Studying in the Waikato is one of the wisest choices you’ll make. Located in the heart of Aotearoa New Zealand, this vibrant region with its cultural diversity and laid-back lifestyle offers a range of options to suit every personality and learning path.
There’s an excellent range of schools, a world-ranked university and highly regarded technical institute in a safe, welcoming environment. Outside the classroom you can take part in sport, cultural activities and take your pick from surf beaches, mountains and cycle paths. Or if you want to relax, there are many cafes, bars shopping centres and restaurants.
Welcome to the Waikato!
When you’re living in a foreign country you still need a place to call home. The Waikato has the perfect accommodation options to make everyone feel safe and welcome. The University and Wintec offer excellent on campus accommodation, while some of the schools include boarding options and there are many homestay opportunities where you can live with a local family.
Wherever you live, you will be in a truly safe and inclusive place, while you enjoy the welcoming community and all the good things our beautiful region has to offer. All of our international education providers adhere to the New Zealand Government’s Pastoral Care Code of Practice to ensure international students are well cared for.
You can also enjoy a great social life, meet new friends and visit the huge range of cafes, restaurants, shops and bars.
You can get around your new home and its surrounding suburbs on public transport. Hamilton is a great city for walking and cycling. Or, if you prefer the bus your student ID might help you save money on fares. There is also a regular train service between Hamilton and Auckland to make it easy for you to explore New Zealand’s biggest city.
When you’re looking for some time out, there’s an amazing range of activities in easy driving distance. If you’re a keen surfer or want to learn, the best left-hand break in the world is always pumping at Raglan, just 45 minutes from Hamilton and the white sand beaches of the Coromandel are just a couple of hours away. If you enjoy winter skiing, some of Aotearoa New Zealand’s favourite ski-fields are 3 hours away.
On your way home you can stop in Taupō for a relaxing swim in one of the hot pools while marveling at the largest freshwater lake in Australasia. There are bush walks among the local forests, mountains and reserves, spectacular cycling trails, the world famous Waitomo caves, great fishing spots and many opportunities for the adventurers to get plenty of adrenalin.
Among the green pastures of Matamata, you’ll find Middle Earth™, a location where some of the Lord of the Rings was filmed and now home to the world famous Hobbiton Movie Set. A must see for everyone!
Along with a wealth of nature-based activities, there are all the events and attractions you’d expect to enjoy in a bustling, vibrant city. There are a myriad of sports, arts and culture groups to join, or you can spend your day at the large shopping centres, visit a night market, or dine at a restaurant next to the river in Hamilton City.
There’s so much more on offer, so many places to explore. You’ll never be short of places to see and things to discover. Along the way, you will definitely meet some new and interesting people and make some lifelong friends.
What really sets the Waikato apart is its people. Being in the cultural heart of Aotearoa New Zealand means your experience will be enriched by opportunities to learn about tikanga Māori (our indigenous custom and values) and its place in our past, present and future.
Waikato is also home to a melting pot of cultures from all corners of the world, in fact, one in five people living in the Waikato were born overseas. Chances are you’ll find your favourite dish, hear a familiar language and make new friends and learn about other cultures. The diversity is reflected in the local arts, festivals, music and food.
You’ll love the people of the Waikato.
While you’re studying in the Waikato you’ll get plenty of opportunities to connect with industry and start building contacts for when you enter the workforce. A wide range of Waikato businesses offer part time, casual, work experience or internships, and are usually happy to hire international students. These jobs often have flexible hours that can be scheduled around class times.
Our education providers are well connected to all sectors of industry and many offer workplace-based experience as part of their study programmes. The practical skills you gain and the contacts you make will give you a head start as you get ready for the next stage of your life’s journey.
Underneath the laid-back attitude and humble confidence of the Waikato region, there’s an amazing and diverse economy. The Waikato’s green pastures feed the farms and cows that make us one of the largest dairy producing regions in the world; Aotearoa New Zealand sends more than 1,620,000 tonnes of milk powder overseas every year. This supports a wide range of businesses from processing to professional services.
The Waikato is also gaining a reputation as a tech-smart hub with a wide range of businesses and start-ups making it their home. Nearly 60% of the agritech jobs in Aotearoa New Zealand are based in the Waikato. Waikato is leading the way in Artificial Intelligence (AI), machine learning and deep learning, encouraged by the creation of the Artificial Intelligence Institute at the University of Waikato, home to the country’s most powerful supercomputer dedicated to machine learning. Being in the centre of Aotearoa New Zealand’s heartland with such a strong, future-focused economy means this is a great place to start your career.