After a good nights sleep we awoke to a wonderful sunrise over the ocean with some clouds in the sky reflecting the suns rays onto the water. We decided to make the most of our day here and planned to climb Mount Maunganui as we felt that our friend Chris would ask us if we had done it. So we set off up the path to the summit. The path was lined with magnificent large trees with their exposed roots clinging to the rocky hillside for support. Further on we came across a fernwood forest after which we had great views over the beach, the Bay of Plenty and the town of Tauranga. We reached the summit at 231metres a little tired but pleased that we had made the effort to tackle this mountain, our hearts had been given a bit of a workout but we felt good. After a brief rest we made our way back down the mountain and back to our car. Not forgetting that it was St Valentines day we headed over the bridge to Tauranga Wharf where we came upon a great restaurant, "Simply Irresistible" where we enjoyed a lovely lunch. Mike had a beautiful Steak Sandwich while Margaret tucked into her plate of Penne Pasta finishing off with large bowls of good coffee. Well satisfied we then went into Maunganui, walked around the streets and did a bit of shopping in the local shopping centre. It was then home to catch up with the laundry before ending the day with a long walk on the beach as the sun set.
We left Rotorua at 9.30am. The weather was good as we drove up highway 30 towards Maurea where we joined Highway 33 passing Okere Falls on our way to Papamoa Beach where we had booked a cabin for a couple of nights. The countryside consisted of rolling hills with masses of pine tree forests. We arrived at Rangiuru where the Kiwi360 Kiwi fruit farm is found. Margaret booked for a tour of the farm that started at 1030 but when the time came she was the only person on the tour so she had the fortune of being given personal attention by the guide Sophie. Apparently there were other tours in progress with passengers from a cruise ship from Singapore but the farm is large and they were not noticeable. Sophie first showed her all the fruit and nut trees that grow in the Bay of Plenty area before taking her into the main growing area where she was told the growing process which was very interesting. Back at the lovely shop we bought some items made on the farm including Kiwi moisturizer and Kiwi Liqueur as well as some Kiwi fruit and Kiwi berries which were delicious. We drove into Papamoa Beach Top 10 Holiday Resort at lunch time. We were a bit early for check in, so waited outside the cabin while the cleaners finished preparing it for us. The picnic table overlooking the ocean was a perfect place for us to have a fresh kiwi fruit lunch especially as the box we had bought earlier from the kiwi fruit farm included a plastic knife cum spoon. The resort is located right on the sea shore and the time went quickly until we were given the key to the most beautiful wooden cabin with a double bed facing the window with a view over the ocean where we could both see and hear the waves breaking on the sand. Both the bathroom and the kitchen were perfectly clean and we had a second bedroom with bunk beds where we could store our suitcases out of the way yet easily accessible.