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Nature & Wildlife

Hamilton gardens attractions, things to do

  • 3 minutes

Hamilton Gardens is a glorious taste of what the Waikato has to offer visitors intent on enjoying cultivated spaces, entrancing gardens where the invitation to rest  and relax on a garden seat is irresistible. One of the top things to do is to explore the depth of gardening styles showcased in the Hamilton Gardens.

HAMILTON GARDENS (PUBLIC)

A storyteller of the world’s gardens where the world is interpreted with plantings, garden design and sympathetic sculptures.

GETTING THERE

Entry to Hamilton Gardens is free. Free parking is available on site through Gate 1 and Gate 2. Your gardening senses are tantalized with the magnificent entry into the gardening world through a large Maori inspired flax mat artfully draped over entrance sculptured gates.

The visitor centre, with its gift shop, educational and meeting rooms welcomes visitors with a description of the gardens and advice on the best way to view the gardens (depending on the season and personal interests). There is a cafe looking out over ponds.

The themed gardens are unique in New Zealand public gardens. Hamilton Gardens has designed and created to tell the garden story from around the world. Featured gardens include: Japanese Garden, English and Chinese Gardens, a modernist American Garden and an Italian Garden with the Fantasy Garden becoming a firm favourite with visitors. Think about a Surrealist Garden and be surprised with the creative garden ideas as you saunter through one of Hamilton Gardens latest spaces.

Chinese Pagoda, Hamilton Gardens, Hamilton, Waikato, New Zealand.
Chinese Pagoda, Hamilton Gardens
Hamilton Gardens greenhouse, Waikato, New Zealand
Hamilton Gardens greenhouse

The spacious rose garden on undulating ground is superb for a romantic stroll and contains the NZ Rose Trials and a French Rose Garden. There is a Camellia Garden and a wide lawn flanked by rhododendrons with stunning spring displays. On the upper level a colourful Victorian themed flower garden includes several well-stocked greenhouses planted in a similar theme.

Opening Hours and Tariffs

Check the Hamilton Gardens for up to date information.  Guided Tours are available and it is recommended pre-booking for the 75 minute guided tour. Bookings email is gardens@hcc.govt.nz. For further information regarding guided tours visitors can contact the Information Centre ph +64 7 838 6782.

Hamilton Gardens

Hamilton Gardens is owned and operated by Hamilton City Council. The Gardens is the Waikato Region’s most popular visitor attraction, attracting in excess of 1 million people and holding over 2,000 events each year. The gardens present the theme of ‘the story of gardens’ and are divided into the Paradise, Productive, Fantasy, Cultivar and Landscape garden collections. Entry is free, with most gardens open during daylight hours throughout the year.

The most-visited gardens are the American Modernist Garden, Chinese Scholar’s Garden, English Flower Garden, Japanese Garden of Contemplation, Indian Char Bagh Garden, Maori Garden, The Italian Renaissance Garden, Tudor and Tropical Gardens. Hamilton Gardens is a hive of creativity with new spaces being constructed.

Tulips and other colorful flowers blooming in the Indian Char Bagh Garden in Hamilton Gardens, New Zealand
Tulips and other colorful flowers blooming in the Indian Char Bagh Garden
A close up of large orange-salmon rose of the 'Lady Emma Hamilton' variety in the garden on a sunny summer day, Waikato, New Zealand
Hamilton gardens

HAMILTON GARDENS – ROGERS ROSE GARDEN

The Rogers Rose Garden tells the story of the development of the modern rose through a series of themed areas that each focuses on a different aspect.

Themes

The themed areas of the Rogers Rose Garden include:

  • the species rose;
  • the Malmaison roses of Empress Josephine;
  • the development of the first hybrid tea by Jean-Baptiste Andre Guillot;
  • the ‘Peace’ rose, Mme Meilland and its descendants; and
  • recent cultivars, including past and present winners of the New Zealand Rose of the Year trials.

Pacific Rose Bowl Festival

The Pacific Rose Bowl Festival takes place at Hamilton Gardens every November under the Pacific Accord of Friendship – which also incorporates rose gardens in Adelaide, California and Japan. The legendary New Zealand rose breeder Dr Sam McGredy initiated the friendship with the common objective of promoting roses worldwide.

Read more about places to visit in Hamilton in our Hamilton travel guide.

Hamilton Gardens, traditional Maori cultivation practices and storehouse, Waikato, New Zealand
Hamilton Gardens, traditional Maori cultivation practices and storehouse

Instagram

Hamilton Gardens, Waikato, New Zealand
Hamilton Gardens entrance, Waikato, New Zealand
Hamilton Gardens, Waikato, New Zealand
Hamilton Gardens, Waikato, New Zealand
Hamilton Gardens, Waikato, New Zealand
Hamilton Gardens, Waikato, New Zealand
Mad Hatters tea party, Hamilton Gardens, Waikato, New Zealand
Maori garden, Hamilton Gardens, Waikato, New Zealand
Productive garden, Hamilton Gardens, Waikato, New Zealand
Take a seat, Hamilton Gardens, Waikato, New Zealand
Tudor knot garden complete with sculptural poles + selfie couple, Hamilton Gardens, Waikato, New Zealand
, Waikato, New Zealand
Fantasy Garden entrance, Hamilton Gardens, Waikato, New Zealand
, Waikato, New Zealand
Hamilton Gardens, cafe lunch, Waikato, New Zealand
A close up of large orange-salmon rose of the 'Lady Emma Hamilton' variety in the garden on a sunny summer day, Waikato, New Zealand

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