Pompallier Mission and Printery, Russell

4.7
#1 of 23 in Things to do in Russell
Historic Site Tourist Spot
New Zealand's oldest Roman Catholic building, Pompallier Mission and Printery also represents the country's oldest rammed-earth structure. The pioneering Catholic missionaries constructed the building in the 19th century, using the rammed-earth style of their hometown Lyon. Step inside to learn about the processes of tanning, printing, and binding that the missionaries used to produce over 30,000 books and tracts, some published in Maori. After the guided tour you can explore the award-winning heritage garden, offering sweeping beach-side views across the bay. To visit Pompallier Mission and Printery and other attractions in Russell, use our Russell travel itinerary planner.
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388 reviews
Google
4.8
  • We were very impressed with the tour guide who filled us in on the mission and history of Russell. Very interesting!  more »
  • Well worth spending some time looking around this small French mission, some nice history good and bad.  more »
  • This was another place we could use our National Trust membership. The mission produced printed books in Maori. We had a guide with just the two of us who was extremely informative and took us through...  more »
Google
  • Great tour, knowledgeable staff, fun facts that kept us talking long after we left
  • Taking a guided tour of the Pompallier Mission house was the highlight of our short trip to Russell. We enjoyed learning so much about the history of the origins of the mission in NZ from our delightful guide, Joan. She shared so many facts and interesting stories and demonstrated to us how life for the early missionary settlers must have been. My wife even got to make a print with the original proofing press. The grounds and building are lovely, but far more engaging when we learned from Joan the details of the history surrounding them. If you are visiting Russell, even for a short trip, it is well worth taking this most interesting guided tour.
  • Just had coffee and cake but looked lovely from the out side
  • Awesome historic site! People there were really friendly
  • Interesting.. but could do without an hour tour (compulsory).