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The Waikato is a foodies delight with an array of renowned restaurants, eateries and artisan producers calling the region home. Sample award-winning gourmet cheese, ice-cream and fresh in-season produce, browse at the numerous farmers markets, and dine at top cafes and restaurants.
The mighty Waikato is full of hidden gems we know you’ll LOVE!
Restaurants & Dining Options
Amazing foodie spots can also be enjoyed throughout the region’s towns and rural surrounds – from on-site destination cafes at local coffee roasters and berry growers to delis, eateries specialising in wholefood and raw treats, authentic pizzerias, funky restaurants and artisan cafes.
Hamilton city’s restaurant scene is making a name for itself with top dining establishments, microbreweries and eateries offering delicious local fare, sourced from the freshest Waikato produce alongside a variety of internationally inspired cuisine. Cafes offer casual dining throughout the inner city and vibrant suburbs like Hamilton East, while the city’s fine dining restaurants boast an array of national accolades.
The fertile soil and mild climate in the Waikato means there are a number of orchards, berry growers and market gardens throughout the region so the best of fresh produce is never far away. What better way to sample these delights than by meeting the growers at one of the various farmers’ markets around the region.
Top 10 Coffee Spots
Over the past two decades, expert coffee roasters and baristas have sprung up across the region. Coffee culture spans over five decades in the Waikato, with Robert (Bob) Harris grinding & blending beans from Hamilton in the early days of Robert Harris Cafe. With a range of artisan coffee roasters calling the region home, and top baristas making delicious brews, there are several great spots to stop for a coffee in the Waikato region. Check out the top spots to grab your coffee fix in the Waikato.
Hamilton East Food Precinct
Home to the original Winner Winner and Duck Island Ice Cream’s flagship store, the main road of Hamilton East has exploded into an eclectic mix of funky restaurants, chic cafes and laid-back hangouts selling simple but delicious street eats.
Top Ice Cream Places
As to be expected from a region famous for its dairy farming, gourmet ice cream makers are gaining popularity with imaginative flavour combinations. Check out the top spots to grab a scoop of locally made ice cream, sorbet or gelato in the Waikato.