Moving to the Bay of Plenty to live is something that can offer some significant challenges and can also deliver some great rewards, and whether you are moving a short distance or from another country, life in the region certainly has its own flavor. With a beautiful coastline that ranges from sandy beaches to rocky shoreline, and some wonderful natural scenes inland too, this is certainly a great place to live if you are looking to find a balance between work and being able to enjoy the outdoors in your spare time. There is also a lively social scene in the area, whether you are in the largest city Tauranga or you are in one of the many other smaller towns and cities in the region.
Maori Influences In The Bay Of Plenty
Before the English explorer Captain James Cook ever set eyes on the abundant resources and named the area the Bay of Plenty, the Maori people had long been established in this part of the world. Today, around fifteen per cent of the population is of Maori origin, and the vast majority can trace their origins to three groups of the Polynesian tribes that arrived in New Zealand many centuries ago. You will still find that there is a strong Maori identity, with many towns having art galleries and public sculptures inspired by this Maori heritage, and there are regular events held throughout the year that celebrate the culture.
If you are looking to learn a little more about Maori culture in the region, Rotorua is a beautiful area that has several Maori villages that are dedicated to teaching others about their cultures and traditions. Many people will look to visit these areas in the evening, so they can enjoy a traditional hangi meal, along with learning more about the history of the Maori people.
Homes And Accommodation
When it comes to property in the Bay of Plenty, the prices vary quite significantly between Tauranga, where there is limited availability and high rents through to much more affordable homes available elsewhere in the region. While Tauranga is a city where there are apartments available, most of the region will have homes that will at least have a small garden, and many that offer a lot of living space for relatively low rents. There are plenty of options available, and if you are really on a budget, you can also look for apartment shares or rooms for rent once you have arrived in the area, using local advertising services.
Festivals And Events
There are plenty of things to keep you going during the year in the Bay of Plenty, with the area being famous for the range of music and sporting festivals held regularly there. The music festivals range from jazz and reggae through to rock and pop, while events held to promote cycling, hiking and water sports are all held in the area at different times of the year. There are also plenty of local events celebrating the food and drink that is produced in the region, and as you would expect there is no shortage of great food to be enjoyed during these events.
Bay Of Plenty Sports
Sport plays an important role in the life of the region, with the Bay of Plenty Steamers being the local rugby team which competes in the ITM Cup, with some of their best players also going on to play in Super Rugby for the Waikato Chiefs. They also have regional cricket, soccer and netball teams, and plenty of local clubs if you are interested in trying to play against some of the sport mad locals.
If adventure sports are more your cup of tea, there are some great rivers inland where kayaking and white water rafting is a popular activity, along with skydiving opportunities in Taupo.
Your Working Life In The Bay Of Plenty
Generally, work in the region offers a very competitive work life balance and gives you plenty of opportunities to get out and to enjoy the surroundings. Jobs will usually offer a minimum of four weeks paid holiday per year along with the eleven public holidays that are enjoyed throughout New Zealand, although it you are comfortable with shorter holidays, some employers will offer a cash payment instead of one week of your paid holidays. The working hours are generally between 35 and 40 hours a week, although those working in service industries or tourist industries may have to work outside the normal hours and on public holidays.
Social Life In The Region
Along with the range of events that are held in the area throughout the year, there are also plenty of social clubs and sports clubs that will allow you to meet others from your community, and to get to know one another. During the summer months, barbecues and social events are common both among colleagues and among friends, with the beautiful surroundings making it common for people to enjoy the outdoors where possible. The night life is at its best in Tauranga, although in towns like Taupo and Rotorua, you are just as likely to find international tourists enjoying a drink or two as you are to meet the locals.