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Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Travel: Time Travelling in Hamilton

Vintage Cars at the Hamilton Classics Museum New Zealand Review
See more of our New Zealand Adventures & other travels here!

Hold onto your hats, friends - today we're heading back in time on a retro-inspired adventure as she share the next part of our New Zealand travels with you!

So let's jump right into it! >>

1960's Diner at the Hamilton Classics Museum New Zealand Review

This day was a surprise for Jesse as he had no clue what I had planned. We'd gotten up that morning in Te Aroha and whilst Jesse knew we were heading to Hamilton for the next part of our trip, he had no idea what we'd be doing. 

I popped the address into our GPS and Jesse followed Tom (our TomTom) as he instructed which turns to take. Before long, we arrived at the Hamilton Classics Museum and Jesse still had no idea what we were doing. 

"Er... you're taking me to a diner? Is it a gluten free one? You should have told me, I wouldn't have eaten breakfast!". 

1960's Style Diner at the Hamilton Classics Museum New Zealand Review

But whilst we were in a diner, that wasn't my plan for the day. You see, Jesse is your typical guy who loves anything to do with cars and gadgets - and through a set of double doors just to the left of the diner was a car lover's paradise. 

Vintage Cars at the Hamilton Classics Museum New Zealand Review

Visiting The Classics Museum really is like taking a step back in time. Their collection includes everything from an incredible range of vintage cars right through to petrol memorabilia, toys, pedal cars, pinball machines and so much more. 

The staff of the Jukebox Diner dress in the 50's style diner dress and aprons and with menu items like banana splits and a giant Betty Boop greeting you at the door, you'll feel like you're in the 50's too!

Vintage Cars at the Hamilton Classics Museum New Zealand Review

Whilst you can't sit in the cars (except the one above), there is heaps to look at and two levels to explore. 

Vintage Cars at the Hamilton Classics Museum New Zealand Review

There's everything from a retro schoolbus and amphicar (that is a car that drives on land and acts like a boat in the water)  to teeny tiny motocars and even a camper van - decked out with everything a family would need for a motorhome vacation in 1950!

Vintage Cars at the Hamilton Classics Museum New Zealand Review

After spending the morning browsing and having Jesse drool all over the hundreds of cars inside, we headed off to our next destination!

Waikato River Explorer at Hamilton Gardens New Zealand

We had the day to spend in Hamilton and decided we'd head to check out the famous Hamilton Gardens. Apparently the weather had other ideas as, just a few moments after we took this photo, rain came TEAMING down out of the sky and a casual stroll around the gardens may as well have been a swim! 

Waikato River Explorer at Hamilton Gardens New Zealand

Luckily, there was one thing we could do at Hamilton Gardens which would allow us to soak up the sights without soaking ourselves! 

We headed out on the Waikato River Explorer Cruise, a one hour boat cruise which departs from the Hamilton Gardens River Jetty three times daily.

Waikato River Explorer at Hamilton Gardens New Zealand

The boat has a fully licensed cafe on board with a menu including everything from light snacks to delicious lunches with paninis, nachos, salads and homemade muffins on offer. There's also commentary that runs throughout, explaining what you're seeing and sharing the secrets and stories of the area. 

Even though the weather was pretty woeful, we were warm and dry with a delicious latte in hand and it ended up being the perfect way to spend our afternoon. A cruisy (pardon the pun!) day was just what we needed before the next days adventures.... next we were heading to Middle Earth for a day jam packed full of Hobbit-y fun - but I'll have to tell you about that in our next post! 

So tell me, are you a car fan? 
What's your favourite rainy day activity?
I haven't got the slightest clue when it comes to cars (except that I like red cars and shiny things... not blacked out wheels like Jesse seems to like) and when it's cold and rainy, I love nothing more than cozying up for a day of board games or movies - or heading out on an adventure that's out of the weather (like this boat trip!).


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