The visually stunning Hamilton Gardens are webbed by paths that journey through a gallery of themed gardens from grand Italy to tranquil Asia. Dogs are not allowed in the enclosed gardens or cemetery, however they are allowed elsewhere on-lead or off-lead in the dog exercise area near Gate 1 carpark. Check out the Cafe for great food for both humans and dogs.
Home to over 600 native and exotic animals, including the largest walk-through aviary in New Zealand dedicated to native birds and plants. Set amidst 25ha of lush and tranquil surroundings, Hamilton Zoo is the ideal destination for a memorable day out. There's a lot to get around, but if you need a break swing by the on site cafe and check out the delicious treats, or dine al fresco in one of our scenic picnic areas.
Waitomo caves has three caves, each with their own unique experience. The most well-known is the Glowworm Caves, where you will embark on a silent boat ride and view the magical creatures lighting up the cave above. Thousands of glow-worms light up the Glowworm Caves. For the adventure people, you can also do Black Water Rafting in the Ruakuri cave where you will head 80-metres below ground, raft in tubes through rapids, jump off waterfalls and float under the glow worms.
In 1998, Sir Peter Jackson’s team of location scouts were searching for the iconic rolling hills and lush green pastures of Hobbiton™ which they found after conducting an aerial search. They noted the area’s striking similarity to The Shire™, as described by JRR Tolkien, and quickly realised that the Hobbits™ had found a home. The beautiful movie set includes 44 permanently reconstructed Hobbit Holes, in the same fantastic detail seen in the movies.
Sanctuary Mountain Maungatautari is the largest ecological ‘island’ on mainland New Zealand. A haven for many of NZ's most endangered species, Maungatautari also provides great walking and hiking tracks plus guided tours.
The Blue Spring at Te Waihou Walkway is spring is fed from the Mamaku Plateau where the water takes up to 100 years to filter through; the resulting water is so pure and clean that it produces a beautiful blue colour while being virtually clear. Swimming is not allowed. The walkway is 4.7 kms one way and you will be able to see trout amonst the wetland and native plantings.
Raglan is located about 30 minutes drive from Hamilton and is well-worth a visit. From surfing, rock climbing, caving and kayaking there is plenty of adventure activities to do. For a more relaxed trip there is walking tracks, galleries and an emerging foodie hot spot.
Zealong Tea Estate is the only commercial tea estate in New Zealand, producing 100% organic award-winning tea. With a tea shop, tea walk, tea ceremony and delicious high tea it is well worth a visit.
Waikato Museum's 13 galleries feature more than 25 new exhibitions and 100 public events annually. Highlights include the war waka Te Winika, a hands-on science gallery for children; and exhibitions of different artworks throughout.
Located only minutes away from the hotel, Tieke Golf Estate is a unique championship course. With natural river sand being a feature of the construction, there is nothing like it in New Zealand.
Established in an old 1960's church you can sit inside or underneath the brew tanks in the garden bar. Watch the brewers craft the Good Beer and Cider on site with weekly/monthly tours available. With bar style food available including burgers and pizzas, you can enjoy your lunch or dinner.
The Cook is located in an odd fellows society hall from the late 1800's. Serving tasty quality food with good wine and beer, they cater for everyone from friends to family.
Located in Rototuna, Good Neighbour Craft Bar and Restaurant is a favourite with locals. The menu includes a range of hand craft pizzas, smoked meats and fresh food. The beer and cider range is delivered fresh daily from the local Good George Brewery in Frankton.
Hamilton Kart Club is one of New Zealand's premier kart circuits. The club hosts many National and North Island events along with the major event in September which includes many of NZ's top drivers.
There is no better way to experience the Mighty Waikato river than speeding up it in a 450hp V8 jet boat. Take the opportunity to visit the Karapiro dam and see amazing native bush and wildlife.
Riverside Adventures provides outdoor experiences on or along the Waikato River south of Lake Karapiro. Offering tour adventures or can plan your own, they have a range of bikes, e-bikes, kayaks and stand-up paddle boards for hire. They also offer shuttle services to and from nearby bike trails.
Enjoy a relaxing scenic boat cruise with the best views of the Waikato River and Hamilton City. With hot and cold meals on board, you can enjoy brunch, lunch or dinner with a 2 hour leisurely cruise.
Waterworld based in Te Rapa offers something for everyone. With six pools, hydroslides, full-service gym and classes you are welcome if you are just wanting to have a splash or are a serious swimmer.
Kiwi Balloon Company's hot balloon flights take place daily from one of the Hamilton Lakes. Flying over the city, farmlands and the mighty Waikato River, the scenery and stillness will take your breath away.
Woodlands Garden Grove country cafe and bar is nestled within the historic Woodlands Victorian Estate. There is food, coffee and a full bar with craft beer on tap. Garden Grove has plenty of spaces to play and explore with the family including a cricket oval, trolleys, cricket set/balls and interactive games. Dog-friendly if on a lead.
The esplanade walkway around Hamilton Lake Domain is a popular fitness circuit and walking route. The playground beside the Verandah Cafe provides kids a place to play while their minders enjoy a coffee with a view of the lake, which can also be enjoyed from the covered picnic area.
Hinterland Adventures offers paintball, laser tag, and archery all situated over an awesome 10 acre block on the banks of the Waikato river. They can also organise clay bird shooting at an off-site location in Ngaruawahia.
Explore the river by bike with pickup and dropoff depots along the 70km Te Awa cycle way. Book a pre-made package which includes e.bike hire so all you need to do is show up.
Raglan rock offers canyoning under the night sky, rock climbing or caving with glowworms. Can cater for all levels from first time experiences to in depth courses.
Experience the kiwi alpaca lifestyle by meeting friendly alpacas, visiting the alpaca gift shop or enjoying a bit to eat at the onsite cafe. Located just a 10 minute drive from Hamilton, great for the whole family.
The Sculpture Park at Waitakaruru Arboretum provides an Art-in-Nature experience with sculptures and installations located amongst a 2km winding trail. Perfect for a family picnic, the park offers children ways to interact with nature in a creative way.
Nikau cave & cafe has one of the most beautiful glowworm caves with thousands of glowworms and amazing foundations. The cafe is the perfect place to enjoy breakfast or lunch. Dogs are welcome at the cafe outside tables, but must be kept on a leash.
With over 100 classic cars on display plus an extensive collection of petrol memorabilia there is something to cater for everyone. Including vintage toys, pedal cars and scenes from early New Zealand.
Located 15 minutes west of Hamilton, is Karamu Trail Track. Catering for Horse Treks for both the beginners, first time riders or the more experienced. Horses are supplied and you will be going through lots of hills, bush and great scenery.
Its all about having fun, involving the whole family including parents! With so many inflatable activites on offer, your kids won't be bored. Great way to pass 3 hours, you are welcome to bring your own snacks and non-alcoholic drinks.
Located just outside of Hamilton, Lavender Backyard Garden grows lavender and blueberries. They distill their own essential oils to create natural aromatherapy and skin care items. During summer you can pick your own lavender and blueberries.
Family entertainment centre offers Ice Age mini golf, laser tag, arcade, virtual reality and escape rooms all under one roof.
Blastacars is the ultimate karting experience as the karts are hand crafted, powerful karts that are designed to drift sideways on purpose built, indoor tracks. If you are looking for something unique and fun to do whether it be by yourself or with a group, Blastacars is a great adrenaline pumping experience.
The Keg Room has an exclusive K9 menu that will leave your furry friend spoilt for choice with savoury and sweet options, catering to any picky palate. They not only have doggicino’s on offer but offer tasty treats too such as Chicken Liver Dust, Peanut Butter and Banana Pupcake or Droolicious Doggie Donut.
There are several dog exercise areas in Hamilton, where you can exercise your dog off lead. You must be able to control your dog with a whistle whilst off lead, and the dogs are not allowed in any children’s play areas.
Resthills Park is a great place to take your dog to run off-leash. It is a huge area with different landscapes such as grassy fields, wood/bush area and farm stock in a nearby paddock.
Day's Park has a large grassy area with pathways to walk along, as well as access to the Waikato River for your dogs to have a splash around. Usually lots of other dogs around wanting to play.
Braithwaite Park is part of the Te Awa, great NZ river ride so you can go cycling with your dog. They also have a good option for off-leash run around with access to the river.
The esplanade walkway around Hamilton Lake Domain is a popular walking route. There are off-leash areas where you dog can have a run around prior to going back on-leash for the walkway. Don't let your dog drink from the lake or swim in the lake.