• Mt Maunganui, at last!

    Tauranga highlights - Moturiki Leisure Island, our rural Airbnb with views to Mt Maunganui and Kaiate Falls

    Moturiki Island, our rural Airbnb with views to Mt Maunganui and Kaiate Falls


    I’ve been saying for ages that it’s crazy that I’ve still never been to Mt Maunganui! Well, that got rectified over the Christmas break. Here are a few highlights from our whirlwind trip into the Bay of Plenty.


    From the award winning Gold Star Patrick’s Pies, that is. Lots of interesting flavour combinations there – but go early, the selection was a bit limited by the time we arrived late afternoon (damn Auckland-fleeing traffic).

    Mt Maunganui

    The Mount itself dominates the landscape all around – it’s THE icon of the region. We only walked as far as Pilot Bay … it was so freaking hot, we didn’t feel like climbing the whole thing and it was way later in the day than we expected given the traffic – maybe next time?

    Hot pools

    They’re not really our thing, but we had to try the famous Mt Maunganui salt water pools out. It was worth it to get a private pool room given that we didn’t plan to stay for ages as the price was only marginally higher.

    Moturiki Island

    Another wacky thing about the Mount – this little island you can walk to from the beach! Great vantage point for the views, and cute rabbits scampering around.

    Our countryside Airbnb

    We stayed in a rural rental just a short drive away. And yet it was like a whole different world – utterly silent at night, once the cows on nearby farms piped down, that is. The property was full of gardens and trees – the hosts were organic growers, who supplied fresh fruit, muffins and juice. It kinda┬ámade me want to retire to the countryside right now.

    Kaiate Falls

    Making up for the hike we didn’t do at the Mount! The thundering falls were an awesome sight as were the rocks where dozens or maybe even hundreds of people had carved their names.