Hamilton attractions

Top Choice Museum in Hamilton

Waikato Museum

The excellent Waikato Museum has several main areas: an art gallery; interactive science galleries; Tainui galleries housing Māori treasures, including the magnificently carved waka taua (war canoe), Te Winikawaka; …
Top Choice Gardens in Hamilton

Hamilton Gardens

Spread over 50 hectares southeast of the city centre, Hamilton Gardens incorporates a large park, cafe, restaurant and extravagant themed enclosed gardens. There are separate Italian Renaissance, Chinese, Japanese, …
Monument in Hamilton

Riff Raff

One of Hamilton’s more unusual public artworks is a life-sized statue of Rocky Horror Picture Show writer Richard O’Brien, aka Riff Raff, the time-warping alien from the planet Transsexual. It looks over a small par…
River in Hamilton

Waikato River

Bush-covered walkways run along both sides of the river and provide the city’s green belt. Jogging paths continue to the boardwalk circling Lake Rotoroa, west of the centre. Memorial Park is closer to town and has t…
Zoo in Hamilton

Hamilton Zoo

Hamilton Zoo houses 500-plus species including wily and curious chimpanzees. Guided-tour options include Eye2Eye and Face2Face opportunities to go behind the scenes to meet various animals, plus daily Meet the Keepe…
Museum in Hamilton

Classics Museum

Travel in time amid this collection of more than 100 classic cars from the first half of the 20th century. Even if you’re not a motorhead, you’ll still be dazzled by the crazy Amphicar and the cool Maserati and Corv…
Plantation in Hamilton

Zealong Tea Estate

Interesting tours learning about the only tea plantation in NZ, located around 10km northeast of Hamilton. Delicious high-tea experiences offering tea-infused treats are also available (adult/child $85/60).
Gallery in Hamilton


This contemporary gallery and gift shop is housed in a grand, former post office. It focuses on the best of local art: paintings, glass, prints, textiles and photography.
Historic Site in Hamilton

Turangawaewae Marae

Ngaruawahia (population 4940), headquarters of the Māori King movement, is 19km north of Hamilton on SH1. The impressive fences of Turangawaewae Marae maintain the privacy of this important place, but twice a year v…
Mountain in Hamilton


About 26km north of Hamilton on SH1 is Taupiri (287m), the sacred mountain of the Tainui people. You’ll recognise it by the cemetery on its slopes and the honking of passing car horns – locals saying hi to their lov…