State Youth Band staying at Bungaree this week, having 3 days of rehearsals in our historic Woolshed before playing at concerts at some our region’s most picturesque venues. The impressive sounds of brass instruments will fill the air at Sevenhill Cellars, Mintaro Maze, Martindale Hall and several other venues, before the band’s final performances at Bungaree on Sunday 21 January.

The band will provide the music for a special Church Service in St Michael’s Church at Bungaree at 10am on Sunday and then hold its final concert in the Homestead Gardens at 1pm.

St Michael’s Church is located just inside the main entrance gate to Bungaree Station, a short 8-10 minute drive from Clare. The Homestead Gardens are located further down the driveway and there will be appropriate signage to direct visitors to this special concert. A map and directions can be found on our website.

For further information, please don’t hesitate to contact us at Bungaree Station.

SA State Youth Brass band concerts in the Clare Valley during January

Position Vacant: Conference and Events Organiser

Bungaree Station is a historic property located in the Clare Valley that offers a range of unique venues for events, including conferences, weddings, residential training courses, club events, reunions, trade shows and other private and corporate functions.  Whether it is a small corporate retreat, a large wedding reception or an industry event, this picturesque property is likely to have a venue to suit as well as accommodation, catering and beverage packages.

We are currently seeking an experienced Conference and Events Organiser to join our team on a full time basis to enable growth in this area of our business. This position will be responsible for attracting and coordinating efficient delivery of events at Bungaree Station. This position reports to the Tourism Manager and works closely with reception, catering, maintenance and housekeeping staff.

Duties may include but are not limited to the following:

  • attracting events through sales and marketing activities, including attending trade events and conducting targeted campaigns
  • networking and collaborating with key partners to develop new events and support existing regional events
  • responding to function and event enquiries, including preparing quotations for venue and equipment hire, catering and related services within appropriate time frames
  • meeting with clients to discuss their needs, conduct site visits and outline suitable package options
  • organising facilities and details such venue setup, catering, promotional material, audiovisual equipment, accommodation, transport and guest activities
  • ensuring compliance with liquor licensing and food safety regulations as well as other insurance, legal, health and safety obligations
  • specifying staff requirements and coordinating their activities to maximise efficiency and customer satisfaction
  • working with key suppliers to ensure cost-effective delivery of products and services
  • conducting pre- and post – event evaluations and providing input to management reports
  • researching target markets and utilising networks to identify potential event, marketing and product development opportunities

Essential skills, qualities and experience requirements:

  • Diploma qualification (i.e. Business or similar) or minimum 3 years of relevant experience
  • Goal orientated, with drive and self motivation, as well as ability to work across teams to deliver outcomes
  • Excellent time management and communication skills
  • Experience in hospitality, event management, sales and/or marketing
  • Ability to build productive relationships with clients, suppliers and partners
  • Ability to organise multiple events independently
  • Experience in using property/event management software and POS systems
  • Ability to work evenings and weekends, when required for conferences and events

If you possess the required skills, qualities and experience and can demonstrate a successful work history in similar roles, please email a letter of application and current resume to Vicky Stewart, Tourism Manager at .

Applications close on Sunday 28 January.

We thank all applicants for their interest in this role. Only short-listed applicants will be contacted for an interview.

Summer Holiday Special – Stay 2 nights, get 1 additional night free

At Bungaree we are celebrating not only Christmas, but also our 176th anniversary! To coincide with these celebrations and the season of giving, we are offering guests a very special saving on “bed and breakfast” accommodation at Bungaree for stays in January: 3 nights for the price of 2 nights!

A 3 night stay at Bungaree will enable guests to settle in and have time to discover the cool charm of visiting the Clare Valley during the warmer months for themselves, whether they want to cycle the Riesling Trail, enjoy relaxed tasting sessions at boutique cellar doors or catch up over long lunches at wineries. Guests at Bungaree can also explore the historic property at their leisure, meet some of the friendly animals or simply relax by the pool.

This special offer can be booked online through our website or by email or phone.

Booking terms and conditions: Please note that this special offer is valid only for new bookings to stay in January in “bed and breakfast” accommodation at Bungaree. These bookings are not transferrable to alternative dates.

Christmas Eve Service, 5pm 24 December 2017

Come join professional singers in lifting the roof with their voices during our Christmas Eve service at St Michael’s Church at Bungaree Station at 5pm, Sunday 24 December 2017.

Our special guests include:
– Deborah Caddy, who has recently returned from Julie Andrews’ production of My Fair Lady touring Australia and is a regular soloist with the State Opera of SA
– Robin Schemlzkopf , a veteran of Adelaide theatre who recently performed in Fiddler on the Roof at the Arts Theatre this year and will be performing the lead role in A Little Night Music in April 2018.
James Pratt, who recently completed a Master of Music from the Elder Conservatorium in Adelaide, and has performed with the State Opera and interstate Opera companies.

It will be a fabulous Christmas Eve service, led by Father David Thompson and the regular congregation look forward to welcoming any visitors, guests and members of the local community. Deborah, Robin and James will lead our congregation in song, with James also playing the St Michael’s antique organ to provide accompanying music. Christmas drinks and a pooled light supper will follow the service, in the shade of the olive grove surrounding the Church.

St Michael’s Church is located just inside the main entrance gate to Bungaree Station, a short 8-10 minute drive from Clare. A map and directions can be found on our website.

For further information, please don’t hesitate to contact us at Bungaree Station.

Join professional singers and the St Michaels congregation at this special Christmas Eve service at 5pm, St Michael's Church, Bungaree Station


Shearing team at Bungaree, 1880

Special heritage event: “Click go the shears – for 175 years”, 3-6 October 2017

Bungaree Station, one of Australia’s most iconic farming properties, will be to the public with daily guided and self guided tours to mark the historic 175th annual shearing of their famed sheep flock in the original woolshed and celebrate South Australia’s pioneering heritage.

Established by George Hawker in 1841, Bungaree produced one of the country’s most successful sheep flocks at a time when Australia rode “on the sheep’s back”, and today remains the home of the 4th, 5th and 6th generations of the Hawker family. The  property’s woolshed was built n 1842, and has hosted the property’s annual shearing every year, making it one of Australia’s oldest working woolsheds.

To mark the historic occasion of the 175th annual shearing of Bungaree’s famous sheep flock, from Tuesday 3 – Friday 6 October, the property will be open to the public, with daily guided tours and self guided tours. As well as experiencing the excitement of shearing, visitors will be able to admire the craftsmanship of blacksmiths working in a traditional forge and displays of other artisan trades, including heritage stonemasonry and wool spinning and knitting. Vintage equipment, tools and vehicles will also be displayed, as well as Australian made wool products.


Special guided tours and self guided tours are available daily from Tuesday 3 to Friday 6 October:

  • GUIDED TOUR – 10am daily; approximately 2 hour duration
    • Includes complimentary morning tea
    • Visits all key sites around the historic station complex
    • Includes shearing and blacksmith demonstrations, as well as other displays of stonemasonry, vintage tools, vehicles and equipment. Wool spinning and knitting will also be demonstrated on Tuesday and Wednesday, with Australian made wool products displayed throughout the week.
    • Proudly sponsored by Bungaree Station, with proceeds to local charities.
    • $15 per adult, $7.50 per child (Limited tickets, pre-booking recommended)
  • SELF GUIDED TOUR – available between 1pm and 4pm daily
    • Explore the historic station complex at your own pace, with a series of audioposts and signs providing insights into South Australia’s pioneering past
    • See the shearing team and blacksmiths at work and other displays of heritage stonemasonry, vintage equipment, vehicles and Australian made wool products.
    • $15 per adult, $7.50 per child

Tickets available online or by contacting Bungaree Station on telephone 08 8842 2677 or email .

Click Bungaree’s 175 Shearing Event_Flyer to open or download a flyer on this special event.


Painting of Bungaree by colonial artists, ST Gill

Press release: Historic Bungaree Station celebrates 175th Anniversary

PRESS RELEASE: Historic Bungaree Station celebrates 175th Anniversary

Date of Issue: 27 July 2017

One of South Australia’s oldest family businesses and an icon of the Australian pastoral industry, Bungaree Station, will kick off its 175th anniversary celebrations with a unique event that identifies the role that wool and wine have made in the development of the Clare Valley region.

The South Australian colony was only 5 years old when George Hawker and his brothers ventured into the unchartered Mid North, in search of grazing land. In December 1841, the presence of tall trees, good soils and ground water led them to establish Bungaree Station, a property that became the headquarters of one of Australia’s most successful sheep flocks and still remains under the careful stewardship of the Hawker family today.

While sheep were the basis for the property’s fame and settlement of the region, the property also played a role in establishing the region’s fledgling wine industry in the 1850s, with cuttings from grape vines at Bungaree being taken by Brother Joannes Schreiner to establish a vineyard at Sevenhill, where the Clare Valley’s oldest vines now flourish.

On Saturday 26 August, families whose histories are entwined with that of Bungaree will re-enact the Jesuit Brother’s defining journey in reverse – walking vine cuttings from Sevenhill Cellars back to Bungaree to plant and mark the property’s 175 year anniversary.

It is clear that more than just Australia’s sheep flock and the Clare Valley wine industry have been influenced by this iconic property – at times there were over 50 staff and their families living on the village-like property, with shearing teams often doubling this number, so it is hardly surprising that many of their descendants will be joining the Hawker family in making this pilgrimage.

The day will be a celebration of both wine and wool, beginning with a presentation of the vine cuttings by Brother John May (AM) of Sevenhill Cellars and culminate with a cocktail function at Bungaree, in one of Australia’s oldest working woolsheds.

Bungaree’s historic woolshed will also be central to further celebrations later in the year, with the 175th annual shearing of this property’s famed sheep flock on 3 – 6 October being open to the public, with daily guided tours, demonstrations of artisan trades and special displays.

Notes to the Editor:

  • For media enquiries, further details about the events or high resolution images, please contact Victoria Stewart, Bungaree Station, on telephone 08 8842 2677 or email
    – Established by George Hawker in 1841, Bungaree produced one of the country’s most successful sheep flocks at a time when Australia rode “on the sheep’s back”, and today remains the home of the 4th, 5th and 6th generations of the Hawker family.
  • As South Australia’s most northern settlement for some time, the property became like a small village, with its own Church, Station Store, Carpenter’s Shop, Blacksmith Forge, Council Chambers and Police Troopers Station, as well as the Homestead, Woolshed, Shearers Quarters and cottages accommodating staff and their families.
  • Today Bungaree remains the home of the 4th, 5th and 6th generations of the Hawker family, and is a mixed farming enterprise with sheep, cropping, cattle and tourism. Further information on Bungaree Station can be found on the website .
  •  The work of the Hawker family in preserving a unique piece of Australia’s heritage at Bungaree Station has been recognised with State and National Tourism Awards as well as the RM William’s Outback Heritage Award and a UNESCO Award for Heritage and Culture.