Visit The Wool Shed Sheep Museum in Wellington

The Wool Shed is a hands-on heritage museum celebrating New Zealand’s sheep farming and shearing history, in the rural town of Masterton. Run by a voluntary trust, they’re a community venue as well as a museum. It consists of two authentic old wool sheds trucked in from local farms, plus a newly constructed gallery building – full of sheep farm gear, including shearing and wool handling equipment. Browse the displays describing the history of sheep farming and its importance to our nation. For many years New Zealand was said to “live off the sheep’s back.” The economy is broader now, but sheep are still important and their story is fascinating. See the samples and descriptions of wool types and wool end-products and even view spinning and weaving demonstrations on Wednesday mornings and by arrangement. See the history of spinning from ancient times and their collection of spinning wheels.

Where is the museum located?

They’re located at 12 Dixon Street, Masterton (opposite Queen Elizabeth Park, next to the iSite and close to Aratoi Museum of Art and History). It takes about 90 minutes to drive from either Wellington or Palmerston North, on State Highway 2.

Enjoy the story of shearing – how it began and how it developed to become highly efficient, and an international sport. Shearing demonstrations are conducted by arrangement – give them a call and they’ll get you sorted. You can also see the traction engine display including the Masterton District Council’s vintage steam roller, which is essentially the same as the vehicles that once were common in rural New Zealand. There are six video displays and eleven buttons you can press to hear farm activities, traction engines and interviews with shearers and farm workers. Visit the shearers’ cookhouse from the 1930s. The shop has a wide range of wool garments, footwear, sheepskin rugs, lanolin cosmetics, gift items, kids’ stuff and souvenirs. There is also much, much more, to stimulate your knowledge for history and actual activities on sheep farms. They are a visitor attraction of international quality and welcome visitors from all over New Zealand as well as thousands of visitors from around the world.

  • Monday – 10:00 to 16:00
  • Tuesday – 10:00 to 16:00
  • Wednesday – 10:00 to 16:00
  • Thursday – 10:00 to 16:00
  • Friday – 10:00 to 16:00
  • Saturday – 10:00 to 15:00
  • Sunday – 10:00 to 15:00
  • Adults – $10
  • Children – $3
  • Families – $20


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