North of the South Island NZ

The North of the South Island has a coastline defined by sounds, islands, and peninsulas, created when the sea flooded the valleys many many many years ago. Steep wooded hillsides, quite bays and small hamlets that are only accessible by boat. Water taxis, hiking trails, and the wilderness of Abel Tasman National Park. Plus the added bonus that Nelson is one of the sunniest places in New Zealand and the country’s self-proclaimed craft brewing capital. That all adds up to a very laid back and beautiful place.

Looking through thick foliage and ferns to an inlet on the Marlborough Sounds, with a small town, green valleys and mountains beyond, Havelock, New ZealandPeople exercise their dogs on the flats amongst tussocks of dry grass near the ocean on a Sunday morning, with snowy mountain peaks in the distance, Nelson, New Zealand

Looking through thick foliage and ferns to an inlet on the Marlborough Sounds, with small town of Havelock, green valleys and mountains beyond; People exercise their dogs on the flats amongst tussocks of dry grass near the ocean at Nelson on a Sunday morning, with snowy mountain peaks in the distance.

A silhouetted fern, the iconic symbol of New Zealand, Marlborough Sounds, New Zealand

A silhouetted fern, the iconic symbol of New Zealand.

A lone boat crosses the Marlborough Sounds which are often dotted with ferries and water taxis, steep forested mountains coming right down to the water, Havelock, New Zealand

A lone boat crosses the Marlborough Sounds which are often dotted with ferries and water taxis, steep forested mountains coming right down to the water.

A small blue and white weatherboard house with a cabbage tree out the front looking out over the ocean, Nelson, New Zealandyacht_on_blue_water_with_snowy_mountains_in_distance

A small blue and white weatherboard house with a cabbage tree out the front looking out over the ocean at Nelson.

With the tide out and the sea still and glassy, a couple walk on the beach, Nelson, New Zealand

With the tide out and the sea still and glassy, a couple walk on the beach at Nelson.

A busy cafe on a sunny Sunday morning on stilts over the water, a yacht in the water and snowy mountain peaks in the distance, Nelson, New Zealand

A busy cafe on a sunny Sunday morning on stilts over the water at Nelson, a yacht in the water and snowy mountain peaks in the distance.

Looking over ferns to one of the inlets on the Marlborough Sounds, the tide out in front of a small township nestled into the base of the mountains beside fertile valleys, Havelock, New ZealandSeagulls sit on the empty outside deck of a busy cafe overhanging the water, Nelson, New Zealand

Looking over ferns to one of the inlets on the Marlborough Sounds, the tide out in front of the small township of Havelock nestled into the base of the mountains beside fertile valleys; Seagulls sit on the empty outside deck of a busy cafe overhanging the water at Nelson.

Looking through a boat yard to a yacht on the water with snowy mountain peaks in the distance, Nelson, New Zealand

Looking through a boat yard to a yacht on the water at Nelson with snowy mountain peaks in the distance.

A hand-painted roadside sign for kiwifruit being sold straight from the farm, Takaka, New ZealandA trailer amongst woody kiwifruit vines selling the fruit through an honesty box, Takaka, New Zealand

A hand-painted roadside sign for kiwifruit being sold straight from the farm; A trailer amongst woody kiwifruit vines selling the fruit through an honesty box.

Kiwi fruit growing on woody vines, Takaka, New Zealand

Kiwi fruit growing on woody vines.

Children play in the sun outside a humble batch amongst the yellow gorse near the beach at Golden Bay, Tarakohe, New ZealandA heron on the sandy edge of the estuary at Totaranui Bay, the high cliffs above covered in dense forest and green ferns, Abel Tasman National Park, New Zealand

Children play in the sun outside a humble batch amongst the yellow gorse near the beach at Golden Bay; A heron on the sandy edge of the estuary at Totaranui Bay in the Abel Tasman National Park, the high cliffs above covered in dense forest and green ferns.

Bird footprints at dusk in the sand beside the estuary at Totaranui Bay, the cliffs above heavily forested with green trees and ferns, Abel Tasman National Park, New ZealandA weatherboard cafe sits on stilts over the water, Nelson, New Zealand

Bird footprints at dusk in the sand beside the estuary at Totaranui Bay in the Abel Tasman National Park, the cliffs above heavily forested with green trees and ferns; A weatherboard cafe sits on stilts over the water at Nelson.

A tree over hangs the estuary at Totaranui Bay in the strong early morning light, Abel Tasman National Park, New Zealand

A tree over hangs the estuary at Totaranui Bay in the Abel Tasman National Park in the strong early morning light.

A small and simple old batch (New Zealand for holiday house) right on the beach in a sleepy town between the yellow gorse flowers and the bright blue water of Golden Bay, Tarakohe, New Zealand

A small and simple old batch (New Zealand for holiday house) right on the beach in a sleepy town between the yellow gorse flowers and the bright blue water of Golden Bay.

Small ferns growing amongst green moss in the damp forest, Lyell, New Zealand Bright green ferns and dense trees overhang the rocky Wainui River in the Abel Tasman National Park with blue sky above, Abel Tasman National Park, New Zealand

Small ferns growing amongst green moss in the damp forest; Bright green ferns and dense trees overhang the rocky Wainui River in the Abel Tasman National Park with blue sky above.

Something found all over New Zealand: a swing bridge over a river leading into thick green forest on a walking trail, here leading to Wainui Falls, Abel Tasman National Park, New Zealand

Something found all over New Zealand: a swing bridge over a river leading into thick green forest on a walking trail, here leading to Wainui Falls in the Abel Tasman National Park.

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