It's been a bright start to the surf season with lots of sunshine and no water rescues.

All three of Tauranga's surf clubs reported beaches full of people making the most of the long weekend and, as of yesterday afternoon, none had needed to rescue people from the water.

At Papamoa Domain yesterday were the Louw family, who had made the trip over from The Lakes to make the most of the sunny weather.

Bridget Louw said the family brought the dog down for a play, and boys Liam and Aiden had a blast digging holes and finished up absolutely covered in sand.


"We had a great time. We often make the trip over but the weather hasn't been so great lately - but the last couple of days have been good."

Jamie Troughton from Mount Maunganui Lifeguard Service said Mount Main Beach was busy right up to Tay St and there was traffic as far as the eye could see.

"[Yesterday] there was upwards of a couple of thousand people right along the beach towards Omanu, but there were very few people in the water.

"It's still a bit chilly - only the hardy are diving in there."

Mr Troughton could see about 20 people in the water, some of whom were beach volleyballers washing off sand.

He said there had been very calm surf with no significant waves and the wind had eased off.

Omanu Beach Surf Life Saving Club director of communications Briar Macken said there had been a couple of hundred people out on the beach yesterday with lots of families enjoying the sunshine.

"It's been a beautiful, crystal clear day. It's still a little chilly, but the surf is perfect for boogie boards.

"There's quite a few people in the water, we've had a constant stream of kids swimming between the flags."

Hamish Smith from Papamoa Surf Life Saving Club said there were between 400 and 500 people on the beach yesterday, although most people in the water were not going much further than their ankles.

"We've got family after family coming down here, lots are coming to the beach for a picnic.

"It's been an awesome start to the season. We've just been down to Papamoa East, that's also quite busy this year with those new subdivisions being built."