The Bay of Plenty is primarily frequented by visitors due to its magnificent beaches that draw surfers the whole year. There are also surrounding islands and reefs where fishing and diving enthusiasts can have their share of fine catch and scenic dive spots. Visitors can also experience different kinds of adventure in various activities and tours that can be found in the region. There is blokarting (land sailing), dolphin encounter cruises, skydiving, and tours of the White Island, the only marine volcano in New Zealand. There are plenty of hot pools and spas for people who want some pampering and want to relax and enjoy the view of the bay.

The Bay of Plenty was named appropriately because of the area's abundant produce and seafood. There are many gardens and farms around Tauranga, the major city in the region. These farms grow different produce from avocados, citrus fruits, culinary herbs and the very famous kiwifruit. The area also has flourishing local wineries and bountiful seafood which is why there are so many restaurants and cafes around the region.

Visitors who come to the Bay of Plenty definitely will have their fill when they wine and dine in the region. With the plentiful supply of local ingredients, from fruits, seafood and farm-fresh products, there are many highly praised a la carte restaurants and family style eateries, and there are also contemporary and fine dining restaurants. They all utilize the local produce and give people a wide selection of choices from international to local cuisine. For those who want to taste the local wines, there are world class wineries and a good number of bars for guests that want to sample the night life in The Bay of Plenty.

Many locals and frequent visitors highly recommend Lava East Café Restaurant in Tauranga for a very pleasant dining experience. They specialize in Malaysian and Asian-fusion dishes at inexpensive prices. The very friendly and courteous owner of Lava East Café Restaurant is always present to assist and make sure that the guests of the restaurant are all well served. The dishes are well flavored and have not been westernized. Parking is free, and there is no strict dress code. They are open from 10am to 930pm and serve breakfast, lunch and dinner. Also located in Tauranga is Gold Mela Restaurant which serves French and Italian cuisine. A lot of guests of Gold Mela have praised the wonderful atmosphere and authentic European décor of the place. The restaurant is very family friendly and does its best to be a small and comfy French and Italian restaurant that serves generous amounts of beautifully prepared and well presented fantastic dishes. A good number of guests highly recommend the pizza, steak and blue vein cheese. They are open from 5pm to very late at night.

Operating at a 1910 cottage in Paengaroa, Trading Post Cafe & Restaurant is a quiet place where visitors can go for a relaxing morning or afternoon tea. They can also have light lunch in the garden or enjoy dinner in the cottage with its antique furniture and elegant wooden floors. Customers of the Trading Post Cafe and Restaurant often stop by after coming from tours of the orchards and kiwifruit farms surrounding the area or from the nearby beaches. The cottage has two dining rooms that can accommodate up to 34 people at ease. There are also tables under umbrellas and roofed areas that can seat 32 more guests. They can serve private functions such as weddings and reunions and can also handle special corporate events in offsite venues.

A classy coffee shop and wine bar that is located at the Strand in Tauranga, The Naked Grape is a good place to get a yummy mocha or relaxing coffee and sample the wines in its collection. Many of Its customers are people who work in Tauranga and visitors from around New Zealand and from different countries. They are open from 7am for breakfast and well up to late at night. Their extensive menu selection includes light meals, salads, pastas and vegetarian dishes. Most famous are their big breakfast, chicken dishes and pizza. Even though they have only been operating for more than 3 years, they have built up a regular clientele who go back and enjoy their tasty food, superb coffee, and wide collection of local and imported beer and wine.

For people who want to enjoy a great night out with live entertainment, they can go and visit Rain Bar and Restaurant in Papamoa. They are open every day from 11am up to late at night and have an all-day menu that is prepared by their first-rate group of chefs. Their staff is very friendly and accommodating and the place is very family friendly. The atmosphere in Rain Bar is very relaxed and there is no strict dress code. Guests are usually advised to try their chicken, steak and seafood. They have great calamari, fresh mussels and sweet prawns. They also have special menus for vegetarians such as dairy-free and gluten-free dishes. They also have free tap beer for customers at certain times and have special events and parties during rugby matches.