Skip to main content

Swimming Water Quality

The map below provides a summary of monitoring results from more than 80 popular coastal, river and lake recreation sites around the Bay of Plenty.  Sites are monitored for faecal contamination (bacterial monitoring) from October to March each year and for toxin-forming algae species (algal bloom monitoring) from October to June each year. Click on the area of interest for more detailed information.

You should avoid swimming in rivers for 48 hours (two days) after heavy or prolonged rain. This is because the water can be contaminated by farm and urban run-off.

If you suspect an algal bloom is present, don't swim or take part in an activity that may result in accidental consumption or exposure to water affected by algal blooms. 

Lake RotoehuRangitaiki RiverPongakawa RiverTarawera BeachKereu RiverWhanarua BayTe Kaha Beach Maraetai BayHikuwai Beach End of Snell RoadWaiotahi Beach Surf ClubWaiotahi Beach EstuaryOhiwa Harbour Reserve Boat RampOhope Beach Surf 'n Sand Motor CampOhope Beach Surf ClubWhakatane Heads Oceanside of Boat RampPiripai Beach Ocean BeachPukehina BeachLittle Waihi Domain Boat RampMaketu Surf ClubWaimapu Estuary Motel-Motor CampFergusson Park, Tilby Point Reserve (Boat Ramp)Outmoetai Beach reserve end of BeachOmokoroa BeachPahoia End of BeachPilot Bay Mid BeachMt Maunganui Ocean Beach Surf ClubWaihi Beach Surf ClubAnzac Bay Bowentown DomainAthenree Opposite Motor CampTanners Point BeachOngare Point Harbour View RoadRangataua Bay opposite MaraeLake RotomaLake RotoitiLake RotoitiLake OkarekaLake TikitapuLake RotoruaLake RotoruaLake RotoruaLake OkaroLake RerewhakaaituLake RerewhakaaituOtara River Waioweka RiverTauranga RiverWhakatane RiverRangitaiki RiverTarawera RiverPuarenga StreamNgongotaha StreamWaiteti StreamUtuhina StreamOhau ChannelWaitangi SpringsWairoa RiverUretara StreamWairoa RiverNgamuwahine RiverTuapiro StreamKaiate FallsKopurererua StreamWaitui Reserve3 MileOmanu Beach
Bathing Beach Map Tauranga Rotorua Whakatane East Cape Rangitaiki

The Three Tier System for Swimming Water Quality

Green DotGreen

Highly likely to be uncontaminated. 'Suitable' for bathing, but requiring water managers to continue surveillance or routine monitoring.

Amber DotAmber

Potentially contaminated. 'Potentially unsuitable', requiring water managers to undertake further investigation to assess suitability for recreation.

Red DotRed

Highly likely to be contaminated. 'Highly likely to be unsuitable', requiring urgent action from water managers, such as public warnings.

Further information

  • For further information on microbiological water quality monitoring, visit our monitoring information page.
  • For further information on toxin-forming algae species visit our algae page.
  • For more information on the health impacts and symptoms from accidentally coming into contact with contaminated water, please go to the Toi Te Ora - Public Health website.
  • Visit the Rotorua Lakes Lake Health Warnings page for information on algal blooms in our lakes and our Rivers Health Warnings page for information on algal blooms in our rivers, or contact us on 0800 884 880.