Explore Hamilton & the Waikato Region
About the region
Hamilton is the fourth largest City in New Zealand and has a diverse range of commercial enterprises and a vibrant city centre with entertainment, dining and conferencing.
With the Waikato River flowing through the City, Hamilton presents a gentle, scenic locale for visitors who can meander the parklike setting of the river banks or explore the river on a scenic cruise.
The city centre has an array of shops, cafes, restaurants, bars and entertainment that extends to outlying areas such as the historic township of Cambridge, which is also within easy reach of visitors to Hamilton.
Heartland Ambassador Hotel Hamilton is close to the city centre and, with ample parking and easy access is the perfect base for a Hamilton stopover or exploring the wider region. With plenty of walking areas around the river banks and large lake, visitors can take advantage of dog friendly rooms at the hotel to make a stay that the whole family can enjoy.
Getting to and around the region
Intercity bus services run from major North Island centres to Hamilton with frequent services from Auckland. The Waka Huia train service also runs twice daily from Auckland to Hamilton. The regional airport has flights from New Zealand’s major airports and is located 15 minutes drive from central Hamilton. Exploring the Waikato Region is best achieved by car. Self-drive is a scenic way to see the region and explore the many tiny rural townships along the way, with artsy cafes, galleries and gift shops.
Dining in Region
From the Heartland Ambassador Hotel, guests can step out into the centre of Hamilton’s dining and entertainment district. From family dining to Bistro-styled dining and much more, visitors will find plenty of options to satisfy their appetite, any time of the day or evening.
Beyond Hamilton city, visitors can find excellent cafes right around the region, with fresh, local produce and generous serves as the region’s hallmark.
Conferences, Meetings and Business Events
Heartland Ambassador Hotel is conveniently located near the City’s major entertainment, sports, conference and expo venues. With ample onsite parking and a friendly, relaxed vibe with onsite recreational facilities, Heartland Ambassador Hotel is a “home away from home” for busy conference and expo goers looking to wind down after a day’s work.
What to See & Do in the Region
The Waikato is picture-perfect and a favourite of garden lovers. The expansive, open spaces of Hamilton Gardens are a must-see, making it the most visited attraction in the region. Ideal for those who appreciate nature, the open spaces make it an excellent place for kids to let off some steam!
With the Waikato River being a constant throughout the region, it is easy and fun to explore the river from the safety and comfort of a cruise operator. Depending on the season, some operators also offer dinner cruises and a historic paddle steamer for an experience with a difference.
Beyond the City of Hamilton, the region is home to some of New Zealand’s most treasured attractions. Just an hour’s scenic drive from Hamilton is the township of Matamata and gateway to ‘Middle Earth,’ and the Hobbiton movie set.
En route to Matamata, visitors are highly encouraged to stop in at Cambridge’s pretty and elegant township. Dubbed the most English of New Zealand towns, the tree-lined township is friendly and resplendent with antique shops, designer homewares and excellent cafes. Cambridge is also the centre of New Zealand’s premier thoroughbred racing and breeding industry that can be easily admired from the roadside.
Also making for an easy day trip from Hamilton are the world-famous Waitomo Caves, where visitors can marvel at these pristine limestone caves and the myriad of glow worms. Guided cave tours also include an underground boat ride along the cave walls. For adventure seekers, cave diving is one to tick off the list! In the vicinity is the original Otorohanga Kiwi House and Native Bird Park.
For those looking to experience the wilds of New Zealand’s west coast, a trip to Raglan, Kawhia or Port Waikato is a must. Giant sand dunes and equally impressive surf make for an exhilarating outdoors experience. Raglan is the heart of the region’s surfing community and is an eclectic destination with interesting shops and popular artisan-styled cafes.