While you’re here, you won’t want to miss –
The Nelson – Tasman region enjoys some of the best weather in New Zealand with plenty of sunshine hours. It’s well-known locally for fun things to do – with an abundance of fruit, wineries, craft breweries and fresh seafood, not to mention spa treatments, so get ready for a blissful time!
Golden Bay is where 17th century Dutch explorer Abel Tasman first set foot on New Zealand soil. The Māori natives weren’t too pleased to see uninvited guests and sent them off in a hurry. Unfortunately Abel Tasman’s crew didn’t get to sample the delights of the area – unlike the visitors of today. In summer you’ll find guests of all nationalities enjoying their vacations in the relaxed atmosphere of this region.
Activities & Events
Creative Nelson is jam-packed full of interesting sights, sounds and personalities.
Large enough to be classed as a city but with a small town feel, you’ll find many things to do in Nelson. It’s a charming mix of arts & crafts markets, cheerful cafes, boutique shops and sensational seafood. With numerous spa and beauty outlets, this is also the perfect place to be pampered!
Time your visit for one of the many festivals or events that take place during the year – the Nelson Arts Festival, Opera in the Park, Kite Festival are the Traditional Irish Music Festival are some of the most popular.
One of Nelson’s most famous events, the World of Wearable Arts (WOW) Awards Show, is now held in Wellington each September but you can still visit the museum in Nelson with its display of an impressive number of creative and often outrageous garments. WOW shares its home with the Classic Cars Museum, a treasure trove for vintage car enthusiasts. Definitely, a stop here will provide something for everyone!
Abel Tasman National Park
New Zealand’s smallest national park is just a 50 minute drive from Nelson. You’ll find one of the country’s loveliest stretches of coastline.
A short water taxi ride from Kaiteriteri will take you up to any of the park’s calm, turquoise bays where you can swim or settle back on the golden sands.
Stroll through the native bush at your leisure to the other beaches where the water taxis depart. Another option is to hire a kayak and paddle to each of the bays on your own time. If you want to extend your stay, the entire Abel Tasman Coastal Track can be walked in 3 to 5 days with huts and campsites to stay in along the way – or pamper yourself overnight in one of the comfortable beachfront lodges.
Golden Bay / Farewell Spit
After spending some time on your New Zealand vacation exploring the Abel Tasman National Park, a popular drive is the trip out to Farewell Spit via Golden Bay.
Stop-off in towns such as Takaka or Collingwood on the way to sample the local food, art & crafts markets and scenic attractions – waterfalls, caves and historic bridges.
Pupu Springs near Takaka is popular for its crystal clear waters with an amazing 200 foot depth for visibility.
Right at the tip of Golden Bay you’ll find the arching sandbar of Farewell Spit, famous for being the longest sandbar in the world. To fully appreciate the history and flora & fauna of this protected wetland contact us to arrange a guided 4WD tour.
Last but not least is the beautiful Nelson Lakes National Park in the south of the region. Featuring two glacier-carved lakes, Rotorua and Rotoiti, and surrounded by seriously stunning mountainous scenery, it’s the perfect setting to relax and unwind.
Keen anglers can head out onto one of the lakes and try a spot of fishing; boating and kayaking are also popular lake activities. Depending on your fitness level there are plenty of well-marked short walks or multi-day hikes with rewarding views for your efforts.
Anyone who visits Nelson – Tasman on their vacation will enjoy the many recreational things to do along with the picture postcard scenery. While here, don’t forget to take advantage of the festivals and Saturday Market to meet creative locals and purchase their unique artworks. You simply won’t find them anywhere else!