The alluvial basins of the Waikato, Waipā, Piako, Waitoa and Waihou rivers are the dominant landform in Waikato. Hill country separates the Waikato–Waipā lowland from the west coast. Smaller hills divide it from the Thames valley – the area drained by the Piako, Waitoa and Waihou rivers. In the south-east the region extends to the western edge of the Volcanic Plateau.
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