Itinerary builder

Bay of Plenty

From its white sandy beaches to the geothermal treasures of Rotorua, Bay of Plenty is a sun-soaked playground. At its heart is the thriving port city of Tauranga and only a short drive away is the iconic Mauao and the beaches of Mount Maunganui. Explore a little further along this coastline and you'll discover forgotten beaches and hidden bays. In and around Tauranga you'll find a network of urban cycle trails that offer some of the best commuting links and family friendly trails in the region. Venture a little deeper and you'll find some quality trail networks and cycle trails for the more adventurous.

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Mount Maunganui was recently voted as New Zealand's best beach. Photo: Tourism BOP

The popular beach resort of Mount Maunganui and the city of Tauranga are within easy striking distance of three of the Great Rides; Hauraki Rail Trail, Motu Trail and Te Ara Ahi, and within an hour's drive of the mountain biking mecca of Rotorua. This makes it the perfect base for those looking for a beach and riding experience – surf all morning, ride all afternoon and explore the many restaurants and bars each evening.

Tauranga has more than 60km of family friendly predominantly off-road urban trails that sew the city together. There are urban trails and cycling experiences to suit the whole family – the perfect introduction for those just getting into mountain biking or cycling. Explore the urban wetlands, parks and cityscapes from the comfort of an off-road, easy grade trail. You can even start and finish your ride in the comfort of one of the trail side cafés. If you're after a bit more adrenaline, then spend a day or two exploring Oropi Mountain Bike Park just 15 minutes' drive from the Tauranga.

The coastal Bay of Plenty is located along the pristine Pacific Coast Highway and takes in 125km of white sandy beaches. Stretching from Waihi Beach to New Zealand’s best-kept secret Ohope, the region offers a mix of outdoor activities, scenic attractions, culture and top dining experiences.

For the ladies, experience beach to boutique with thriving café culture and boutique shopping in Mount Maunganui, or relax at the Mount Hot Salt Water Pools at the base of Mauao – the landmark mountain that is enriched with profound history and Maori culture. You can even ride from the cosmopolitan Tauranga City Centre to Bayfair Shopping Mall, located at the end of the Matapihi Rail Trail.

The Bay of Plenty is renowned for its abundance of fresh produce and seafood. With vibrant cafes, restaurants and artisan food producers showcasing the local cuisine, there are plenty of dining options to tempt taste buds. Enjoy weekly artisan food markets held in the summer months between November and March. Explore the home of New Zealand’s kiwifruit, avocado and manuka honey industries, all of which are prized for their remarkable health benefits.

Nightlife thrives here, with a selection of energetic bars and plethora of restaurants located on the Strand in the heart of the city centre. Stay at accommodation over and above the water, a short waterfront stroll away from the hustle and bustle of the city.

The Bay of Plenty offers some of New Zealand’s most spectacular scenery and natural wonders including White Island, New Zealand’s only active marine volcano. Feel the power of nature rumble beneath your feet whilst staring into the bubbling crater. Stay in cultural hub, Whakatane township, at bike-friendly accommodation, perfect for couples or groups. Kayak through enchanting glow worm caves or enjoy a guided walk through native bush. Visit wildlife sanctuaries on the land or at sea and relax at the private hot water beach on Moutohora (Whale) Island. Play at one of the Bay of Plenty’s nationally recognised golf courses with the Pacific Ocean providing a flawless backdrop or explore the expansive coastline popular for marine life, fishing, diving and boating. There’s Plenty for those with a serious case of wanderlust here.

Explore some of the Bay of Plenty's fun trails.

Trails in this Region