Papamoa was our final destination on our 24 hour trip to the Bay of Plenty and what a destination it is!
We were lucky enough to be staying at James cousins house right on the beach of Papamoa (how lucky are we that so many of James family live in beautiful spots and are the nicest people to go and stay with).
Regardless of where you stay everywhere in Papamoa is stunning. There are beautiful beaches that go for miles with distant views of Mt Maunganui. It feels a lot more relaxed than the busyness of Tauranga but still close enough if you feel the sudden withdrawals of city life.
For me however the real highlight was on Sunday morning when I woke up early and decided to go for a walk along the beach as the sun rose.
It was simply stunning and despite it being August it was perfect to go barefoot in the sand. The sunrise was amazing but what made it absolutely magic was the sudden appearance of a seal playing in the surf and then waddling up on the sand to have a bit of a sunbath.
I watched him for a while (not too close so I didn’t scare him) and then went back to get the kids who all raced out of bed, across the road and down on the beach to see him. Luckily for us he was still sunbathing and having the odd dip in the waves.
It was a pretty awesome experience but one that felt completely in step with such an awesome east coast spot.