We consume a lot of honey in our home, so when we learned that you can visit Hunter’s Honey Farm in Martinsville, Indiana and have a whole hands-on honey and bee experience, we hopped in the car and made the 45 minute drive from downtown Indy. The driveway to Hunter’s Honey Farm is lined with pine trees which are available at Christmastime for you to purchase, cut and bring home. The farm is open Monday – Saturday, 9am-6pm. Call ahead to be sure tour or activities are available the day you would like to visit.
Hunter’s Honey Farm in Indiana
This 100 year old family farm produces honey and honey products, but the best part is, they offer tours and hands on honey and bee activities. The honey shop is open daily Monday – Saturday and you can find honey in large and small quantities, those colorful and flavorful honey sticks, honey candy, honey barbecue sauce, beeswax, beeswax candles, beeswax furniture polish and many more bee products.
Hunter’s Honey Farm Tours
There are many tour options available from Hunter’s Honey Farm, some are available on weekdays only and others are available Monday – Saturday. Options include touring the beehive, touring the honey barn, a forestry tour, a hayride wagon tour and the worker tour.
Beehive Experience Tour
The visit to the beehive was the bee experience that our whole family has been most excited about for years! I finally felt like my kids were old enough to try it. At ages 3, 4, 7 and 9, I was able to have a conversation with them before our visit to discuss fear of bees, fear of being stung by a bee and how they needed to be slow and gentle to avoid alarming the bees.
On our tour we wore the top part of a beekeepers outfit that included long sleeves, a shirt and a hat — they were all one piece and one size and it was very weird to not have access to brush hair out of your face or scratch your head or whatever weird things you don’t realize you have the opportunity to do when you aren’t all covered up. Wearing this gear is optional and only available for a certain number of people. There were five of us and we all wore them. If anything, I feel like it gave me kids the idea of being protected and the confidence to participate in something they would typically be frightened of.
During our tour, we learned about the smoker and how it alarms the bees and gets them to return to the hive. We heard about the three different types of bees and how they work and make things. Tony, our beekeeper guide opened the hive for us and pulled out the pieces to show us the honeycomb and other parts. Probably the favorite parts for my kids were pushing their fingers in to the honeycomb and tasting the honey that oozed out….seriously, we ate fresh honey from a hive. They also loved operating the hand-held smoker.
We asked Tony a lot of questions about the bees, about honey and we learned that the bees go on vacation every winter. They get to go to Florida to “help” in the orange fields and in California, they are essential in the almond groves.
I know you’re all wondering if any of us were stung by a bee. We were not stung by a bee and my kids were so good about the whole thing! I’m telling you, those outfits worked like a charm at keeping them calm (my kids) and then they didn’t run around and act all wild, which kept the bees calm.
Honey House Tour
This was our second tour of the Hunter Farm Honey House. We visited a few years ago during the winter, that’s when our knowledge of bees was very limited. A winter visit doesn’t let you see any bees, not one. But you can see the warehouse and learn about the bees. It’s much better to visit in the summer when the hives are on the farm and it’s warm outside. The Honey House tour takes your through the warehouse to see the storage of honey and where things happen; extraction, packing, bottling and candle making area. Your tour guide will also give you a presentation about the parts of a bee and how they make honey and other bee products.
Favorite Thing to do at Hunter’s Honey Farm
Lulu, age 9 – “My favorite part was holding the hive with the bees all over it and sticking my fingers in the beeswax to get the honey.”
James, age 4 – “I liked putting the honey inside the bear.”
Scout, age 7 – “Sticking my finger in the hive to get the honey was my favorite. Also, I didn’t get stung by a bee! It was really fun!”
Quinn, age 3 – “The bears. Eating the honey.”
Making Beeswax Candles at Hunter’s Honey Farm
You can add activities on to your Hunter’s Honey Farm tour, or you can purchase package that has everything you want to do! We rolled our own beeswax candles and I love them! It was very easy, took about two minutes and each of my kids loves them. My “just turned” three year old needed some help with hers and my 4 year old needed a teeny bit of help, but my 7 & 9 year olds had no trouble. I can’t wait to burn these candles. Did you know that beeswax candles actually purify your air? They release no smoke, no odor and leave behind no waste or soot. They also release negative ions to purify the air and remove allergens!
Pouring Honey at Hunter’s Honey Farm
A favorite activity that’s super easy for all ages is to fill your own plastic bear bottle with honey. Guests will label their bear, head to the pouring room and place the bear under the spout. With the tab of a pedal, the bear begins to fill with honey and stops when it’s full. My kids would have been happy all day long.
Hunter’s Honey Farm makes a variety of honey and bee related products. A favorite part of the tour for our family is the honey sampling table. There are honeys collected from hives in different types of flower fields and at different times of years, sample those to see if you can taste the difference. Hunter’s also has a variety of honey whipped with other ingredients; our favorite was chocolate hazelnut honey and peanut butter honey.
Hunter’s Honey Farm would have been a fine place to visit with most strollers, but unnecessary in most cases. Unless you do the forestry tour, there isn’t very much walking involved, just to the hive in a field near the shop, but my four year old was “tired of walking” about 10 steps in to it all. The tour is 100% standing. Bring along a picnic and enjoy your lunch outside in the picnic area.
Call ahead to schedule your tour (765.537.9430). Prices for the tour activities are available online and prices start at $4 each person per activity. I recommend calling ahead to see which activities will be available on the day of your visit. Remember that bees are not that active in cold weather. Hunter’s Honey Farm offers package deals with multiple activities wrapped into one price.
6501 W. Honey Ln