If you’re looking for a quiet spot to swim and relax, Athenree Beach offers a peaceful alternative to surf and sand.
This small coastal settlement sits right on the edge of Shelly Bay in Tauranga’s inner harbour and overlooks an estuary which runs for several kilometres inland.
If you drive through this township you’ll come across a large grass reserve opposite the Athenree Hot Springs and Holiday Park.
Find a suitable parking spot on the grass and fire up the free public barbeque while your kids play on the well-equipped playground. There’s plenty of space here to kick a ball around or have a game of cricket. Enjoy a picnic and relax in the sunshine.
A small boat ramp sits by the water’s edge and the grass slopes gently down towards the water. When the tide is in, you can enjoy swimming in the warm shallow water here. At low tide it’s possible to walk right across the estuary (which is only 100m or so wide) to Waihi Beach and Bowentown.
Pohutukawa trees and Norfolk Pines fringe the edges of Athenree’s shoreline. Enjoy a walk or have a seat on a park bench beneath them and admire the view.