Heavy rain across the Coromandel and Bay of Plenty has turned roads and paddocks into swimming pools with high tide likely to add to the flooding.

The MetService told the Herald up to 180mm of rain has fallen just south of Whitianga and down to the Tairua Harbour over the past 24 hours, while up to 175mm has drenched Rotorua.

Residents in Ngongotaha have had to flee their homes due to a stream bursting its banks, which has also trapped about 200 visitors at the Agrodome tourist centre.

Campers were reportedly trapped at the Wentworth Valley Campground this afternoon, while Waihi fire chief Moe Stevens said the Ohinemuri River came close to overflowing through the Karangahake Gorge.

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Residents in Tairua have also had their homes and properties flooded.

Thames-Coromandel District Council Civil Defence controller Garry Towler warned residents that high tide was due to hit at 6.20pm today.

Four-wheel-drives will be handy trying to tackle SH25 today. Photo / Thames-Coromandel District Council
Four-wheel-drives will be handy trying to tackle SH25 today. Photo / Thames-Coromandel District Council

"The water tables are very high, so expect surface flooding and manhole covers to pop. Our advice is to hunker down for the day and keep safe and dry. Heavy rain often results in slips which can affect the roading network and driving may be hazardous, so avoid travelling if you can, otherwise check NZTA's website before you need to travel."

Flood waters were also lapping across the road on State Highway 2 through the Karangahake Gorge this afternoon.

State Highway 25 between Whiritoa and Whangamata remains closed due to flooding, along with Hot Water Beach Rd and Wentworth Valley Rd.

The Hauraki District Council this afternoon closed the Ohinemuri River Bridge on Barry Rd, Waihi, as a precautionary measure until it can be assessed by a structural engineer. A detour is available via Trig Rd and Golden Valley Rd.

MetService duty forecaster Ravi Kandula said another heavy concentration of downpours fell in the Coromandel between 2pm and 3pm today but the weather was due to ease.

"Overnight and tomorrow morning is going to turn into showers so there's going to be a temporary break there, so showers will come and go, but the possibility of heavy showers remains right through the overnight period and again through most of tomorrow.

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The car's headlights point in the direction of travel for this motorist negotiating the Coromandel today. Photo / Thames-Coromandel District Council
The car's headlights point in the direction of travel for this motorist negotiating the Coromandel today. Photo / Thames-Coromandel District Council

"This evening they're going to see a change from persistent rain to a more showery regime, so that's some light at the end of the tunnel."

The heavy rain is currently easing on the Coromandel Peninsula this afternoon. It will ease to showers in the Bay of Plenty this evening.

He said the 140mm to 175mm was a large amount for any city to experience in a 24-hour period.

"There's some pretty exceptional numbers there."

While tomorrow will see the remains of the front bringing showers, the weather will begin to clear by Tuesday afternoon.

Eastern areas, including Hawke's Bay, Wairarapa, Bay of Plenty, Rotorua, Taupo and the South Island will get the wet weather again tomorrow and into Tuesday.

"Through Tuesday and Wednesday it's going to ease and by Thursday and Friday it's looking pretty good."