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Some of the country's most spectacular public gardens are within easy reach of Cambridge, offering visitors the chance to admire the beautiful flora and fauna of New Zealand.

The biggest are Hamilton Gardens, 20km and 17 minutes' drive from Cambridge, which attract up to a million visitors a year and host hundreds of events open to the public. They are the Waikato's most popular visitor attraction.

japanese-garden cambridge-isiteThe free-entry gardens sit between the Waikato River and State Highway One on the Cambridge approach to Hamilton.

The grounds are split into sections, each offering a themed display of plants in collections called Paradise, Productive, Cultivar, Landscape and Fantasy. The Productive Collection includes Te Parapara, New Zealand's first traditional Maori garden which shows what was grown before Europeans settled in the country.

North of Cambridge is the Waitakaruru Arboretum and Sculpture Park (13.5km, 17 mins drive), a 17-hectare garden and arboretum that includes more than 18,000 trees and shrubs. Ponds, a lake, waterfalls and a running stream make for a delightful stroll through a park that's been carved into a hillside quarry. The park is at 207 Scotsman Valley Rd, Tauwhare. The park is open for annual pass holders (Friends of the Park) and by appointment for organised groups (10+), concerts,weddings and other events. It is not open for casual visitors.

The Woodlands Historic Homestead is half an hour's drive north of Cambridge, in Whitikahu Rd, Gordonton. Built in 1872, the homestead is a classic villa surrounded by stunning gardens that are open to the public, free of charge, Tuesday-Sunday.

The closest public gardens to the centre of Cambridge are the Thornton Road Gardens, on the boundary of the Cambridge Domain. The gardens include a Begonia hot house, rose gardens, a fountain and band rotunda.

The neighbouring town of Te Awamutu is often called "Rosetown" after its impressive public Rose Gardens in Gorst Avenue (25.5km, 28 mins drive). The gardens, established in 1969, have more than 50 varieties and more than 2,500 bushes of roses that flower between November and May, attracting thousands of visitors.

Taitua Arboretum, a 20 hectare reserve owned by the Hamilton City Council, has mature trees, lakes, woodland gardens and plenty of space for picnics and children. It's at 55 Taitua Rd, Temple View (32km and about half an hour's drive from Cambridge). Entry is free.


Te Awamutu - Lake Ngaroto

Between Te Awamutu and Ohaupo, Lake Ngaroto is a pleasant flat walk around the peat lake, suitable for most ages and levels of fitness.


Cambridge Model Engineering Society Inc

Every Sunday during Summer, from May every 1st and 3rd Sunday.
10am - 3.00pm. Weather permitting.
$2.00 per ride
Fully-enclosed shoes essential

Maungakawa (Sanatorium Hill)

Native bush loop walk (approximately 30 minutes duration) with lovely views over Cambridge area.

National Wetland Centre

Imagine a place where people can learn how important wetlands are, the human benefits they provide and the unique plant and animal communities they support.

Visit Rotopiko Reserve for a pest-free picnic. Enjoy easy walks, lake views, ancient swamp forest, rare plants and native birds.

Lola Silcock Park

Located behind the Council building in Wilson Street.
Entry is from Bath Street or at the end of the driveway to the Council office.

Japanese Gardens

Located beside the Cambridge Library in Wilson Street.
Developed to commemorate the Cambridge sister city of "Bihoro" Japan

Cambridge Walking Tracks

Pick up your copy from the i-SITE.

Lake Te Koo Utu

A hidden jewel, Lake Te Ko Utu has a well established walkway around its perimetre and seven different tracks leading down to it from street level.
Public BBQ available

Cambridge Tree Trust

The Cambridge Tree Trust is a non-profit volunteer organisation dedicated to keeping Cambridge beautiful.

Jubilee Gardens

Located in front of the Cambridge Town Hall and plaza.
Includes the Town Clock and cenotaph


Sanctuary Mountain, Maungatautari

An ancient forest right here in the Waikato, just 30 minutes drive from Cambridge
Visitor Centre open 7 days a week
 Bush walks and guided tours

Thornton Road Gardens

These gardens include the Rose Gardens, Sunken Gardens and indoor Begonia House


Waipa District Council

Covering the major towns of Te Awamutu and Cambridge and the smaller settlements of Temple View, Ohaupo, Pirongia and Kihikihi.
Office Hours Monday-Tuesday 8am - 5pm, Wednesday 9am - 5pm, Thursday -Friday 8am - 5pm

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Play & Stay

Cambridge offers a range of activities with something to meet all ages and interests. Read More
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