Every summer, more than 60,000 New Zealanders make their annual holiday pilgrimage to Tauranga and Mount Maunganui. If you plan to come here between December and February, book well in advance. All rates below include 15% GST and free parking.
In & Near Tauranga
You'll find most motels on Waihi Road and 15th Avenue. The Tauranga YHA is at 171 Elizabeth St. (www.yha.co.nz; tel. 0800/278-299 in NZ, or 07/578-5064). For a great-value bed and breakfast, head straight for Casa del Mare, 35 Monticello Key, Palm Springs Estate, Papamoa, Tauranga (www.casadelmare.co.nz; tel. 07/542-2996), where two beautifully appointed rooms opening onto the garden go for NZ$150 to NZ$250. The Hotel on Devonport, 72 Devonport Rd. (www.hotelondevonport.net.nz; tel. 0800/322-856 in NZ, or 07/578-2668), is a smart boutique establishment with big, modern rooms, that's well-located in the center of the city. Rates run from NZ$255 for a standard to NZ$325 for a suite. The gorgeous Ridge Country Retreat, 300 Rocky Cutting Rd., Welcome Bay, Tauranga (www.rcr.co.nz; tel. 07/542-1301), is a real find - a boutique lodge and spa that provides just about anything you could wish for in a smart, contemporary environment on 14 hectares (35 acres) of sloping hills and native bush just out of the city. Rooms are big and sumptuous, and it's all about understated luxury. Six spacious villas feature a private deck and individual outdoor geothermal tubs. Suites go for NZ$755 to NZ$980, while a villa will set you back NZ$1,175.
In Mount Maunganui
Pacific Coast Backpackers, 432 Maunganui Rd. (www.pacificcoastlodge.co.nz; tel. 0800/666-622 in NZ, or 07/574-9601), is just a few hundred meters from the beach and downtown. Dorm beds are NZ$24 to NZ$32 per person and doubles NZ$68 to NZ$85 per room. At the top end, you'll be well looked after with 60 gorgeous seaside apartments at Oceanside Resort & Twin Towers, 1 Maunganui Rd., Mount Maunganui (www.oceanside.co.nz; tel. 0800/466-868 in NZ, or 07/575-5371). The high-rise complex also features a heated lap pool, gym and sauna, and secure underground parking. Rates range from NZ$185 for a studio to NZ$410 for a two-bedroom suite. A selection of restaurants and cafes are available inside the complex and within walking distance.
Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.