As well as the range of sporting events on in the region, there is a stellar line-up of music festivals, markets and other great events happening throughout the Mighty Waikato.
- Hobbiton Movie Set New Year's Celebration- 12 January 2019: To celebrate the New Year, Hobbiton™ Movie Set will be holding a special four hour New Year’s celebration to commemorate.
- Waka Ama National Sprint Championships - 14-19 January 2019: Teams from around New Zealand will descend on Lake Karapiro to compete in sprints, all with the goal of taking our the championship title in their categories.
- UCI Track Cycling World Championship - 18-20 January 2019: The world’s best track cyclists will descend on the Waikato region for the Tissot UCI Track Cycling World Cup held at the Avantidrome Cambridge.
- Soundsplash - 18-20 January 2019: Soundsplash is a three day summer festival of music, freedom and expression, held in the Wainui reserve in Raglan.
- Ride - 22-27 January 2019: The most impactful community cycling event in the country which includes the New Zealand Cycle Classic, Maunga Madness and The Hobbiton Movie Set Gran Fondo.
- Festival One - 25-28 January 2018: A multi-day Christian festival, which brings together music, creative arts and culture to create a community atmosphere within the festival.
- Fatboy Slim - 25 January 2019: Fatboy Slim will be coming to Hamilton's Claudelands Arena on Friday 25 January 2019.
- HSBC NZ Sevens - 26-27 January 2019: With a rich rugby heritage, Hamilton and the wider Waikato region will once again come alive with sevens rugby action.
- Cricket - 23 November 2018-4 March 2019: With a combination of test matches and ODI all on the agenda, there are plenty of opportunities to grab some mates and head to the cricket in Hamilton this summer.
- Gourmet in the Gardens - 28 October 2018-24 March 2019: From mid-October until March 2019, the region’s best food trucks descend on the Hamilton Gardens to delight the punters eagerly awaiting tasty tucker on sunny Sunday afternoons.
- Kiwigrass Festival - 1-3 February 2019: February 2019 will see the first ever Kiwigrass festival at Narrows Park along the Waikato River in Hamilton.
- Bluewaters Festival - 2 February 2019: The Waikato region's newest music festival, Bluewaters Music Festival, comes to the Mighty River Domain at Lake Karapiro this February 2019.
- Hamilton Gardens Arts Festival - 20 February-3 March 2019: This iconic open-air summer festival celebrates all things creative within the internationally acclaimed and award winning Hamilton Gardens.
- Plus many 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.
- Novotel Tainui Hamilton: On the banks of the Waikato River, within a short distance of the Hamilton City section of the Te Awa cycleway, Novotel offers all the creature comforts of a large hotel.
- Distinction Hotel Hamilton: Boasting 147 rooms and suites, many refurbished in 2017, free unlimited Wi-Fi, restaurant & bar, fitness centre, indoor swimming pool & spa pools.
- Kelly Rd: Contemporary, luxury accommodation including studio units and one/two bedroom apartments in Cambridge.
- Ibis Tainui Hamilton: The hotel presents the only restaurant in the city with breath taking views of the Waikato River - a great place to enjoy unique local flavors
- Ventura Inn & Suites Hamilton: A warm welcome that's worth checking into - Ventura is great value accommodation for a night away.
Family flying to Hamilton?
With direct flights daily from Wellington, Christchurch and more, it's easy to get your sporting fix this summer.
- Find Flights: Fly direct to Hamilton airport.
- Hertz Hamilton: Grab a rental car from Hertz Hamilton, located at Hamilton Airport.
- Plus many more options
Make the most of your visit to the Mighty Waikato these great activity suggestions. From underground wonders and Middle-earth Movie Magic to wildlife encounters, kayak trips and much more.
- Waitomo Glowworm Caves: Visit the world famous Waitomo Glowworm Caves and gaze in awe at the galaxy of glowworms. Grab a Cave combo deal and visit the Ruakuri Cave (pictured above) as well.
- Hobbiton Movie Set: Discover movie magic with a guided tour through the permanent set as seen in The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit film trilogies.
- Hamilton Gardens: Explore the award-winning Hamilton Gardens and discover different civilisations and historically important garden styles from the farthest reaches of the world.
- SKYCITY Hamilton: Check out SKYCITY Hamilton's new Bowl & Social for ten pin bowling, great food and timezone games.
- Waitomo Adventures: Get your adrenaline pumping with a zipline, abseil or black water rafting trip with Waitomo Adventures, or try their newest family friendly tour, the Troll Cave.
- Sanctuary Mountain Maungatautari: Discover Plentiful walks through native forest for close encounters with birdlife and reptiles.
- Hamilton Zoo: Get up close and personal with exotic animals such as Lemur and Rhino with a Eye2Eye encounter at Hamilton Zoo.
- Waikato Museum: With top art, history and interactive kids exhibitions the Waikato Museum is a perfect indoor activity for the entire family.
- Hampton Downs: Challenge friends and family to a few laps of go karting at Hampton Downs and get the blood pumping with a V8 Muscle Car or Supercar experience.
- Zealong Tea Estate: Treat yourself to a high tea overlooking the stunning tea plantation.
- Lake District Adventures: Take a magical glowwom kayak tour on Lake Karapiro, or hire some bikes to explore the Waikato River Trails.
- Raglan Kayak & Paddleboard: Explore Raglan's limestone coast with kayak & paddleboard tours and rentals.
- Raglan Surf School: Learn to surf on Raglan's world famous left-hand surf breaks.
- Good George Brewery: Learn all about the brewing process and their award-winning beers with a Brewery Tour, or enjoy a bite to eat in the dining hall.
- Go Skydive: Get your adrenaline pumping with a skydive from up to 13,000ft, providing stunning views of the Waikato region below.
- Plus much more.
From meandering through stunning gardens to discovering picturesque waterfalls and climbing to mountaintop views - there are plenty of free attractions to enjoy in the Mighty Waikato.
- 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
- Hamilton Gardens: Download and follow the Hamilton Gardens Children's Discovery Trail activity sheet
- 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
- Mokena Geyser: Watch the world's only naturally hot soda water geyser erupt every 40 minutes in Te Aroha - while you are there check out the free foot pools in the domain
- Cycle Trails: From the banks of the Waikato River to the ancient Pureora Forest, there are many cycle trails to enjoy
- Plus much more