Location Guide - Bay of Plenty, New Zealand
The Bay of Plenty area has long been a popular visitor destination, enjoying a subtropical climate with warm summers and mild winters, and experiencing at least 2,000 hours of sunshine annually. The region is ideally situated for accessibility, being less than an hours drive to Rotorua, and less than three hours to Auckland, Hawkes Bay, Gisborne, Hamilton and Taupo. There are two regional airports and numerous direct daily flights to and from Auckland, Wellington, and Christchurch. The population is around 260,000, the 5th highest out of New Zealand’s 16 regions. The region stretches approximately 60 miles along the coastline from Waihi in the north to Te Puke in the south and about 20 miles inland to the rugged, bush covered Kaimai Ranges.
Living in the Bay of Plenty
The Bay of Plenty is one of New Zealand’s most unique and varied regions. Here,
you can experience everything from lush native forests and waterfalls to spectacular
beaches and even an active island volcano. Beach lovers flock to Mount Maunganui and Ohope, where white-sand coastline meets rolling ocean waves. For those fascinated by lush forests and waterfalls, head to the Kaimai Mamaku Forest Park – home to over 300km of walking tracks. White Island is the region’s active volcano, situated off the coast of Whakatane. The volcanic activity is generally limited to steaming vents, and can be visited via helicopter depending on the status of the current volcanic situation.
The sunny climate and easy-going atmosphere of the Bay Of Plenty lends itself to excellent dining and great cuisine. Because of the widespread agricultural base in the Bay Of Plenty, you can expect fresh food from both land and sea, and some of the finest wines in New Zealand. The Bay Of Plenty remains steeped in Maori culture and tradition, so you can take your time in exploring the history of the indigenous people of this land – be it taking in their local food, discovering the skills behind their arts and crafts, or simply by immersing yourself in Maori culture. The region boasts strong horticultural and agricultural sectors and is renowned for growing kiwifruit, avocados, grapes, citrus and other subtropical fruits. Over 80% of New Zealand’s kiwifruit exports are grown in the Bay of Plenty.
Tauranga and Mount Maunganui are the Bay of Plenty’s two main cities, both located two and a half hours drive from Auckland and Rotorua. Tauranga is the sixth-largest city in New Zealand, but it is expected to grow to be the fourth largest within the next five years. It is also home to New Zealand’s largest port, making it one of the country’s key transportation, logistics, warehousing and manufacturing hubs. Located five minutes from downtown Tauranga is the amazing Mount Maunganui. Renowned for its Maori history and pristine walking tracks, the Mount offers magnificent views from its 232m summit.
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