Nelson, New Zealand

Overlooking Tasman Bay is Nelson, New Zealand, a lovely coastal city with a thriving art community and a rich culture uniquely its own. It has been said that everywhere you look in this part of New Zealand’s South Island is a picture postcard waiting to be created.

The varied landscape offers everything from snow capped peaks on the surrounding mountain ranges to the sparkling water of Tasman and Golden Bays. This natural beauty and diversity has been one of the main attractions for the many artists of all varieties who have visited or made their home here.

Nelson, New ZealandArt is the dominant theme throughout Nelson and this is evident during a stroll through the many galleries and craft shops found throughout the city. On Saturdays in the heart of Nelson City the Nelson Market offers shoppers a fantastic selection of locally crafted items ranging from tasty gourmet treats to beautiful handmade crafts.

Map of New ZealandThe area surrounding Nelson is also known for its fine wine with a near perfect climate for vineyards and rich fertile soil that combine to produce its many award winning wines. Tours of the Nelson wine country are offered by a number of tour operators who will introduce guests to the best of Nelson’s wine region.

In perfect harmony with the artistic ambiance of the city, dining in Nelson is no exception. Well known for the outstanding variety of fresh produce and delectable seafood produced in the region, many award winning dishes have been created by the chefs of Nelson’s numerous fine dining establishments. In keeping with the rich heritage and varied cultural influences, New Zealand cuisine is a delicious mixture of European, Asian and Polynesian with those dishes distinctly unique to New Zealand typically featuring salmon, lobster, abalone and other fresh seafood as well as lamb, venison and pork.

The known history of Nelson starts with the Maori who migrated to the island from Hawaiiki around 700 years ago. Two European explorers, Abel Tasman in 1642, and James Cook on three separate voyages during the 1770s, visited the area but neither stayed to explore the island. That came about in 1827 when French explorer Dumont D’urville landed in Tasman Bay and spent around a week exploring the area.

More Europeans followed after D’urville and the first settlement was established in the 1840s, offering the immigrants the chance for a new way of life, many purchasing land around Tasman Bay and Golden Bay. Many of the immigrants were from England and they brought with them their knowledge of farming and the traditions of their homeland.

Then in 1856 life became very exciting for the people of Nelson with the discovery of gold, copper and chromite. The mining boom brought about the construction of Nelson’s first railway as well as the accelerated growth of the community. The settlers also had a keen interest in education leading to the founding in 1870 of Nelson College.

Throughout Nelson’s history European tradition and culture have blended with the native Maori culture, evolving into the delightful mixture found today.

New Zealand

New Zealand








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