Places to Visit in New Zealand – Tauranga & Mt Maunganui

by Mark Perkins

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One of the great things about taking a campervan holiday in New Zealand is the fact that you can visit some of the awesome cities and towns that New Zealand has to offer that you don’t always get on organised tours.

My work sent me off to Tauranga this week as I was meeting a group of Swiss travellers who have been sailing on the Diamond Princess. We arrived just as

she was docking and it was very interesting watching this magnificent vessel slowly edge it’s way into position. Now you do know why they call ships “A she or Girls..” because they tie up to “buoys…” Oh well a bit of schoolboy humour.. Probably just showing my age. The cruise ships are a very regular sight in New Zealand waters, with approx 80-100 vessels visiting us during the summer season.

There are two main areas to Tauranga, there is Tauranga itself which is the city centre and has the major housing base and then there is Mt Maunganui which is a peninsular with the mountain right at the end of it. One side of the peninsular is very placid with a large proportion taken up by the wharf. There is also a beautiful, extremely safe swimming beach called Pilot Bay. On the eastern side you have the surf beach. Mt Maunganui, or the Mount, as it is referred to, it is always a hive of activity especially during the summer months and is one of those places that attracts a lot of attention on New Years eve.

Mt Maunganui New Zealand

The Mounts shopping area consists of 1 main street and centres primarily around sun, surf and fun. You are able to walk all the way around the base of the mount and climb quite a way up it. It is also a popular fishing spot.

Nearby to the Mount itself, is a camping ground and a thermal pool complex. Tauranga harbour, especially the upper reaches is extremely tidal. When the tide is in it is an awesome place and really gives you that seaside holiday feeling.

Of all the other cities in New Zealand besides Auckland, this is one city I would love to live in. There are a number of campsites, in and around Tauranga/Mt Maunganui, ideal for stopping over at on your campervan holiday in New Zealand.

Tauranga New Zealand

A little further down the coast is Papamoa, another idyllic holiday spot and well know for the Top10 Holiday park there.

Tauranga, Mt Maunganui, Papamoa and Te Puke are all located in what is known as the Bay of Plenty. I always think of this area as “The Bay of Plenty for Sun and Things to do”.

So when venturing down this way on your campervan holiday of New Zealand be sure to explore all the awesome places and things that the Bay of Plenty has to offer, including the “Golden Kiwifruit” the best one! Bay of Plenty is renowned for its Kiwifruit orchards and Avocado groves. Have fun and check back for more information on this region.

{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

oregon surf January 31, 2011 at 11:20 am

Good practical info – thanks.

Gunawan August 26, 2012 at 5:38 pm

Wow! You have some great photos!I was wondering if you could recommend me to any good locations for taking photos of the night sky in Auckland? (near Auckland)It’s hard to find a place with not a lot of light pollution.Thanks!

Mark Perkins August 29, 2012 at 10:48 am

Very hard to find light pollution free areas in the city. Perhaps head North to areas like Walkworth or south to the Waikato district, both are only about an hours drive.

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