Tim lived in his 16ft summer home on Great Barrier Island, NZ for four months straight.

Every fall, we suddenly get a wave of inquiries from tipi enthusiasts in New Zealand and Australia. Your spring is in the air and it seems that more and more of us are being called to live close to nature or to have a hide-a-way where we can escape the modern world. We therefore decided to dedicate a page especially to you, in order to answer the most common questions that pertain to your countries. All prices are stated in US Dollars.


Both New Zealand and Australia have a variety of climate zones and we recommend different fabrics for different uses. Unfortunately, there is a big ozone hole above most of your region, and the UV is pretty harsh. This will be the major factor affecting the lifespan of your tipi cover. If at all possible, choose a spot for your tipi that is shaded. Next, in parts of the country it is both hot and humid, and mold and mildew can develop rapidly. Although all our fabrics are treated with an anti-fungal solution, it only prevents mold and mildew for so long. As we have heard about extreme cases where mold developped within weeks in Australia, we now recommend that you treat your cover with a water repellent finish before you put it up. For a more suitable fabric for your climate, contact Rainbow Tipis in Byron Bay, NSW, Australia.

Our 13oz Sunforger is lightweight, so it will dry quickly, and it is our experience that mold can be cleaned off easy. The lightweight material will not hold up as long as the heavier material if it is constantly exposed to direct sunlight with high UV radiation.

Our 15oz All Weather Sunforger is a sturdy fabric designed for all year living, including cold winters. This fabric consist of 15oz of 100% cotton, so it will last longer than the 13oz. We believe that cotton holds up better against UV radiation than polyester blends. It is also easy to clean in case mold and mildew develop.

We do not necessarily recommend the 13oz flame resistant fabric, unless you are obliged to have it due to fire regulations. Campgrounds in the US have to have this fabric. It has one extra chemical in the mix, so if you don’t have to have it, the 15oz All Weather Sunforger fabric is a better fabric for year around living. If you worry about a fire inside, you can always choose a flame resistant liner to feel more comfortable.


We are getting more and more parents and grandparents searching for a durable and meaningful birthday, Christmas or Easter present for their kids. Although sending a kids’ tipi half way around the world does not make our tipi the most economic option, it certainly is a unique, authentic and one-of-a-kind gift for your little ones. We can send the tipi plain for your kids to paint it, or with two buffalo skull shields sewn onto it. The kids tipi comes in a white 10oz flame resistant material, or, if you prefer, we can also make it out of the 13oz Sunforger in tan or white. In both cases, the tipi without poles costs US$238, with poles it costs US$250. Shipping the tipi without poles costs US$95, with poles US$205 for both New Zealand and Australia. We suggest getting your own poles for the kids tipi, you will need 9 x 10ft and 2 x 8ft poles, and bamboo works well. Total cost incl. shipping without the poles is US$333, with poles it is US$455. If you like your kids tipi to be custom painted, we will be happy to give you a cost estimate for the artwork.


Unless you order 10 or more tipis at once, it is not practical or economical to send tipi poles half around the world, except for the kids tipi poles, which are 4ft kiln-dried wooden dowels that get sleeved together. All our customers of big tipis have managed to get their own poles and often, the choice is bamboo instead of trees. Bamboo works well and is inexpensive, but it might not last as long as trees. Ask at a bamboo farm, there are many of those around in Australia at least. Check out www.bamboo-oz.com.au for example, they are in Queensland. Below is a contact address for poles in Australia. If you know of any other source where poles can be purchased, either in New Zealand or Australia, please let me know so I can add them to this list:

Tipi Pole Measurement
Tipi Size Diameter Number
of Poles
(see also*)
at Butt
at Tripod**
8ft (kids) 11 10-12 ft 1.5 inch 1.0 inch
12ft 14 16ft 2.5 inch 1.3 inch
14ft 17 18ft 3.0 inch 1.5 inch
16ft 17 20ft 3.0 inch 1.5 inch
18ft 17 24ft 3.0 inch 1.5 inch
20ft 17 25-27 ft 3.5 inch 1.7 inch
22ft 20 27ft 3.5 inch 2.0 inch
*= Two of them are smoke flap poles. Please cut them to (Tipi Size + 2ft). Kids: 8ft** = The tripod is at the vertical height of: (Tipi size minus approx. 3 ft)

Samford, Brisbane, QLDBamboo: Kaes at Bamboo
Nursery, ph: 0434 831 707

Bamboo Australia,  Belli Park – QLD
Receive a 25% discount if you get a Nomadics Tipi

Rainbow Tipis, Byron Bay – NSW
They sell tipis and poles separately. They also sell our tipis.

Yarri Springs, Balingup-Western Australia
Telephone: (08) 9764 1002

To the left is a table that tells you exactly how many poles you need and how sturdy they need to be.


We now have found a new way of shipping Fedex Economy directly to your home address. Most tipis will arrive in two packages, one of them will be 24”x20”x12” and the other will usually be 18”x18”x12”, unless you are getting the 22ft tipi size. Additional importation fees are mainly the GST and duty as percentage of the value of the package.

Below you will find the total charges from us for your tipi package (cover, liner, door, ropes, pins, stakes, sack) and freight to your door, not including importation costs mentioned. The prices given are close estimates and reflect the total amount which we will bill you in US$. If you are ordering more than one tipi, freight prices go down, and we give quantity discounts up to 7%.

Tipi Package and Freight for Australia

Note: Freight costs are close estimates only (as of March 2014)
Tipi Size 12ft 14ft 16ft 18ft 20ft 22ft
Weight Kg 24kg 27kg 34kg 43kg 52kg 61kg
Tipi Package $704 $866 $1,064 $1,253 $1,471 $1,890
Freight $325 $365 $375 $425 $515 $545
Sydney/Perth $1,029 $1,231 $1,439 $1,678 $1,986 $2,595
425gr. Sunforger ALL WEATHER
Tipi Size 12ft 14ft 16ft 18ft 20ft 22ft
Weight Kg 25kg 30kg 36kg 47kg 56kg 70kg
Tipi Package $849 $1021 $1,194 $1,378 $1,596 $2,015
Freight $325 $375 $365 $395 $490 $525
Sydney/Perth $1,174 $1,376 $1,559 $1,673 $2,086 $2,540
22ft tipi packages include a 9ft liner.

Tipi Package and Freight for New Zealand

Note: Freight costs are close estimates only (as of March 2014)
Tipi Size 12ft 14ft 16ft 18ft 20ft 22ft
Weight Lbs 52lbs 60lbs 75lbs 95lbs 115lbs 135lbs
Package $704 $866 $1,064 $1,253 $1,471 $1,890
Freight $250 $280 $300 $330 $415 $495
Auckland $954 $1,141 $1,304 $1,528 $1,811 $2,285
15oz. Sunforger ALL WEATHER
Tipi Size 12ft 14ft 16ft 18ft 20ft 22ft
Weight Lbs 55lbs 65lbs 80lbs 105lbs 125lbs 155lbs
Package $849 $1,021 $1,194 $1,378 $1,596 $2,015
Freight $280 $300 $310 $350 $435 $545
Auckland $1,129 $1,321 $1,504 $1,728 $2,031 $2,520
22ft tipi packages include a 9ft liner.

When UPS delivers your packages, you might be charged importation fees. These charges are local and you will be billed in your local currency. New Zealand has a the time of writing 5% duty and 15% GST. In Australia, no GST is charged as long as the value of the package is under AU$1000. Please inquire about your duty rate locally, it seems to vary. If the invoice that we attach to your freight is above AU$1000 in merchandise, a 10% GST is charged as well as 3% import duty. Businesses however can reclaim the GST part on their B.A.S return if we quote your ABN on our invoice. Please indicate at the time of order if you have an ABN and we will put it on the invoice.

The time between order and shipment can be 4 – 8 weeks. Shipping takes up to 10 business days. Once Fedex picks up the cartons, we will e-mail you the tracking number, so you can follow your tipi’s route to its new home.


Just in the last few years, we have sold our tipis to people in Tasmania, Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane, Adelaide, Cairns, Perth, Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch. The tipis are used as meditation spaces, massage rooms at retreats, guest houses, and as a weekend retreat or permanent living space on private land. Our most common sizes sold in your region is the 20ft and 22ft, you seem to be used to spaciousness. Some of our customers are real tipi enthusiasts and love to share their experience and expertise with other like- minded folks. I got their permission to forward their contact e-mail to other potential customers in their area, for a unbiased chat about their experience of purchasing and living in a Nomadics Tipi. If you are interested in sharing your knowledge as a Nomadics tipi owner or know about a business that sells tipi poles, please let me know: Nicole at Nomadics@tipi.com

We look forward to hearing from you and assisting in growing the tipi community in your country.

With warmest regards,
Nicole & Jeb