Families in Tauranga are so unbelievably lucky to be surrounded by such beautiful natural landscapes that it would be a shame to not get out amongst it. Cityscapes, beaches and parklands can all be enjoyed on a nice long walk. Here are some of our favourites.
Up & around the Mount
The most iconic Tauranga walk is around and up Mount Maunganui. If you have a pram, then going around the Mount is probably the best option for you. It is a little off the beaten track in some places, so a sturdy pram is probably best. But the kids will love this walk. Keep an eye out for local seals who often laze around on the rocks in the sun.
If you have older kids who can walk on their own, or if you are happy carrying a child, then going to the summit of the Mount will be okay for you. Here’s a recommendation though: use the easier walkway, which is by the Pilot Bay entrance to the walk, and not the tougher way which is the main track from Mt Maunganui beach.
Also known as Leisure Island, Moturiki Island has had many past lives: a Maori settlement, an aquarium, and a waterpark. But now, a beautiful, short walk to the end of the island gives stunning views of the Mount and out to the Pacific Ocean, and is perfect for dolphin, whale and seal spotting, not to mention exploring the rock pools. Better suited to children who can walk on their own, this walk probably isn’t one to do if you have a pram as there are some stairs and hills.
There’s plenty of coastline to enjoy and the best way to explore it is on foot. Try Pilot Bay for a short leisurely walk along the boardwalk as it’s perfect for young families with prams. Mt Maunganui Beach, Tay Street Beach and Papamoa Beach are all along the coastline and are equally beautiful. Note that the further you get away from Mt Maunganui Beach, the quieter it will be.
Tauranga City Centre is a great place to go for a walk, and perfect if you have a pram. The Strand Boardwalk is completely paved, and perfect for bikes and scooters if walking isn’t cool enough for your kids. But once the walking is done, there is an awesome playground to play on, water steps to access the estuary, and the best part is the Hairy Maclary sculptures, which bring to life the classic children’s book characters.
McLaren Falls Park
McLaren Falls Park is 190 hectares of parkland surrounding Lake McLaren making it the perfect destination for a walk.