Where the mighty Waikato River meets the ocean, Port Waikato is a surfing hot spot in the summer months. Journey south along the coast to the Nikau caves and past the limestone outcrops in the surrounding hills which were the setting for Weathertop Hollow in The Lord of The Rings.

Port Waikato itself is a somewhat untouched slice of NZ coastline, meaning fewer crowds and more spaces to discover.

Port Waikato wharf, Port Waikato, NZ

Fishing at Port Waikato

The setting for Weathertop Hollow is located on private farmland, but a view of the limestone formations and scenery can be seen from the road side down Waikaretu Road. Continuing further down this road will lead to Nikau Cave which features glowworms, cave formations and personalised tours.

Fishing enthusiasts can delight with surf casting and river fishing providing Kahawai and the NZ delicacy, whitebait, while the nearby township of Pokeno is worth a visit, known for its giant ice-creams and organic bacon.

Located in the northern part of the Hamilton & Waikato region, the area is steep in Maori history. Many of the significant battle sites of the NZ Land wars rest within the north Waikato, which is home to the Maori King and Kingitanga movement.

limestone outcrops in the surrounding hills were the setting for Weathertop Hollow in The Lord of The Rings

From one era in time to another, visitors can marvel at the ancient kings of the forest as they still stand tall on the Kauri walk on the Hakarimata Ranges or hear the roar of engines at one of the areas popular motorsport facilities which hold regular events.