Flights to Tauranga
Tauranga is a relaxed city close to a vast white sand surf beach, plenty of locally-grown food, all kinds of adventures and guided trips on an active marine volcano.
Things to do in Tauranga
If you like white sandy beaches, you'll love the city of Tauranga. Whether you're a surfer, swimmer, walker or sunbather, you'll find plenty of room to do your thing. The ocean beach stretches around the Bay of Plenty for more than 100km from Tauranga to Whakatane and beyond.
In the middle of the Bay of Plenty, 42km out to sea from Whakatane, is New Zealand’s most active volcano - Whakaari/White Island.
Most of Tauranga's seaside action is near Mauao/Mount Maunganui, an ancient 230m tall lava dome that guards the entrance to Tauranga Harbour. Clad in regenerating forest, 'the Mount' is open to the public every day. There's a beautiful 45-minute base walk or you can hike to the summit for long range views along the coast and inland to the Kaimai Ranges.
The main street at the Mount is dotted with cafes and bars that have a relaxed seaside or surfing vibe. The Bay of Plenty has a long history of farming, fruit growing and fishing, so you’ll find plenty of deliciously fresh flavours to explore.
In the middle of the Bay of Plenty, 42km out to sea from Whakatane, you can visit New Zealand's most active volcano, Whakaari/White Island. Transport from Tauranga connects with the daily boat trip to the island, which includes stepping ashore with guides to explore the active crater. In the living, breathing heart of the volcano you'll discover roaring steam vents, hot streams, vast sulphur formations and an acid lake. Gas masks and hard hats are provided and bookings are essential.
For a day away from the ocean, head 20 minutes inland to McLaren Falls Park, a popular spot for camping, kayaking, picnics and bush walks. There's a wide range of walking tracks, a great collection of exotic trees, places to swim and after dusk you'll be treated to a fairyland of glow worms on the Waterfall Track. Bring your walking shoes, swim gear and a torch.
If you're travelling with children, Marshalls Animal Park alongside McLaren Falls is a must. Apart from an outdoor playground and picnic area, there are easy walks that lead to all sorts of tame animals roaming free. The smaller ones can be cuddled and nearly all of them are up for a feed. Get ready for well-managed close encounters with emus, ostriches, sheep, pigs, goats, deer, horses and more.
Best time to go
Tauranga, Mount Maunganui and the wider Bay of Plenty make up one of the sunniest regions in New Zealand. Daily maximum temperatures are around 23°C in summer and 15°C in winter. Many of New Zealand's best beaches are in this area, so it can be really busy in summer. Spring and autumn are a good idea if you want to avoid crowds. Winter often produces beautiful blue sky days.
How much will it cost?
Not including air travel and hotels, you should allow about NZD $100 to $150 a day per person for food and entertainment.
There are no mandatory vaccinations required for visitors to New Zealand.
*Flight times are based on the fastest route available.
** Indirect flights may also be available for this route.
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