I just love a local Summer holiday! There's always something so exciting about hooking up the jet ski and packing the car full of bicycles, beach gear, towels, flippers, goggles, snacks and Summer music playlists - and setting off for a week of sun, sea and adventure.
This holiday we spent some time in Mount Maunganui, just outside Tauranga, in the Bay of Plenty area. It's a popular beach holiday destination in New Zealand because the beaches are so gorgeous and the town boasts many cute stores and lovely restaurants. There's also a great walk to do around and up the Mount, down at the beach.
One evening after dinner out in Tauranga city, we were having a wander around and discovered a park with the characters from the Hairy Maclary stories. I was beyond excited! I loved reading those stories to my kids when they were growing up. Do you know these books? If you have young kids and you haven't heard of them, do go and have a look because they are seriously the cutest.
^ Hercules Morse. As big as a horse.
I mean, just look at the movement on Muffin McLay! So good.
As you can see, I couldn't get enough of that place! Grant and Luke eventually had to drag me out of there! ;)
On one of our days away, we rode our bikes from the Mount, along the beach road, to Papamoa - about 20-odd kms in total. And I mention (brag) about this here because it had been my first cycle in ages and boy was I proud of myself for my efforts that day! Hah! Okay, it was a pretty flat ride, but we had to cycle into the wind on our way back which wasn't what I'd call fun. ;)
And after that solid effort, we rewarded ourselves by lounging on the beach for the rest of the day:
Did I mention that I love Summer holidays? And the beach? Because I really do.
This guy went off to buy himself an ice-cream and somehow managed to charm the ice-cream lady into giving him a couple of extra scoops for free! *quite the charmer, this one*
And besides enjoying a couple of meals with friends down there, doing some jet skiing and spending time on the beach soaking up the sun, we also went to the local hot springs and a movie on the one rainy day.
And then it was time to head back home for New Year's Eve.
And that was our little getaway. Over and out.