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The service capital of the Mackenzie district and gateway to the Mackenzie Country, this bustling township of around 800 people and rural community is nestled into a rich hinterland with a majestic mountain backdrop.

On one of New Zealand’s most popular tourist routes, on State Highway 8 (Inland Scenic Route between Christchurch and Queenstown), Fairlie plays host to both business and recreational activities. In winter, Fairlie is a base for skiing at Mt Dobson and other ski fields. During warmer months, Lake Opuha is popular for boating and fishing; you can also take a Llama trek around the lake. Hiking, horse riding, mountain biking, trout fishing and farm tours are other popular activities.

The Fairlie area is anchored in strong farming and agricultural roots. A statue of James Mackenzie (19th century sheep rustler, after whom the region is named) stands proudly in Fairlie's main street.

Fairlie Highlights

  • home of multi award winning Fairlie Bakehouse – Lieber Pies and 'cronut' croissant-doughnuts amongst other delicacie
  • abundant trout and salmon river fishing    
  • Lake Opuha boating and family leisure options
  • 18 hole golf course
  • Fairlie Heritage museum and Whisk & Page café - experience life and work in a rural community through farming implements, vintage tractors and vehicles from the past
  • art galleries, local crafts and shopping
  • Scenic helicopter flights, leaving from Farm Barn Cafe and retail outlet at nearby Mt Michael
  • family friendly cafés, restaurants and à la carte dining
  • historic ‘Rimuwhare’, (now Red Stag restaurant & function centre) and Opawa Homesteads (accommodation & functions)
  • winter pursuits, skiing at nearby Mt Dobson
  • walk, hike, bike – Four Peaks High Country Track self-guided tours over a privately owned historic high country station, staying in original musterers’ (shepherds) huts including ‘Sutherlands Hut’ the oldest surviving in New Zealand.
  • New Years’ Day parade – 1st January, vintage machinery and vehicles, entertainment
  • and stalls at the Village Green
  • Transport options include self-drive, several mini bus and coach services
It's not surprising people choose to stay a while longer, Fairlie Property & Real Estate and Fairlie Accommodation


Map of Fairlie

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Fairlie Bakehouse/ Lieber Pies
Fairlie Bakehouse/ Lieber Pies Head to the Fairlie Bakehouse, any day of the week from 7.30am until 4.30pm (except Christmas), where Franz Lieber and his team create gourmet pies and an array of amazing baked goods made with love. Liebe means ‘love’ in German.

Farm Barn Café & Gifts
Farm Barn Café & Gifts The Farm Barn Café and Gifts has long been a destination or stopover for visitors and locals alike, on a sweeping bend on SH79 and Mt Michael Rd, with magnificent views while enjoying a variety of freshly prepared café style food including the famous Fairlie Bakehouse Pies and iconic Denheath Custard Squares.

Four Peaks High Country Track
Four Peaks High Country Track The Four Peaks High Country Track is a private walking/mountain biking track over an historic 10,000 acre high country sheep station. This is an exclusive high country farm experience with...

High Country Carpentry
High Country Carpentry Based in Fairlie, High Country Carpentry Ltd was established in 2004 by Lain and Heather Hellmrich, answering the need for locally based, efficient, skilled carpenters who understand the climatic and environmental challenges in the high country region.

Aorangi Motel
Aorangi Motel Aorangi Motel in Fairlie offers numerous on-site facilities to ensure your stay is enjoyable. Choose one of seven studio, one bedroom or family units as your holiday or work base at the gateway to the majestic Mackenzie country.

Evolve Enterprises Ltd
Evolve Enterprises Ltd Now based in Fairlie and servicing the wider South Canterbury region, Evolve Enterprises Ltd is long established. Founder Richard Willis is dedicated to helping South Canterbury businesses 'Get Health and Safety Sorted'.

Mackenzie District Council
Mackenzie District Council MacKenzie District Council – fostering our communities

Mackenzie Laundries Ltd
Mackenzie Laundries Ltd Mackenzie Laundries is a privately owned commercial laundry based in Fairlie, South Canterbury, supplying high quality linen throughout the Mackenzie District.

Musterer's High Country Accommodation
Musterer's High Country Accommodation Musterer's High Country Accommodation in Fairlie — where luxury and natural splendour come together in the backdrop of the Southern Alps, to form what one international guest described as "a whole other world of peacefulness & serenity

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