The Waikato region has two spectacular landscapes - one above ground, the other below. In both cases, nature has been generous.
The grass really is greener!
On the lush surface, the scenery is green to the extreme. Fertile soils, reliable rainfall and kind temperatures have created a pastoral heaven.
Below the surface, miracles have been wrought with water and limestone. Vast cave systems, huge sink holes and underground streams provide huge scope for adventure.
Waikato was the scene of significant battles during the Maori Land Wars of the mid 19th century. Visit the monuments and museums and discover the fierce history of the region.
In the fast-growing city of Hamilton, the serpentine beauty of the Waikato River is maximised at every opportunity. You can discover parks, gardens and river walks where the forethought of the town planners is plain to see.
The mighty Waikato River travels through the region. At 425 kilometres from end to end, it is the country’s longest river. As well as providing recreational opportunities, the river drives eight hydro dams.
The Waitomo Caves were formed over 30 million years ago, and drip by drip they’re still changing. The natural beauty of stalactites and stalagmites lit by the blue light of glow worms has to be seen to be believed.
On a Matamata sheep farm, you can visit the remnants of Hobbiton, the hobbit village created for the Lord of the Ring’s movie trilogy. View the hobbit holes and find out how the set was created on a guided tour.
Hamilton airport is located 15 kilometres south of the city. The airport services both international (Freedom Air) and domestic flights.
Waikato is situated in the heart of the North Island. The main city, Hamilton, is located 90 minutes from Auckland and Rotorua.
The region enjoys a temperate climate - warm, humid summers and mild winters with prevailing west and southwest winds.
State highways 1 and 3 run through Waikato. The region is also part of the Great New Zealand Touring Route and Thermal Explorer Highway.