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 park on the site of the former Embassy Theatre where O’Brien worked as a hairdresser, though it’s hard to imagine 1960s Hamilton inspired the tale of bisexual alien decadence. Opposite the statue, the bright red 'Frankenfurter's Lab' actually conceals convenient public toilets.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby attractions

1. ArtsPost

0.08 MILES

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…

2. Riverbank Lane

0.11 MILES

Explore this laneway with good restaurants and cafes and interesting shopping. To the right of the lane, a recently developed outdoor area has good views…

3. Waikato Museum

0.12 MILES

The excellent Waikato Museum has several main areas: an art gallery; interactive science galleries; a Waikato River exhibition; and Tainui galleries…

4. Waikato River

0.15 MILES

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,…

5. Hamilton Gardens

1.51 MILES

Spread over 50 hectares southeast of the city centre, Hamilton Gardens incorporates a large park, a cafe, a restaurant, and extravagant themed and…

6. Classics Museum

1.74 MILES

Travel back through 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…

7. Hamilton Zoo

3.85 MILES

Hamilton Zoo houses 500-plus species including wily and curious chimpanzees. Guided-tour options include Face2Face opportunities to go behind the scenes…

8. Zealong Tea Estate

5.72 MILES

Interesting tours learning about the only tea plantation in NZ, located around 10km northeast of Hamilton. Delicious high-tea experiences offering tea…