Campervans and motorhomes with certified self-containment status can free camp at the Wairoa River Reserve near Tauranga. The reserve lies beside the SH2 bridge on the northern banks of the Wairoa River.
This location, while handy to Tauranga without straying off the highway, does have potential to be noisy given the proximity to SH2.
There is a 3 night maximum stay in any 4 week consecutive period at this site. The 4 consecutive weeks begin from the first overnight stay.
The Western Bay of Plenty District Council ask you leave your campsite clean, respect other reserve and river users and obey all signage in the area.
3 reviews with the most recent first
For some reason I have a feeling that rest areas under bridges attract undesirable people….totally unfounded but it has taken a point or two off the rating.
Right under a main highway - lots of trucks could make for a noisy night. Other than that a nice spot on the river, plenty of grassy areas. Has a resident flock of chickens - at least one rooster so you may be in for an early-morning wake-up call.
NOTE: clearance height under bridge is 2.5m - you can access parking spots from both sides of the bridge.
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We meant to stay at this place but decided against it for a couple of reasons.
+ The toilet is a flush toilet and all you can hope for from a public toilet.
- It's right next to the state highway so very loud traffic noise,
- Low bridge under road so a lot of campervan a wont be able to get to the 'pretty' parking,
- After we pulled up and were deciding whether or not to stay a man pulled up in his ute and started staring at us. We decided to ignore him but he then drive around us and parked and wandered right around our van peering at us before going to the toilet. When he was walking back to his van he again decided the best route was to circumnavigate our van whilst looking at us and inside the van. We decided we didn't like it so moved on.
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Friendly, small, clean, could not ask for more.