The landscapes you'll encounter in the Waikato will stay with you for all time. Find pure serenity above ground and the most astounding adventures below. View Hamilton scenic video.
Above ground the view is dominated by the serenity of the Waikato River and the rich rolling green of productive farmland. The main centre is Hamilton—a city that serves the thriving farming and university community.
The mighty Waikato river is best experienced from the deck of a classic paddle steamer. While the world passes by, an interesting commentary will tell you about local landmarks, the history of the region and riverbank life.
As of the 2006 Census, the Waikato region held a resident population of 382,716.
Hamilton is famous for its themed gardens, and the local zoo which has the largest free flight aviary in the Southern Hemisphere—an excellent chance to find out about New Zealand's distinctive native birds. The southern end of Hamilton's main street offers an excellent choice of restaurants, cafes and bars.
In the Waitomo area, south of Hamilton, there's a natural labyrinth to discover. Massive subterranean caverns are adorned with stalactites and stalagmites—formations that have been millions of years in the making. Visitors can glide through the darkness on a water-borne barge and admire the beauty and deep silence of the cave where the glow-worms overhead give the effect of an eerie underground sky.
The quirky West Coast beach town of Raglan is known throughout the international surfing community for its amazing left-hand break. As a result, the local township is laid back, crafty and well furnished with good eating places. Even if you don't surf, you'll want to sample the idyllic Raglan lifestyle.
To help plan your Waikato holiday choose from the main categories below:
Key information and facts about the Waikato region.
Major activities and attractions in the Waikato region.