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why live here

Information on Tauranga City


Maori first discovered this area in the 13th Century and named it “Tauranga” meaning ‘the place of rest or anchorage’. It has grown rapidly in recent years and now offers cosmopolitan city living combined with a laid-back atmosphere.

Our city airport is located just over the Tauranga Harbour Bridge where you can catch direct flights to and from Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch. If you choose to drive, we’re an easy 2.5 hour road trip south from Auckland, or a slightly longer car journey northwest from Hawkes Bay.

Here you will find yourself surrounded by, and drawn to, Tauranga’s harbour which is sheltered from the open ocean by Matakana Island and Mount Maunganui.

The city’s main hospitality area is right on the waterfront. Choose from a wide range of bars and restaurants along The Strand where fine dining and international cuisine is served alongside bar snacks and tapas platters. This is where locals come to share after-work drinks, celebrate big events and socialise with friends.

Across the road on the water’s edge, your children will have a ball on the local playground. Let their imaginations run wild as they clamber over the Hairy Maclary bronze sculptures – a story-book scene featuring the beloved characters from Tauranga author Dame Lynley Dodd’s famous children’s books.

Follow your nose along the waterfront walkway to the Cargo Shed creative arts market. These undercover art stalls are a great place to shop for a unique piece of New Zealand art or a special memento of your trip.

Tauranga’s growing arts scene is evident right across the city. You are sure to notice renowned local street artist Owen Dippie’s major works which span several stories high on the side of many buildings. Pay a visit to Tauranga’s Art Gallery to view national and international exhibitions and be charmed by Greerton’s yarn bombing craze, where giant balls of wool and knitting encase the trunks of cherry trees which line the suburban village streets.

This city is also the economic hub of the Western Bay of Plenty. Many national and international businesses are based here, and the bustling Port of Tauranga is the country’s largest export port. Catch a glimpse of the port in action as you drive over the Harbour Bridge or take a scenic helicopter flight across the region.

Head just out of town to explore walking tracks and waterfalls, or take your courage with you to the TECT All Terrain Park to experience high wire adventures, mountain biking and motorsport activities.

First-rate medical and service facilities can be found right across this safe and friendly city.

Whether you want to dine, shop, explore the fascinating culture and history, or simply kick off your shoes and relax on the green grass under blue skies, Tauranga is waiting for you.