Marie Stone

Marie reports here on our blog about travel, adventure and weddings.

Marie Stone Author

Whakatane the adventure playground

Whakatane is known for its temperate climate and sunny skies but its main claim to fame is the live volcano of White Island just 48 kms away. White Island is accessible by boat or helicopter and is one of the few live volcanoes in the world you can set foot upon. The landscape of steaming vents, bubbling mud pools, smouldering acid lakes and sulphuric rock formations can be explored by taking a day tour from Whakatane. Alternatively, you can take a scenic flight and view this unusual volcano from the air. The diving around White Island is spectacular with underwater volcanic bommies, crystal clear water and prolific marine life.  

Whakatane is one of the best fishing spots in New Zealand with game fishing, surfcasting and reef fishing producing Marlin, Tuna, Skip Jack, Snapper and Hapuka. Te Urewera National Park and the rivers and streams around the Whakatane district provide plenty of opportunities to catch a trout on a self-guided bus tour. The town is right beside the beach and many of the local accommodation choices are located to soak up the seaside atmosphere.

Whakatane attractions and activities include white water rafting, mountain biking, walks, kayaking and a selection of art and craft galleries. There are local wineries to visit and the Awakeri Hot Springs is the perfect place to rest and relax at the end of an action-packed day. You can go whale watching and dolphin spotting, or across land on a wilderness adventure.  Kiwis roam the hills around Whakatane and their calls can be heard at night resonating from the surrounding bushland. There is no other large residential development that has the kiwi in such close proximity due to Whakatane’s wildlife protection and regeneration plan.

Enjoy all that Whakatane has to offer by booking a bus with us.    Hire a bus from Tauranga to visit Whakatane and the surrounding areas.

Whakatane is a vibrant community-oriented town and has a growing art and craft scene. You can follow the creative trail to discover local artists and the way they reflect the beautiful natural surroundings in their works. There are plenty of cafes and restaurants which follow the beachside theme. The Whakatane wharf area and Ohope beach have water views to match the charming ambience of the eateries and the central shopping area has a great choice of chain stores, boutique shops and art galleries which are set amongst tree-lined streets and gardens in the Bay of Plenty.

Not far north from Whakatane is the Coromandel.  Build the Coromandel into your trip itinerary and explore all that the Bay of Plenty has to offer.