Large and enclosed, Governors Bay sits below a rugged and rocky section of the Crater Rim. The area is characterised by reserves and farmland, exotic trees dominate the area between shoreline and lower slopes while the upper slopes are covered in extensive regenerating native shrubs.
There are several smaller bays that make up Governors Bay, all of which have muddy tidal shores. A long jetty extends out into deeper water but this is currently closed due to earthquake damage.
There are a number of historic buildings in Governors Bay including the Godley Hotel, Ohinetahi homestead, Governors Bay School and St Cuthberts Church.
Governors Bay is popular for walking, swimming and boating and there are a few cafes in the area for refreshments.