Bay of Plenty
Sunshine, sand and surf are ubiquitous in the Bay of Plenty, where a sweeping arc of golden beaches is the region’s major drawcard.
Hot spots Mount Maunganui and Waihi Beach are becoming crowded with sun-seekers during the summer months, but those who like a little more space around their beach towel head for the long stretch of pohutukawa-lined coast further south, which is quieter and often overlooked.
Daring types take a helicopter out to White Island, where they tread the surface of a live, hissing volcano; the less-daring experience that same geothermal activity via hot pools at Awakeri. Nature-lovers enjoy dolphin watching, bushwalks and snorkelling and historians check out some of the many significant Maori pa sites along the coast.
This is the best region to buy apples and kiwifruit
Bay of Plenty essentials
- Catch a wave at Waihi
- See glow-worms by kayak at MacLaren Falls
- Ride a blokart along Papamoa Beach