Mt Maunganui attracts quite a crowd in summer, especially around Christmas and New Years. The concert on the beach on New Years Eve is an unmissable classic, but there’s plenty of other stuff to do on those lazy summer days, and even in spring and autumn! We’ve compiled a list of some of the best ways to spend your days at the Mount.
WALK AROUND THE MOUNT
Choose from two trails, the base track or the summit track. Mt Maunganui or ‘Mauao’, stands at 232m above sea level, so the summit track requires a reasonable level of fitness. You might arrive huffing and puffing at the top, but the view from the peak is well worth it. You’ll see the entire Western coastline of the Bay of Plenty from this vantage point, including all the gorgeous beaches. If you want a more casual stroll, the base track is a picturesque 45 min walk, perfect for the whole family. The Mount is surrounded by the ocean, and large portions of the pathways are covered by pohutakawa trees. Scramble down to the white sand beaches to dip your toes in the water, or watch the sheep and bunny rabbits as you walk around the mountain.
EAT SOME ICECREAM
Copenhagen Cones is a local institution. A walk around the Mount is not complete without stopping at Copenhagen for one of these picture-worthy treats. If you’re not sure where to go, just let the smell of freshly-made waffle cones lead the way. This shop has been around for nearly 30 years, and even with the queue out the door, it’s worth the wait. Get an ice-cream with all the toppings, or try a milkshake in a classic “Longest Drink in Town” cup. Located at 14 Adams Ave, Copenhagen is the place to go.
EAT SOME PIZZA
The Pizza Library is extremely popular in the Mount. With its literary-inspired menu, eccentric decor, and delicious pizzas, the Pizza Library is a great place to go for lunch or dinner. Look out for the crazy statues outside the door, including various Santas, and Alvin and the Chipmunks. Using fresh and local produce, the Pizza Library makes some unique and truly delicious pizzas you’re sure to enjoy. It’s a novel approach to pizza, and one we highly recommend.
CHECK OUT THE BEACH
Mt Maunganui has some amazing beaches, great for both sunbathing and fun in the water. One long beach borders the eastern side of Mt Maunganui, with areas for surfing and sunbathing. There are often events on the beach, if you’re interested in sports or people-watching. While you’re there, wander up Moturiki Island, near the Mount itself – connected to the beach by a land bridge, Moturiki, or ‘Leisure’ Island, makes for a great little walk. There are some amazing views to be had at the end, especially the blowhole, and this 5-10 minute walk is an easy way to take the kids to see rock pools. It’s a walk that many have done in their jandals, so it’s worth checking out while you’re there.
DO A LITTLE SHOPPING
Mt Maunganui’s Main Street offers plenty of boutique fashion stores, cafes and restaurants, galleries, and souvenir shops. From the Astrolabe Brewbar, to Sunny’s Variety Store, wandering down Maunganui Road is a great way to spend an afternoon. The other shopping streets offer just as many great places to check out, including a personal favourite, the Mt Bookworm. This book exchange is a local treasure, and you could easily find yourself losing track of time browsing the stacks. There’s a little something for everyone in Mt Maunganui, so don’t be afraid to wander around.
Mount Maunganui is about 3 hours out of Auckland, so it’s perfect for a short holiday, especially if you’re looking for a long weekend getaway. Whether you go for a weekend or a week, the Mount is a great holiday destination.
If you’re looking to explore elsewhere, be inspired by the “On the Road” series in which we explore other regions, many only a few hours drive from Auckland.
Book your own Mighway campervan rental directly from a savvy owner with Mighway and take an unforgettable trip to the Mount.