Adventure, beauty, excitement what better place to get close to God’s heart than in the midst of His creation?
Nelson – Tasman, New Zealand
Situated at the top of New Zealand’s South Island, Nelson and Tasman are two sister provinces with a treasure trove of natural beauty and adventure sports.
During your time here there will be many opportunities to experience all that this region has to offer. Check out some of the highlights below.
A good day in Nelson would include visiting the Saturday market, getting some dumplings to go and browsing what the local artisans have on offer. Stop by Kush or The Kitchen for your espresso fix or head over to Burger Culture at the top of Trafalgar street and grab a bite while the Jazz Festival is in full swing. Finish the day off with a stroll along Tahuna beach and enjoy those long summer evenings we get down here in New Zealand.
If you love beaches you’ll be spoiled for choice here! Nelson is made up of a series of bays which makes for really calm swim-able beaches. The closest beach is Tahuna beach which can often resemble a lake in terms of calmness. Tahuna is great for swimming and walking (go to dog beach down the end if you love admiring pooches). Its also popular with stand up paddle boarders and kite surfers alike. A local’s tip is to visit Raglan Roast cafe over the road from Tahuna beach for the best and cheapest coffee in Nelson.
If golden sand and azure waters are your thing head out to Kaiteriteri (45 min) on the edge of the Abel Tasman National Park. Wherever you choose to go, make sure you lather up with sunblock. The sun in New Zealand is much harsher than other places in the world due to the thinner ozone layer above the country. You’ll be surprised just how quickly you burn!
Abel Tasman National Park
Abel Tasman National Park is considered the jewel of the region and attracts visitors from all over the world. There are tons of great ways to enjoy the park. Hiking the whole thing will take 5 days, but there are many shorter hikes to attractions within the park like Cleopatra’s pool, a natural rock water slide. You can even walk in a few hours and catch a ferry back or rent some kayaks and explore from the sea.
Nelson itself is surrounded by hills with plenty of opportunity for casual walks, hikes and mountain biking. For serious hikes, head out of town an hour or so and you will reach Nelson Lakes National park. There you will find plenty of moderate to hard level hikes that will even get you into the snowline during the cooler months. Download the AllTrails app to learn about all the hikes in the area. Drive a little further and you’ll reach Rainbow Ski Area, a small but fun ski field.
One local’s tip is to always make sure you check the weather before you head out. Being on an island makes the weather really unpredictable and can change in a matter of hours. Oh and if you hear a local talking about tramping, they aren’t trying to be rude, that’s kiwi speak for hiking!