Despite having spent over a year in New Zealand, despite all my Kiwi and foreign friends telling me I should go, I had never been to Tauranga and Mount Maunganui. I just didn’t have the time to get out of Auckland, and the drive is almost three hours long. So, when I heard about Labour Day, I thought it was the perfect opportunity for a three-day trip around the Bay of Plenty… and I finally made it to the Mount Mauganui summit!
So what is Mount Maunganui?
Mount Maunganui is a city right next to Tauranga, in the Bay of Plenty (Upper East of the North Island), named for the mountain that overlooks this coastal city and harbour. My friends and I arrived around noon. After a short walk on the beach side, we ordered smoothies before going to the summit. The sun was out and sunscreen was needed. After 40 minutes with great scenery, sheep and lambs around us, we finally reached the top!
Whilst only 230 metres high, I know it’s not that big of a deal, but still a nice walk. What I loved about Mount Maunganui is that the view on the way up to the summit is lovely. I’ve had many hikes and some of them are great but frustrating, as there’s sometimes only one unique lookout. Plus, this hike is great in summer: it’s only an hour walk overall. You can then go to the beach, have a swim (it’s cold, though, don’t say I didn’t warn you) and then have lunch in one of the multiple restaurants along the beach. It’s the perfect spot for brunch on a Sunday!
Finally, walking around is very nice and won’t take you longer than an hour or two. The difference between the two beach sides, one being the harbour full of fishing boats, the other one being a proper beach, makes Mount Maunganui a great location and definitely a place to go if you want to visit the North Island.