New Zealand’s sunny Bay of Plenty region, at the Northern end of Tauranga Harbour is an amazing place to spend the long summer days with family and friends. We have identified the ‘must do’ attractions when visiting Athenree:
Whether it is a stroll along the 8km stretch of unspoilt white sand or making the most of New Zealand’s safest swimming beaches, you don’t want to miss visiting nearby Waihi Beach. It is a very popular destination for surfers, kayakers and kite boarders making the most of the waves.
At the north end of Waihi Beach, follow the track to cross the headland over to Orokawa Bay. Sit back and relax with a picnic under the overhanging Pohutukawa trees.
Bowentown sits at the southern end of Waihi Beach and is an ideal spot for swimming in the waves or enjoying a long walk. Keep an eye out for the endangered New Zealand Dotterels who build their nests amongst the sand dunes. At the end of the peninsula, you will come to the beautiful Anzac Bay. This sheltered bay is the perfect place to bring small children who want to swim in calmer water.
Katikati is a beautiful little town that is home to New Zealand’s largest outdoor galleries. Here you can find dozens of colourful murals, sculptures and carvings depicting the history of the town’s early Maori residents and the farming heritage.
Make sure to check out the largest collection of haiku ‘stones’ outside of japan and the only haiku pathway in the southern hemisphere.
Athenree is a small coastal settlement on the edge of Shelly Bay in Tauranga’s inner harbour only minutes’ from both Waihi Beach and Bowentown. The fully refurbished Athenree homestead, built in 1978, is the only homestead of its kind left in New Zealand. Nestled on a 2.5 hectare site the property enjoys views overlooking Tauranga Harbour and the stunning countryside. The building plays a huge role in the early Irish settlements in the area and now offers visitors the chance to learn the history, wander the gardens or enjoy a light snack from the on-site café.
If you are looking for accommodation for your stay in the area, consider booking at Athenree Hot Springs and Holiday park. With its central location, you are ideally located to explore the stunning region. After a busy day checking out the sites, you can head back and relax in the hot mineral pools or have dinner under the mature Puriri trees.
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