Next to Auckland, Nelson and Marlborough have the highest per capita boat ownership in New Zealand.
The open waters of Tasman Bay are the glistening trail to one of New Zealand’s most renowned – and its second smallest national park, the Abel Tasman National Park.
This gilded coastline, protected by a conservation order, offers an ideal retreat for racing yachties keen to click into cruising mode.
Swimming, snorkelling and exploring the coastline’s many lagoons and inner waterways are key attractions for boaties, especially when the seals are sunbathing or splashing around the rocky coastline.
Fishing is okay, but only outside the marine reserve, which is clearly marked off Bark Bay.
The Abel Tasman park’s famed walking track is easily accessible from many anchorages, and there are a few top-rated lodges in the area.
Nelson hums in summer with events typical of many seaside towns, but in January it offers the best of the Nelson Arts Festival. For further details visit Nelson City Council’s Festivals and Events page.
The Nelson -Tasman region has a strong focus on outdoor recreation, which influences much of what happens here.
For those keen on some shore-side excursions, Nelson City has a multitude of designated walking tracks, detailed in a booklet available from the Nelson City Council offices in Trafalgar St, and at the iSite Visitor Information Centre diagonally opposite in Miller’s Acre.
The region’s public art gallery – The Suter – Te Aratoi o Whakatu, holds a valuable collection of works by regional artists, and also has a varied exhibition programme.
Every Saturday the Nelson Market in Montgomery car park in the central city offers arts, crafts, food, clothing, jewellery and local fashions to the beat of a myriad of musicians.
The World of Wearable Art and Collectable Car Museum in Quarantine Rd, Annesbrook (near Nelson Airport) pays homage to the Nelson birthplace of the internationally renowned wearable art awards. Costumes and garments are featured in one exhibition space in the complex, and a car museum alongside displays classic cars.
The Nelson Provincial Museum Pupuri Taonga O Te Tai Ao in Trafalgar St. provides information on the natural and human history of Nelson. Gallery space upstairs hosts visiting exhibitions, including touring exhibitions of national significance.
Movies are screened in the multi-screen State Cinema in the central city, and art house films are screened at the Suter Cinema.Scroll