6 May 2021 | Written by Bachcare Holiday Homes

9 Things To Do In Bay Of Plenty

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Best Things To Do In Bay Of Plenty

New Zealand’s tropical Riviera awaits you on the Bay Of Plenty. Scenic mountains drop into crystal-clear azure seas. The drop-dead gorgeous coastline and marine sports are the biggest attractions here. You’ll find tons of things to do in Bay Of Plenty, with activities from hiking and exploring to surfing and kayaking.


1–Hike Mount Maunganui

things to do in the bay of plenty
Mount Maunganui From A Distance – Credit: Flickr

Mount Maunganui, or Mauao, is the Bay Of Plenty’s most recognized landmark. From the 232 meters tall peak, you can enjoy 360-degree views. This extinct volcano is a great place to hike, get some exercise, enjoy the views, and take panoramic photos.

Mauao can be translated as “caught by the dawn,” and it’s a popular place to hike for sunrise views. Hiking at sunrise can also be an excellent way to beat the heat.

There are two tracks to reach the summit, the Oruahine, and Waikorire. The Waikorire is steeper but has a few places to rest. The Oruhaine track offers fantastic views of Matakana Island and the ocean.

From the summit, you can enjoy views of the Bay Of Plenty’s stunning coastline. You’ll see Taurang’as suburbs, Matakana Island, and Waihi Beach.

For a more leisurely but still delightful trek, walk the three and a half kilometer base track. You’ll enjoy the white sand ocean beach and the calm waters of Pilot Bay. Refresh yourself after your walk with a cool drink at a cafe.


2–Explore Moutohora

Moutohora in the bay of plenty
Moutohora – Credit: Flickr

To enjoy one of the area’s most protected wildlife sanctuaries, take a guided tour of Moutohorā. Because the island is protected, only three operators are licensed to visit the island to ensure the island is conserved for all time.

You’ll take a boat ride out to the island and be immersed in this out-of-this-world locale. Keep your eyes peeled and ears open for various birdlife, including kākāriki, tui, and bellbirds.

Swim at Onepū (Sulphur Bay), a tranquil hot water beach. The water is heated naturally by geothermal forces. For something even more romantic, dig your own hot springs pool.


3–Visit Kaiate Falls

Kaiate Falls
Credit: Flickr

There’s nothing more spectacular than the natural beauty of a waterfall. It’s about a one-kilometer round trip to walk to Kaiate Falls (also called Rerekawau Falls). While it’s a short trek, it can be a bit steep in a few places. Kaiate Stream tumbles down in a series of nine gorgeous cascades. The upper cascade is stunning.

Adventurous visitors can have a refreshing swim at the base of the lower falls. Hiking to Kaiate Falls is a beautiful way to enjoy the serenity and natural beauty of the Bay Of Plenty region.


4–Explore Bay of Plenty By Bike

bay of plenty bike ride
Hauraki Rail Trail – Credit: Flickr

If you like biking, you’ll love exploring the Bay Of Plenty by bike. You’ll find urban trails through Tauranga, off-road trails, and nature trails. It’s an easy distance to get to several of New Zealand’s most incredible bike rides. The Te Ara Ahi, Motu Trail, and Hauraki Rail Trail are all nearby. In Tauranga, you can enjoy parks, city views, and wetlands. Start your day at the beach, go on a thrilling bike ride, and end at a delicious restaurant or head out for some shopping.


5–Craft Brewery Tour

If you’re looking to try something new and refreshing, try a self-guided craft brewery tour. The Bay Of Plenty has a host of unique and memorable craft breweries. You might want to stretch this tour out over you’re entire stay.

After you’ve climbed Mount Maunganui, or Mauao, stop by The Rising Tide Brewhouse and Eatery. The Rising Tide has a huge outdoor tap bar in the summer. With 39 craft beers on tap, you’ll have a hard time picking a favorite. The Rising Tide has a full kitchen, too, so you won’t go hungry.

In Whakatāne, try a tasting paddle at Mata Brewery and enjoy Hop Lips IPA, Hip Hop pilsner, and Mānuka Golden Ale.

In Tauranga, don’t miss the Barrel Room with 16 craft beers on tap.

If you want to check out all the area’s best craft breweries in one day while someone else drives, several tour operators are happy to be your designated driver and expert guide.


6–Learn to Surf Find the Perfect Break

bay of plenty ideas of things to do
Whakatane Heads – Credit: Flickr

Bay Of Plenty has over 125 kilometers of dreamy coastline. If you’re drawn to the sea, make your dreams come true with a surf lesson. The area’s beaches are made for surfing, and you’ll be hooked in no time.

If you’re an experienced surfer, grab your board and catch a wave. Arataki, near Tauranga, is a good break for beginners. Whakatane Heads is one of the most popular breaks in the region and can be crowded. More advanced riders will enjoy the thrill. Mount Manganui Main Beach is a great spot for beginners through experts.


7–Experience Marine and Wildlife on a Kayak Tour

kayak tour in the bay of plenty
Credit: Wikicommons

Enjoy the Bay of Plenty’s marine delights at your own pace in a kayak or SUP.

Join a glow worm kayak tour in Tauranga and enjoy a once-in-a-lifetime experience. As the sun sets, you’ll paddle into a glow worm canyon and be mesmerized by these only-in-New-Zealand creatures.

Join a coastal kayak tour, or rent a kayak and enjoy the coastline on your own. Kayakers might be treated to close encounters with rays, fish, and orcas. There are also various vendors on hand to offer stand-up paddleboard (SUP) lessons and adventures.


8–Marine Wildlife Boat Tour

Take a marine wildlife boat tour to get up close to the area’s marine mammals. Dolphins love to play in the boat’s bow waves and are sure to give you great entertainment and photo opportunities.

Marine wildlife boat tours take guests to habitats where frequent sightings of breathtaking marine mammals and marine wildlife are likely. You’ll have the chance to see orcas, pilot whales, humpback whales, blue penguins, and New Zealand fur seals.


9–Ōhope Beach and Ohiwa Harbour

bay of plenty things to do
Sunset at Ōhope Beach. Credit: Pixabay

Ōhope Beach is a gorgeous 11-kilometer white sand beach. It often boasts fantastic surfing conditions and overlooks Whale Island and White Island. It’s a great spot to view all sorts of seabirds. From West End on Ōhope Beach, you can walk to access Otarawairere Beach. This hidden beach is accessible only by kayak or foot.

Bring your binoculars and birding book to Ohiwa Harbour, separated by a sandbar from Ōhope Beach. If you have a kayak, you’ll be able to enjoy even more of Ohiwa Harbour. You can view bitterns, banded rails, oystercatchers, herons, gulls, and more.


Take Your Pick of Things to Do in Bay Of Plenty

The Bay Of Plenty region is a wonderful holiday destination, with a variety of activities to keep everyone in your family entertained. It feels a little like an exotic trip to a tropical island, too–and who can’t use a trip like that? Book your stay with Bachcare and get ready to explore Bay Of Plenty!

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