The busy interior of a Tauranga barber.

With its long summers, mild winters and picturesque beaches, Tauranga is bountiful with natural assets. Outdoor enthusiasts will find themselves right at home, but those partial to enjoying the hospitality and culture a city has to offer won’t go without: there’s plenty of this good stuff too. 

Tauranga’s downtown precinct is conveniently located right by the water, with continued development ensuring the waterfront strip is a destination in its own right. Tauranga’s ongoing revitalisation efforts are breathing new life into its downtown precinct, and while recent years have been something of a trying time, many of the businesses have emerged stronger, and better, than before. 

From the perspective of good hospitality, Tauranga ticks all the boxes. Businesses appreciate the custom, and genuine service with a smile has become routine. The city is a culinary feast for the senses: not only are there options for specialty coffee, funky cafes, brew pubs and upmarket dining, there is an abundance of eateries which showcase local flavours and international cuisines. 

And of course, those after some retail therapy will enjoy the charming array of shops downtown Tauranga has to offer. There’s a real sense of community to be felt, and the local businesses will no doubt welcome you with open arms.

12 Hours Tauranga

A street at dusk in Tauranga New Zealand.

When you only have 12 hours somewhere you want to hit the best places first, right? Here’s our guide to the coolest spots in Tauranga.

 

Veto’s Charlotte Greer’s Guide to Downtown Tauranga

A woman holding paper bags and smiling to camera.
Downtown Tauranga

Meet Charlotte Greer. She runs Veto, which produces everyday cleaning products designed to save money and space without causing waste. Here’s her guide to Downtown Tauranga.

One of a Kind Finds in Downtown Tauranga

A birdseye view of pottery on shelves.
Downtown Tauranga

Discover a variety of unique offerings from some of Tauranga’s most loved local businesses and brands.

Insider's Food Guide to Downtown Tauranga

A hand reaching for a piece of fried chicken.
Downtown Tauranga

Nestled amidst the condensed streets and waterfront views, downtown Tauranga has a culinary offering that will both pleasantly surprise and plentifully satisfy.

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RIKARIKA

A hand holding a plate of sushi.
Place Downtown Tauranga
Restaurants key icon.

A name already well known by a few lucky Tauranga residents, RIKARIKA has finally opened its first retail space in downtown Tauranga city.

Elizabeth Cafe & Larder

A flatlay of delicious looking plates of brunch on a table.
Place Downtown Tauranga
Cafes key icon.

From Monday to Friday, Tauranga’s Elizabeth Cafe keeps up with the fast-paced city-slickers, cranking out coffees to the local corporate crowd.

Folk Coffee Roasters

A staff member being served at Folk Brewers Tauranga.
Place Downtown Tauranga
Cafes key icon.

Folk Coffee Roasters provides specialty coffee with purpose, knowledge, and experience.

Sugo

The green exterior of an Italian-style restaurant in Tauranga.
Place Downtown Tauranga
Restaurants key icon.

A stone’s throw from Tauranga’s waterfront lies Sugo, one of the city’s favourite Italian-inspired restaurants.

Chicken Fryday

The restaurant inside Chicken Fryday Tauranga.
Place Downtown Tauranga
Restaurants key icon.

Bringing a little sample of Korean cuisine to downtown Tauranga is Chicken Fryday, a specialist in, you guessed it, Korean Fried Chicken.

Macau Restaurant

The colourful interior of Macau restaurant in Tauranga.
Place Downtown Tauranga
Restaurants key icon.

They say variety is the spice of life, and at Tauranga’s Macau Restaurant, contemporary Asian fusion plates pave the way.

But First Dessert

The colourful entrance to But First Dessert Tauranga.
Place Downtown Tauranga
Cafes key icon.

Calling all the sweet tooths out there! But First Dessert is a dessert bar in Tauranga, specialising in decadent, hand-crafted desserts and treats.

Dam Da

A close up of noodle soup.
Place Downtown Tauranga
Restaurants key icon.

At Dam Da, Korean food takes centre stage.

Clarence Hotel & Restaurant

The covered dining area at Clarence Boutique Hotel in Tauranga.
Place Downtown Tauranga
Accommodation key icon. Restaurants key icon.

Situated in the soulful, historic post office building, the Clarence is the only boutique hotel in downtown Tauranga.

Miss Gee’s

Tall bar seats alongside a graffiti wall inside Miss Gee's Tauranga.
Place Downtown Tauranga
Bars key icon.

Miss Gee’s is a specialty cocktail lounge nestled in the heart of Tauranga’s city centre.

Bobby's Fresh Fish Market

The covered outdoor area at Bobby's Fish Market Tauranga.
Place Downtown Tauranga
Goods key icon. Restaurants key icon.

Bobby’s Fresh Fish Market is a name synonymous with quality fish and chips, having delivered the goods to Tauranga locals starting way back in 1996.

Little Trooper

The exterior of Little Trooper store Tauranga.
Place Downtown Tauranga

Little Trooper is a baby and children’s boutique store in downtown Tauranga offering a carefully curated mix of kids clothing, toys, footwear and games, for all the...

Picnicka

A luxurious seating area inside Picnicka Tauranga.
Place Downtown Tauranga
Bars key icon. Restaurants key icon.

Mirroring the revitalisation of Tauranga’s CBD, Picnicka is a local spot where there is always something going on.

Busters Tattoo & Barber Shop

T-shirts and works on display inside a tattoo studio in Tauranga.
Place Downtown Tauranga
Services key icon.

Somewhere style meets tradition is at Busters Tattoo and Barbershop, located in the heart of Tauranga’s CBD.

Mt Zion Coffee Co

Customers dining inside a small cafe at dawn.
Place Downtown Tauranga
Cafes key icon.

Their specialty is a darn good cup of joe and at Mt Zion Coffee Co, they love to serve their beloved community the very best of brews.

Breadhead

The entrance to Breadhead Tauranga.
Place Downtown Tauranga
Cafes key icon.

Carb lovers and enthusiasts of Tauranga, if you haven’t already acquainted yourselves with Breadhead then immediately add it to the top of your must-visit list.