Mark Sandoval has travelled all around the world.

But the Pāpāmoa resident says there's no place like home.

The 27-year-old said his life changed when he made a video showcasing Mount Maunganui. The video went viral on social media, gaining over 10,000 views in just an hour.

The video now has 680,000 views on Facebook and over 12,000 shares.

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"I've been making videos, dance videos since I was a child and also at school, I made travel videos," he said.

"But the moment I uploaded that video, that's when things changed for me.

"I realised that the number one thing that makes an interesting video is having people in it, especially locals."

Mark left his IT job this year to focus on making videos full time and launch his own company. This year he has been to six countries - Asia Airlines sponsored him to travel to New Caledonia and Bali.

But Mark said the Bay of Plenty is filled with many hidden gems, and he's keen to share his insider knwledge:

- Kaiate Falls (also known as Te Rerekawau Falls) is a 30-minute drive from Tauranga. There is also a swimming hole at the base of the lower falls.

"You work every day and then you go home, repeat, go home, but a place like this, where you can enjoy nature- there's something about a waterfall.

"Every waterfall is beautiful in their own unique way. It's the perfect place to be in the summer."

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- Pāpāmoa Lookout - a 5-minute drive from main Papamoa to see a 360-degree panoramic view of the town.

"If you want to see a beautiful view of the town and you don't want to walk, this is the best place to go."

- Papamoa Beach, a quiet alternative to main Mount Maunganui beach.

"What I like about Pāpāmoa is that it's quiet. You can find quiet spots. Everyone thinks Mount Maunganui is the best but there's Pāpāmoa."

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