Superb weather, outstanding scenery, active adventures or lolling on the beach or meandering the art scene Nelson offers visitors a wealth of experiences that is hard to beat. The depth of choice and variety makes for an ideal friends and family holiday destination. There is something for everyone from active adventures where visitors skydive over the stunning Abel Tasman to slowly cycling your way around the Great Taste Trail. Nelson with its creative credentials is an ideal shopping location. It’s hard to beat an irresistible find and Nelson will not disappoint. Let’s get you inspired with the top sights in Nelson Tasman.
1. ABEL TASMAN NATIONAL PARK
SCENIC JEWEL IN THE CROWN OF NATIONAL PARKS
A gem of a park with the option of a brief taste of what the park has to offer due to its accessibility.
There are places to rock chute into pools, walks where the golden sand softly marks your footprints or wild remote places where wind sculptured rocks fascinate.
The walks are international favourites from Tonga Quarry to Medlands beach a mere 2 hour easy walk or multiple day tramps.
The park is an ideal introduction to the joy of natural spaces. Jaw-dropping views are guaranteed.
2. NELSON’S GREAT TASTE TRAIL
Great climate, great food and beverage producers. Foodie heaven is a saturated trail, soaked in the scent, taste and sight of fresh orchard road side stalls, vineyards and distilleries, artisan food producers marketing farm to plate goodies and scenery that belies the senses. Kaiteriteri Beach is beautiful and Mapua’s wharf precinct charming and the spooky Spooners railway tunnel a fun challenge all while gorging on Nelson’s gourmet food treats.
Make sure to attend the Nelson Arts Festival (spring) or Marchfest (March), check the various theatres and art galleries for openings, shows and performances.
For a population of less than 50,000 the place is jam packed with cultural happenings.
4. BEAUTIFULLY CREATED OBJECTS
ART & ARTISAN GALLERIES & STUDIOS
Nelson art and artisan goods reflect the landscape, a contemporary Pacifica edge and a willingness to challenge conventions. This is the place that created wearable arts and continues to foster creativity. Crafted goods, jewellery and visual objects bring visitors from all over the world in search of the unique, the special and heart stopping object. Nelson is where the largest numbers of working artists and galleries reside. Art in all its forms is represented. Painters, sculptors, glass-blowers, jewellers, writers and creators offer visitors a chance to experience art in a wide variety of forms When you visit a local market, gallery or studio and purchase a special object or find it is likely the artist is there to tell you the creation story.
5. MARKETS, WHERE LOCAL FOOD PRODUCERS REIGN
Nelson Saturday Market is the vetern with over 30 years of history and the Motueka Sunday market is not far behind. Farm to plate delights dominate the market with well known brands such as Pics Peanut Butter having their first success in the market. It is a culinary voyage of discovery for visitors and a hot favourite shopping destination with locals. It is not uncommon for celebrity chefs to personally open a pop up stall to road test ingredients and menu inspirations. Craft and art buffs will not be disappointed with an array of goods on display with the creators usually behind the till.
6. HERITAGE BUFFS
Interested in yesterdays and what happened before. Nelson has outstanding local museums to pique the interest of the most dedicated heritage buff. The story of transport and its role in modern Nelson is amusingly told at the Higgins Heritage Transport Museum or the small town of Collingwood with two museums. The premier museum of the district, Nelson Provincial Museum is housed in a glorious confection box of modern with the original heritage building (1899). The exterior is a thought provoking building and you are likely not to have even entered the glorious art space.
7. REGIONAL GEMS MAPUA AND TASMAN VILLAGE
Craftsmanship, funky ideas and always delicious foodie delights to tempt the palate. Nelson city is a hop, skip away from communities where the landscape is inspiration for glorious objects and the local farm to plate culture is showcased in local cafes and restaurants.
You’ll be blown away by the incredible craftsmanship of the nooks and crannies of Nelson.
8. NATURE, LANDSCAPES
DEEP NATURAL SPRINGS
The memorizing sight of deep blue welling spring water in a constant motion of swirls and currents captivates all ages. Flowing water is not boring when it is The Blue Springs (Golden Bay Te Waikoropupu Springs). The largest coldwater springs in the Southern Hemisphere. Nelson packs a punch with a varied landscape where contrast is the order of the day from the wind sculptured split apple rock and rugged Farewell Spit to walks among the moss and lush vegetation of Wainui Falls.
Nelson Tasman district is one of New Zealand’s favourite domestic destinations and rising star for overseas visitors, for more information about Nelson Tasman things to do … check out where to go and what to see.
BEST BITS TRAVEL GUIDE.