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Family Friendly

The Bay of Plenty is an easy place to entertain kids. Swim at the beach, explore Mauao’s base track, visit Tauranga’s Hairy Maclary sculptures, discover hidden waterfalls, grab an ice-cream and enjoy the many playgrounds, parks and cafes.

Are you looking for a holiday destination the whole family can enjoy? The coastal Bay of Plenty is a brilliant place to bring children of all ages, with lots of fun activities and ways to spend time together.


Most kids love the water and there’s no shortage of that here. Swim at our fantastic local beaches or sign budding surfers up for their very first lesson at the Mount’s Hibiscus Surf School.

Soak in the Hot Salt Water Pools at the base of Mauao where your little ones will have their very own toddler pool and slide. Or take the whole family out to sea with Dolphin Seafaris. Kids aged 7 years and over can swim alongside these magnificent creatures and you can all have fun spotting orcas, turtles, seals, humpback and pilot whales along the way.

You can easily spend an entire day at Waimarino Adventure Park on the banks of Tauranga’s Wairoa River. Hire kayaks; bounce on ‘the blob’ and water trampoline; tackle the climbing wall, low ropes course or gladiator pole; and enjoy a picnic or barbeque lunch.

City kids will love visiting Marshalls Animal Park at McLaren Falls. Stop at the bridge and admire the waterfall on your way past. Or let them burn off some energy climbing The Rock House walls or bouncing around the Dialled Indoor Tramp park at Mount Maunganui.

There are plenty of free activities to enjoy together also. Walk the stunning 3.4km base track around our iconic mountain, Mauao, and reward yourself with an ice-cream on the beach afterwards. Visit our best playgrounds at Mt Drury Reserve, Memorial Park and along The Strand on Tauranga’s waterfront. Here you’ll find Hairy Maclary and friends immortalized in bronze. These sculptures are big enough for your kids to climb all over their favourite storybook character – a great place to take some family photos.

If you like to stay active, bring your bikes and cycle the urban trails around our biggest city. Or try land sailing at Blokart Heaven in Papamoa and race each other around the purpose-built track as fast as the wind can blow you! Electric drift karts are now available here and both activities are suitable for anyone aged 8 years and over.

Teach your kids about our environment by visiting Kiwi360 and Comvita where you will learn plenty of fun facts about kiwifruit, manuka honey and honeybees. Or give them a spine-tingling cultural lesson at Mataatua – New Zealand’s most well-travelled Maori meeting house which has returned home to Whakatane.

There are plenty of family-friendly cafes and restaurants to choose from throughout our region, and accommodation to keep everyone happy. Waihi Beach and Ohope have two of the best Top 10 holiday parks you will find anywhere in the country, with extensive playgrounds, swimming pools, hydroslides and hot pools on offer. Or stay at the famous Papamoa Beach Resort where you can pitch a tent or book a luxury beachfront villa.
Here in the Bay of Plenty you can enjoy a family holiday that you and your children will always remember.

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Julians Berry Farm & Cafe


Julians Berry Farm and Cafe offers a unique New Zealand experience, and regarded as one of New Zealands hidden treasures. Something for everyone at this award winning attraction.

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Blueberry Corner


Experience our 'famous' natural fruit ice-creams along with the freshest berries you have ever eaten straight from the orchard, enjoy berry baking while you sit amongst our fully operating berry orchard.

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KG Kayaks


Kayaking adventures for independent travellers, family groups, businesses and schools. We offer guided tours, hires and tuition at a number of locations around Whakatane in the Bay of Plenty.

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