Top things to do

Top Choice Museum in Hamilton

Waikato Museum

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


Relocated to a scenic river-side spot with high ceilings and a summer-friendly deck, Gothenburg has morphed from a bar into our favourite Hamilton restaurant. The menu of shared plates effortlessly spans the globe –…
Top Choice Ice Cream in Hamilton

Duck Island Ice Cream

A dazzling array of ever-changing flavours – how does crab-apple crumble or coconut and kaffir lime sound – make Duck Island quite probably NZ’s best ice-cream parlour. The sunny corner location is infused with a hi…
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.
Modern NZ in Hamilton


Simple, sophisticated Palate has a well-deserved reputation for lifting the culinary bar across regional NZ. The innovative menu features highlights like red roasted duck with yams, scallops, shiitake and a chilli b…
International in Hamilton

Scott’s Epicurean

This gorgeous joint features swanky leather banquettes, pressed-tin ceilings, great coffee and an interesting and affordable menu: try the pytti panna (Swedish bubble-and-squeak) for breakfast or the ever-popular sp…
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…
Sports in Hamilton

Balloons over Waikato

A colourful hot-air-balloon fest.
Cafe in Hamilton

River Kitchen

River Kitchen does things with simple style: cakes, gourmet breakfasts and fresh seasonal lunches (angle for the salmon hash), and a barista who knows his beans. It’s the kind of place you visit for breakfast, come …