The Waikato is a region in the upper-north of the North Island. The main centres in the region are Hamilton, Taupo, Cambridge, Te Awamutu and Tokoroa. Waikato is renowned for its green plains that make for world class dairy farming, and a perfect location to set The Shire in the Lord of the Rings. Hobbiton sees more than 1 million visitors through its doors to see the famous film set. Cathedral Cove is another famous film set in Waikato, where blockbuster Narnia was filmed.

The region's economy is primarily based on agriculture, especially dairy. The region has a booming services industry facilitated by the region's close proximity to Auckland.

Key Information
Population 449,200
Employment rate 66.3%
GDP Per Capita $47,119
Average Weekly Rent $338