A scavenger hunt based in Bay of Plenty's pristine bushes and reserves is hoped to showcase some of the region's untouched gems - as well as keeping the kids busy during the holidays.

The School Holiday Scavenger Hunt will run over the course of the holidays, which begin today.

There are six version of the hunt at locations including McLaren Falls Park and the TECT All Terrain Park, organised by Sport Bay of Plenty and Virtually on Track.

Sport Bay of Plenty recreation team leader Sonia Lynds said the hunts were aimed at helping showcase some of the region's most beautiful, but not-necessarily-known-about, areas.

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"We've promoted different things on these sites before to try to show locals what gems we have in our backyard," she said.

Lynds said sometimes local people did not know of these places and this was the first time the organisation had created a scavenger hunt in them.

"The good thing about some of these places, like at TECT All Terrain Park, is you can take your dog as well and you can do it any time during the holidays.

"And if people use them, they will remember them and hopefully use them more and care about them."

Apps and technology used in other activities have been replaced this time around by traditional pen and paper. To take part, all people need to do is download clues from the Virtually on Track website.

"It's not just for children. It's something people of most ages can do. It's a fun, simple way of orienteering."

Spot prizes are on offer courtesy of Redwoods Treewalk Rotorua, Waimarino Adventure Park, The Wall and Basement Cinema Rotorua, Rocktopia and more.

People can explore any time between April 14 and April 29. People can go to as many of the locations as they want - each one is a chance to win.


The School Holiday Scavenger Hunt is being held at:
- McLaren Falls Park, Tauranga
- TECT All Terrain Park, Tauranga
- Blue Lake, Rotorua
- Boyes Beach, Rotorua
- Hukutaia Domain, Opotiki
- Fairbrother Loop, Ohope
Clue documents and more information are available at www.virtuallyontrack.co.nz.

How to keep children occupied these holidays - 20 things to do in Tauranga:

- These scavenger hunts are happening all around the Bay of Plenty during the school holidays, so go hunting and complete as many as you like.

- Interested in becoming a DJ? The Aotearoa DJ Academy is running programmes on Monday at Mauao Performing Arts Centre, Mount Maunganui.

- Head to the beach. Whether you want to surf or collect shells, you can't go wrong with fresh sea air. If you are heading into the water, it may pay to pack your wetsuit.

- Check out art classes at the Young at Art Studio in the Historic Village, which has workshops for children 6 and over during April. Costs range from $25 and $65.

- Walk the streets looking out for art - there is plenty to be found in Tauranga and Mount Maunganui.

- Pack a blanket and have a picnic. This can be a great idea for parents wanting to have a day to get things sorted around the house. Pack the kids a small lunch and snacks and let them enjoy a picnic on the lawn.

- On Friday nights the Mount Maunganui Sports centre has roller disco skate sessions for children 10 and over. It costs $10 each, skates and protective padding included if needed.

- Go for a bike ride. Pack up the bikes and head out along the many flat tracks and mountainbike tracks around Tauranga. If you don't have a vehicle to transport bikes head out in your own neighbourhood.

- The Western Bay of Plenty Rugby Holiday Programme is on April 18-19. Kids will take part in rugby events, fitness and challenges organised by the Bay of Plenty Rugby Union.

- Get crafty: Print out colouring sheets, make some slime or make masks - there are plenty of ways to keep children doing craft these holidays. It's a cheap and fun way to keep occupied for hours.

- Head down to Animates on April 19 and 26 from 11am for free activity sessions about animals.

- Go geocaching. Download the app on your smartphone and find out how many caches you can find in your area. The app works all around the world so turn it on wherever you are.

- Visit the markets - with plenty of venues around the Western Bay running throughout the week and in evenings, there will be one to suit every family.

- Go discovering playgrounds. Head out to areas you haven't been to so the kids can burn off energy exploring a new park.

- At 7pm On April 26, take the kids to the Welcome Bay Community Centre to hear people singing covers. Entry is by donation and is for the local Lions club community projects.

- Head to the library. If you're not a member yet, this is a great time to join. Find interesting books to read and enjoy for some quiet times during the holidays.

- You can fill a whole day with a drive to McLaren Falls Park. Head out on the tracks and check out the waterfalls. There is plenty to see.

- Stock Cars and fireworks are on at Baypark on April 28. Take the kids for a colourful night.

- Take in some views. Make a day of climbing Mauao. Gather some friends and their children to join you too. Don't forget snacks and water for the younger ones.

- Check out some art. Head to the Tauranga Art Gallery and find out what exhibitions are on display.

- With temperatures getting cooler, you can't go past a warm soak in a hot pool at the Mount Hot Pools.

- Have a lazy day. Let the children choose a movie each and have a movie day at home. Why not add to the excitement by building forts in the lounge so they can watch from their own areas?

- Head to the Historic Village and show the kids what life looked like well before they were born.

- Go fishing. What kid doesn't enjoy the thrill of fishing? Head out to one of the wharves and throw in a line.

- The Kaiate Falls track is very kid-friendly. It's a short walk in Welcome Bay with pleasant views.

- The Te Puna Quarry Park is a must-do. It's the perfect location for a day trip, exploring tracks, gardens and more. It's also a fantastic place for a picnic.

- Head to Baywave where the children can have hours of fun on the hydroslide, do some bombs and enjoy the waves.

- Get baking. Cupcakes are easy to make, fun to decorate and even better to eat. They'll keep the kids entertained for hours.

- Go rock climbing. Rocktopia has indoor rock climbing for just about every level. It's colourful, active and fun.

- Organise a playdate, if you dare. The children will be missing their school friends during the holiday so why not meet up with another parent and their kids at a park or invite them over to play?