This is a flat section right on the coast, with beautiful views of Matakana Island as well as Tauranga’s iconic landmark, The Mount. Nearly all of it is paved, and is mostly shared with walkers.
From the carpark at the Bethlehem shopping centre, head in a northerly direction along Bethlehem Rd, and at the first roundabout turn right into Carmichael Rd. Follow Carmichael Rd until you pass St Michaels Ave, and a little further turn left and follow the cycle / walking tracks. Travel in an Easterly direction until you come across Princess Rd. Follow Princess Rd, turn left into Margaret Rd, and keep going in an Easterly direction until you get to Ngatai Rd. Follow Ngatai Rd until you come across an underpass that goes underneath the railway line. Duck underneath the railway line and follow the track into the Matua Salt Marsh. Follow this gravel track and take the left fork when you come across it. This should get you into Sylvania Drive. Follow it until you get to Levers Rd and then turn right. A short while later turn left into Tilby Drive, and follow it all the way to Fergusson Park. Follow the path along the coastal side of Fergusson Park, which will get you onto Beach Rd. Follow this all the way along the coast (Kulim Ave, Harbour Drive) until you are forced to turn right and cross the railway line. At this point you’ll find yourself in Maxwell Drive. Follow it to Chapel St and turn left. Follow Chapel St (look out for cars!) until you cross underneath the motorway and turn left into Brown St. A short while later turn right into Willow St, and follow it until you get to downtown Tauranga. On your left is The Strand. Stop for a coffee, use the toilets, have a meal and enjoy!
To continue down to Papamoa (and further South if you wish) look at the Surf 2 Geysers map.