Mount Maunganui - PHOTOGRAPHER COMMENT
A panorama taken form the top of Mt Maunganui, the best place to see the lay of the town by the same name to the south as well as appreciate the unique coastline and see Matakana Island.
Mount Maunganui - FURTHER INFORMATION
Mount Maunganui - Mount Maunganui visitor guide showing a virtual tour of 'Mount Maunganui' linked to an interactive map with local and travel information. 360° panoramas from Bay of Plenty.
Mount Mauganui is both a holiday resort and a volcano in the Bay of Plenty region of New Zealand, close to Tuaranga. The holiday resort is built on a sand spit that links the volcano to the mainland, lined with sandy beaches on the ocean side and forming a protected bay on the other. This panorama was taken from the top of the volcano and shows the view south over the resort town as well as the surrounding coastline to the north.
Mount Maunganui - Town
As a resort town, Mount Maunganui is a very popular tourist destination, within easy reach of Auckland. The area has long sandy beaches, a protected bay and good walks. It is very popular for surfing, though the seas can be dangerous, and for boating. as a result, the small land area at the base of the Mount Maunganui volcano has been totally developed with hotels, condos and other forms of holiday accommodation, lined with various tourist shops, bars and restaurants. On one side rolling waves from the ocean crash onto open sandy beaches, on the other Pilot Bay is protected and the water is quite calm.
The area is so popular with surfers that an artificial reef has been created to try to produce more surf. This may have backfired, as the project ran vastly over budget, has not produced the surf expected and has been blamed for creating new rip tides in the area.
Mount Maunganui - Volcano
Mount Maunganui volcano is extinct. It is 232m high and has the remains of a Māori 'pa' (Māori village) on the summit. Some of the village trenches are still visible. The Māori name for the volcano is Mauao, and according to legend it was a slave (pononga) to a mountain called Otanewainuku. Many locals simply call it 'The Mount'.
The volcano is now part of the Mount Mauao Reserve and offers fantastic panoramic views over the surrounding area. The park is open to the public and there are two walks up the volcano. One climbs steeply up the southern side through woods along a stepped path. Views along this route are limited, but gives a good view back over the town from the summit.
The other, longer, route starts at the base walk on the eastern side of the spit and then follows a curved dirt track up the hill. This provides great views over the surrounding coastline which unfolds slowly with every step. Most prominent is the southern tip of Matakana Island, which is 20km long and covers much of the bay. The island is another popular destination for surfers who flock to the seaward side. All the water in the bay must flow through narrow channels on either end of the island with the changing tides. This can create standing, breaking waves in the channel whose noise is heard high up the hill. The island is a nesting ground for the New Zealand dotterel and sting rays are common in the waters.