A few weeks ago, we took a trip to Mount Maunganui in Tauranga for a a mini-holiday. Although I only had a few days off work, it was a much needed break. We went the week before Easter because we thought it would be less busy. Unfortunately, the weather wasn’t the greatest but we still made the best of it.
I’ll share what we got up to and the food we tried down below so if you’re thinking of heading to the Mount any time soon, this post may give you some ideas.
This was a last-minute trip and we didn’t really have specific plans in mind. We picked the Mount because it wasn’t a far drive from Auckland. We went on a Thursday so there wasn’t much traffic. It took us around 2 hours from Auckland.
Here are some of the things we did:
1. Walk to the top of the Mount
The main and unmissable feature at Mount Maunganui is The Mount itself. It is an extinct volcano cone and there are two ways to explore it. You can walk around the mount or you can walk to the top which is what we did. If you’re after a leisurely walk, I suggest just going around but if you’re up for a challenge then definitely climb up the top.
I can’t remember how long it took us to climb up to the top but it felt like forever. Mind you, I’m really unfit so the climb uphill was not a pleasurable one. I’m also glad I didn’t bring a bag or my heavy slr camera because that would’ve slowed me down even more.
When we reached the top, the view was amazing though. We had a view of town and the main beach area and it was beautiful.
We took a different route going down too and it was a scenic one. We were close to the cliff and thankfully I’m not afraid of heights.
The walk down was definitely much more enjoyable than the climb up.
2. Walk along the beach:
If you’re not up for a steep climb, walking along the beach is also nice.
There weren’t a lot of people so it was nice and peaceful.
3. Drive to Papamoa
Papamoa is a close town to Mount Maunganui so we drove there on our first night and we grabbed some dinner there too.
We got kebabs from Turkish To Go and they were so good! We ate it by the beach and it was great. The kebabs were huge, cheap and had so much filling. We both recommend it and we saw a few branches in Tauranga and back in Mount Maunganui too.
4. Walk around town
The town isn’t big but there are a few interesting shops. One of them is Paper Plane which is a gorgeous store full of home decor and other home stuff.
Another one is Sisters & Co which is right in the corner. It has amazing brands such as Karen Walker, Alexander Wang, Rag & Bone etc.
4. Gelato by the beach from Monte Gelato
I can’t go on a trip and not have gelato. Gelato is one of my favourite food in the world and I couldn’t resist when I saw Monte Gelato which is along the waterfront.
I tried the chocolate and salted caramel and they were great. I would definitely go back to try the other flavours.
Unfortunately, we didn’t find great coffee at The Mount but Ashleigh from The Food Nest NZ recommended Deckchair cafe along the beachfront.
The other food places we tried were Dixie Browns, Tay Street Beach Cafe and Flour + Water Eatery.
After climbing the Mount, we were extremely hungry and Dixie Browns is conveniently located close to the beach. I heard good things about this place too from a few friends. Unfortunately, we didn’t have a great experience. We were greeted, given a menu and we sat outside. 15 minutes later, no one has come to our table to ask us what to order or give us water.
Since we were so hungry, my partner actually went up to the bar to order and pay for our food. I got the fish with rice and he got the Farmhouse breakfast. We were also given a bowl of chips as they said they got our order wrong (although they didn’t as I wanted the rice with the fish) so I think it was for wait. Overall, the food was alright but the service was bad considering they weren’t busy.
Moving on to a more positive note, we checked out flour + water eatery for dinner. While walking around town, this place caught my eye because of the nice decor. The service was great and fast. We ordered pizzas. Mine was a seafood pizza and we both enjoyed it.
We also thought of going to the hot pools but we were too tired and it was too hot and humid. We just relaxed and it was nice to spend some time outside of Auckland without chores. We missed our kitten Turbo terribly too but it was a nice change to not have a naughty furry thing to look after.
I didn’t have to get too dressed up too but I did put some makeup on when we went out for dinner (left selfie). During the trip, I mostly had my Havaianas or Nike shoes.
I hope you enjoyed this mini travel post. If you’ve been to the Mount, let me know of what other activities I should do when we go back. I enjoyed our stay there so this won’t be the last.