Tauranga is the most populous city in the Bay of Plenty region, in the North Island of New Zealand. It was settled by Europeans in the early 19th century and was constituted as a city in 1963. Tauranga City is the centre of the sixth largest urban area in New Zealand, with an urban population of 121,500 (June 2011 estimate). The city lies in the north-western corner of the Bay of Plenty, on the south-eastern edge of Tauranga Harbour.
The city expands over an area of 168 square kilometres (65 sq mi), and encompasses the communities of Bethlehem, on the south-western outskirts of the city; Greerton, on the southern outskirts of the city; Matua, west of the central city overlooking Tauranga Harbour; Maungatapu; Mount Maunganui, located north of the central city across the harbour facing the Bay of Plenty; Otumoetai; Papamoa, Tauranga's largest suburb, located on the Bay of Plenty; Tauranga City; Tauranga South; and Welcome Bay. Tauranga is one of New Zealand's main centres for business, international trade, culture, fashion and horticultural science. The Port of Tauranga is New Zealand's largest port in terms of gross export tonnage.