Learn a little bit about the town's mining history by visiting the Waikato Coalfield Museum, which is housed in a building that’s over 120 years old. Once you've discovered the town's heritage, it's time to head out into the great outdoors. First stop: Lake Puketerini, where you can sail, kayak or water ski. If you love the lazy lake atmosphere, you're in luck – there's another one in town! Head to Lake Hakanoa, where there are pretty gardens and plenty of walkways. If you're a keen walker, hit the Hakarimata Walkway, where you'll see waterfalls, streams and lots of Kauri trees. The entire walk takes about eight hours, so make sure you pack some lunch. You can pick up some baked goods from one of the local bakeries or cafes before you set off on your walk. On the other hand, if you want to pick up the pace a bit and you're here in May, you could join in on the local half marathon. It's been running since 1981 and is considered to be the best one in New Zealand. There are also shorter races if you're not quite in shape for the main event. The half marathon isn't the only popular sports event in town, though. The Huntly Speedway regularly hosts exciting racing events. Check the events calendar and try to attend a race – they're exhilarating.
Huntly is part of the Waikato region, which means that you can sit on the banks of the Waikato River, New Zealand's longest river, while you're in town. Have a picnic, take a walk or just snap some photos of the mighty mass of water. Another iconic landmark in the area is Taupiri Mountain, where many Maori leaders are buried. Climb to the top of the mountain for some amazing panoramic views of the region.
Being a fairly small town, there isn't much here in the way of shops. There are general stores, but if you want to do some hardcore shopping, you're probably best off taking a trip to Auckland. It's only 93km away, so you can catch a coach bus there, or hire a car and drive. You could fly into Auckland, but you'll probably find that these flights to Hamilton are more convenient, as the airport is only 32km from Huntly. While you're in Hamilton, make sure that you visit the Hamilton Zoo and Hamilton Gardens.
So wot are you waiting for? Book your Huntly accommodation and get ready for a power-packed holiday surrounded by natural beauty.
Hotels in Huntly start at NZ$80 per night. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.