Nelson & Richmond

As the main urban hub of the top of the South, Nelson is a vibrant city. The Christ Church Cathedral looks over the city streets where you will find boutique shops, art galleries and alfresco dining.

Nelson City

Along Wakefield Quay, Nelson’s picturesque waterfront, you will find several restaurants with views across the harbour to the mountains. Top Tips for Visitors to Nelson City:

  • Visit a raft of local art studios and galleries including handcrafted jewellery, local fashion designers and craft food artisans
  • Explore the Nelson Provincial Museum – our regional museum
  • The Nelson Saturday Market is a must-visit from 8am – 1pm in Montgomery Carpark - filled with fresh local produce, art & crafts and a range of colourful characters.
  • Visit Founders Heritage Park – a historical village with fascinating displays, creative artisans and Founders own brewery and café will ensure a fun experience for all.
  • Experience Nelson’s history with a wander down the South Street precinct, New Zealand’s oldest preserved street.
  • Stroll through the peaceful Queens Gardens, or Miyazu Japanese Gardens named after Nelson’s Japanese sister city.
  • Walk 30 minutes to the Centre of New Zealand, the centremost point of the country with great views of the region.
  • Explore the Brook Waimarama Sanctuary where native forest regeneration and native birds abound.
  • Tahunanui Beach is a popular swimming beach just five minutes’ drive from the city centre, with some of the best kitesurfing in New Zealand and a host of accommodation, cafés, bars and family activities nearby.
  • Visit Nelson’s iconic art attraction – World of WearableArt™ and Classic Cars Museum - a world class collection of classic cars can be viewed alongside mind-blowing works of art that are wearable.
  • 20 minutes north of Nelson you can enjoy a coastal farm walk in Cable Bay, fly the Skywire, enjoy a scenic horse trek or quad bike adventure at Happy Valley Adventures


Richmond and Surrounding Areas

Richmond is an urban centre in Tasman District servicing the surrounding large rural population. Visitors based in Richmond can access cycle trails, wineries, craft breweries, art galleries, gardens and the district's three national parks easily as they are all within just over an hour's drive from Richmond. Top tips include:

  • Start of Tasman's Great Taste Cycle Trail
  • Mountain-biking in the Mt Richmond Ranges
  • Great beach, biking and outdoor activities at Rabbit Island
  • Visit the seaside resort village of Mapua
  • Visit the alpine village of St Arnaud and Rainbow Ski Field
  • Drive 50 minutes to enter Abel Tasman National Park
  • Gardens of the World
  • ASB Aquatic Centre
  • Saxton Field Sports Complex
  • Richmond Shopping Mall
  • Oxford Cafe

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Tips from locals for Nelson & Richmond

Involution mountain biking trail

There is a new mountain biking track at the end of Marsden Valley Road called Involution - steady climb zip-zags up through native forest to the ridge line overlooking Monaco and Tasman Bay towards the Mt Arthur ranges. Makes a good half day return walk and is dog friendly - just watch out for bikes on their way down.