From March through to May, the temperatures are still pleasant, the sea is still warm and the days are calm with blazing golden hues at both sunrise and sunset.

The light is just perfect for photographers and artists, as is the abundance of wildlife that come out to play in the autumn sun. Fur seal sightings become more common, which when combined with the more settled weather in comparison to other seasons, makes it one of the best times of year for boat cruises and scenic flights.

Nelson Tasman is particularly beautiful in autumn as vineyard leaves turn golden and trees ready themselves to shed their leaves. Cycling trips around the wineries are popular, especially earlier in the season during harvest, when the vines are still full and a bright shade of green. You can easily spend an afternoon or two exploring cellar doors and vineyards and eating at one of the region’s many award-winning restaurants.

A range of extraordinary festivals are scheduled in the Autumn events calendar, and are centred around celebrating the regions artisanal talent, such as MarchFest and Beer Week. Later in the season, the Easter holidays are a good time to get away and explore our region with the family and other highlights include the Mapua Easter Fair, the Kaiteriteri Gold Half Marathon, and the Heritage Festival. The popular Nelson Fringe Festival is also on at this time of year, although not annual.

The main surge of holidaymakers may have departed, but locals consider autumn to be our regions best kept secret. The weather is pleasantly calm, the sea remains warm from the festive season sun, there are still plenty of events and festivals on offer, and all of the outdoor summer attractions are still in full swing.

Autumn in Nelson Tasman NZ

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During Autumn, the days tends to be warm, but the evenings and mornings are slightly cooler. It is a good idea to pack shorts and t-shirts for the days activities, and a warm top and trousers for the evenings. A lightweight jacket may come in handy on slightly milder days. The autumn sun is still powerful, so sunglasses, sunscreen and a sunhat are essential.