Family Escapes

Explore together in Hamilton & Waikato

From free attractions and outdoor adventures, to top events and inner-city fun - enjoy a family escape in the Hamilton & Waikato region

Hamilton Gardens Arts Festival, Hamilton New Zealand

Family Events

From kids shows and events to sporting matches and more - find events on in Hamilton & Waikato

Things to see & do

From inner-city fun to Middle-earth movie magic, walking trails and more - find things to see and do in Hamilton & Waikato
Sanctuary Mountain Maungatautari Viewing Tower, Waikato Walks

Family Friendly Activities

From the great outdoors to getting up close and personal with wildlife, there is an abundance of family friendly activities on offer.

Waiorongomai Valley Walk, Te Aroha, New Zealand

Free Attractions

From walking and cycling trails to enchanting gardens and much more - discover Free attractions in Hamilton & Waikato


From B&Bs to motels, hotel, holiday homes and more
Bridal veil falls, Waikato Walks, Raglan, NZ

Top 10 Walks

From easy strolls through picturesque surrounds, to challenging stair climbs with rewarding mountaintop views and stunning waterfall finds, there are plenty of great Waikato walks to enjoy

Hot Deals

Don't Miss

Things To See & Do

From underground adventure and Middle-earth movie magic to wildlife encounters and inn-city fun - there are plenty of great activities to enjoy with your family in the Hamilton & Waikato region

  • Waitomo Glowworm Caves: Visit the world famous Waitomo Glowworm Caves - sure to be a hit with all ages.
  • Black Water Rafting: Get your adrenalin pumping with a Black Water Rafting trip with Waitomo Adventures - perfect for the older kids
  • Hamilton Zoo: Get up close and personal with exotic animals such as Lemur, Rhino and more.
  • Hamilton Gardens: Explore the history of gardens through time. Plus download and follow the Hamilton Gardens Children's Discovery Trail activity sheet.
  • Sanctuary Mountain Maungatautari: Plentiful walks through native forest for close encounters with native birdlife and reptiles.
  • Middle-earth Movie Magic: Discover movie magic with a guided tour through the now permanent Hobbiton Movie Set.
  • SKYCITY Hamilton: Enjoy the range of dining options found inside SKYCITY Hamilton - from Spanish style tapas to cocktail bars and more.
  • Waikato Museum: With great interactive children's exhibitions, the Waikato Museum is a perfect indoor activity.
  • Retail Therapy: Get some retail therapy at NZ's largest shopping complex, Te Awa at The Base.
  • Raglan Rock: Get the adrenalin pumping with a rock climbing adventure with Raglan Rock
  • Lake District Adventures: Take a magical glowwom kayak tour on Lake Karapiro, or hire some bikes to explore the many trails on offer.
  • Plus much more

Upcoming Events

From concerts and music festival to international cricket and cycling events, check out the great summer events on the calendar in the Hamilton & Waikato region.

  • Equidays: 14 - 16 Oct - The annual Equidays event will showcase all aspects of the equine industry, business and recreation at Mystery Creek Events Centre.
  • Arohanui Film Festival: 28 - 30 Oct - The Arohanui Film Festival will brings a range of entertaining, original and adventurous films from around the world.
  • Hamilton Gardens Scarecrow Festival: 30 Oct - Check out the unique entries at the Hamilton Gardens Scarecrow Festival.
  • Grease - the musical: 3 Nov - Grease, the musical is heading to Hamilton’s Claudelands Arena on Saturday 5th November.
  • Gourmet in the Gardens: Oct - March - Enjoy food from around the globe at the popular Gourmet in the Gardens food market, every Sunday from 16th October.
  • The Gruffalo: 21 Oct - The award winning picture book The Gruffalo comes to life on stage live at Claudelands Arena this October.
  • The Taniwha multisport event: 5 Nov - This inaugural event consists of five Mountain Bike categories, five off-road Trail Run categories, three off-road Trail Walk categories and a team Relay Mountain Bike and Relay Trial Run.
  • ANZ International Cricket Series: Nov - Mar -  Support the BlackCaps as they take on Pakistan, Australia and South Africa in the ANZ International Series at Seddon Park.
  • Round the Bridges: 13 Nov - One of the oldest contested running events in NZ, Round the Bridges is open to runners, joggers, walkers and wheelchair athletes.
  • Tri Maori Festival: 26 Nov - This year marks the 5th annual TriMaori Festival, with three triathlon courses and two walk/run events for participants to choose from.
  • Soundsplash: 20 - 22 Jan 2017 - With music, sun, sand and surf on the agenda, Soundsplash is the epitome of a summer festival.

Free Attractions

From meandering through stunning gardens to discovering picturesque waterfalls and more - the Hamilton & Waikato region has plenty of free attractions to enjoy.

  • Waiorongomai Valley: Step back into gold mining history as you explore the Waiorongomai Valley in Te Aroha.
  • Blue Spring at Te Waihou Walkway: Visit the internationally acclaimed springs, with water so pure its supplies around 70% of NZ's bottled water.
  • Wairere Falls: Walk the Wairere Falls track near Matamata for stunning views of the falls and out over the region.
  • Otorohanga Kiwiana Walk: Pick up a quiz sheet from the Otorohanga i-SITE and look for clues on the Ed Hillary walkways.
  • Mangaokewa Scenic Reserve: Explore the attractive bush walk to the Cascade Waterfalls.
  • Hamilton Lake Domain: Stroll around the lake and let the kids loose on the playground.
  • Hakarimata Walkway: Visit ancient Kauri trees, tackle the summit stairs or try the family friendly rail trail tracks.
  • Gallagher Bike Skills Park: Helps your children to learn essential bike skills in a safe environment.
  • Cycle Trails: Ride along the Waikato River Trails, Hauraki Rail Trail or Timber Trail or opt for one of the many great mountain bike parks.
  • Mokena Geyser: Watch the world's only naturally hot soda water geyser erupt every 40 minutes in Te Aroha.
  • Hot Water Beach Kawhia: Head to the end of Ocean Beach road at low tide, start digging to create your very own natural hot water spa right there in the sand.
  • Plus much more


From inner city hotels and motels to rural lodges and beachside holiday parks, the region boasts a range of accommodation to suit all budgets and tastes.

Flying to Hamilton

With direct daily flights from Wellington, Christchurch and most major NZ destinations - its easy to fly directly to Hamilton Airport. Pick up a rental car from the likes of Hertz Hamilton after your flight and get to your holiday faster.