About the Nelson Tasman Region
Including Motueka, Kaiteriteri, & Golden Bay
Nelson Tasman, the geographical centre of New Zealand, is a region renowned for warm sunshine, fine beaches, lakes, mountains and native forests. The City of Nelson is large enough to offer all the services and amenities of a large city yet is small enough to be intimate, welcoming and friendly.
Nelson Tasman Sunshine! Great Weather All Year Round
The Nelson Tasman region is also known for having the highest number of sunshine hours of anywhere in New Zealand. Add to this the attraction of fine foods, superb wines, an innovative craft industry, spectacular scenery and traditional Kiwi hospitality and you can understand why the Nelson Tasman region is a place to which holiday makers flock all year round.
To see how great the weather really is in Motueka and Nelson, check the weather forecast for the coming week on the Meteorological Service of New Zealand www.metservice.com.
Golden Bay & Farewell Spit – Over Takaka Hill
For other natural wonders in the area visit the crystal clear Waikoropupu Springs which hold the world record for the clarity of their fresh water, or descend Harwood’s Hole, which at 357 metres (1170 ft), is New Zealand’s deepest vertical shaft. For an easier adventure at the top of Takaka Hill, explore the marble and limestone Ngarua Caves and be amazed by the millions of stalactites & stalagmites.
Farther north, beyond Golden Bay is the unique Farewell Spit. Over 100 species of birds visit this area each year, some from as far afield as the Arctic circle – four wheel safaris into this area are becoming popular and the authorised tour operator is Farewell Spit Eco Tours.
To drive to the interesting village of Takaka from your Motueka boutique accommodation at Awatea Tasman Bay, takes about 1 hour (58 km). Takaka has some great cafés and galleries to meander through, and from here it takes about another hour’s drive to reach the beginning of Farewell Spit (40km).
Artists & Great Food
The Nelson region is well known for its skilled and innovative artisans, especially in pottery, glass making, bone carving and jewellery. Local restaurants can tempt the most discerning palate with their superb seafood including: mussels, scallops, oysters, seasonal whitebait, and many fish varieties.
Stay in the Centre of the Nelson Tasman Region
The best way to enjoy all or most of the activities around Motueka & Abel Tasman National Park, would be to base yourselves in the Motueka area for approximately three to four days (more if you want some leisure time after those strenuous daily adventures) at Awatea Tasman Bay’s boutique accommodation. We are only minutes from Kaiteriteri Beach (and water taxis to Abel Tasman National Park), as well as being just minutes off the main road to Takaka, Waikoropupu (Pupu) Springs, Golden Bay, Farewell Spit, and more. Awatea Tasman Bay is also convenient to a walk on the summit of Takaka Hill, part of the QEII Trust covenanted land in the area.Check Availability & Book Online »
Eating Out in Motueka
Just 10 mins from Awatea Tasman Bay!
Enjoy Lunch at Local Motueka Cafés
During the day, cafés in Motueka serve great breakfasts, lunches, morning and afternoon cakes, snacks, etc., along with espresso coffee and speciality teas. Stay a week and try a different café every day!
- Patisserie Royale, 152 High Street Motueka
- The Red Beret, 145 High Street Motueka
- Antonius European Bakery www.eurobakery.co.nz – European style breads, pastries, and cakes, made right here in Motueka. Address: 235 High Street Motueka
- T.O.A.D Hall www.toadhallmotueka.co.nz – also offering evening meals in summer and serving up wood-fired pizza & BBQ meals using locally sourced ingredients and free range meats. Address: 502 High Street Motueka, 03 528 6456
- Muses Café, 136 High Street Motueka
- Kai Waka Café, 194 High Street Motueka
- Church Lane Restaurant, 208 High Street Motueka
- The Smoking Barrel, 105 High Street Motueka
Evening Meals Served by Restaurants in Motueka
A delicious evening meal can be had at number of restaurants, taverns, and bistros in Motueka, just a 10 minute drive from your luxury Cottage accommodation at Awatea Tasman Bay. Here are a number you might like to try:
- Simply Indian www.motuekaindian.co.nz – consistently serving up tasty Indian meals no matter what you like (vegetarian dishes available). Address: 130 High Street Motueka, telephone 03 528 6364, take-away available
- Chokdee Thai Cuisine www.chokdee.co.nz – Thai, Malaysian, Chinese restaurant. Address: 109 High Street Motueka, telephone 03 528 0318, take-away available
- Sprig & Fern Tavern www.sprigandferntaverns.co.nz – specialty beers brewed in Nelson with gourmet pizzas, burgers and steaks. Address: Wallace Street Motueka (opposite i-Site), telephone 03 528 4684
- Elevation Restaurant www.elevationmotueka.co.nz – café with pizza, steak, fish and other seafood selections. Address: 218 High Street Motueka, telephone 03 528 6103
- Precinct Dining Co www.precinctdining.com – newly opened café and restaurant. Open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Address: 108 High Street Motueka, telephone 03 528 5332
- Armadillo’s Bar & Restaurant www.armadillosrestaurantsnz.com – generous meal portions and a good range of choices in the Post Office Hotel on the corner of High and Pah Streets. Address: 122 High Street Motueka, telephone 03 528 9890
To help you understand where many of these cafés & restaurants are, download the following handy PDF map showing approximate drive times from Awatea Tasman Bay.
Other Dining Options
Eating Out in Kaiteriteri & Marahau
Kaiteriteri is a 12 km (18 minute) drive from Awatea Tasman Bay, and is where you can book and catch a water taxi out into the Abel Tasman National Park. Further along Kaiteriteri-Sandy Bay Road (or via the shorter route on Riwaka-Marahau Road, 16.5 km, 25 minutes drive from Awatea Tasman Bay’s boutique accommodation) you’ll find the village of Marahau. Many of the kayaking tours depart from Marahau, and you can also begin walking into the Abel Tasman National Park from here! Here are two cafés you might like to try for lunch, or maybe dinner:
- Hooked on Marahau Café, Beer Garden & Restaurant hookedonmarahau.co.nz – opposite the beach in Marahau. Address: 229 Marahau Sandy Bay Road Marahau, telephone 03 527 8576
- Park Café www.parkcafe.co.nz – funky café located at the start of Abel Tasman Coastal Track in Marahau is open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, with pastas, seafood, and specialty pizzas. Address: 350 Harvey Road Marahau, telephone 03 527 8270
Eating Out in Mapua & Moutere
It is worth taking the 30 minute (28 km) drive, via the Ruby Coast Scenic Route, to Mapua Wharf from Awatea Tasman Bay’s luxury Cottage accommodation. There are some great restaurants, bars, and galleries, plus if you’re into cycling, you can catch a ferry from Mapua Wharf to Rabbit Island with many fun cycling trails amongst the pine tree plantation.
- Jester House Café jesterhouse.co.nz – award winning café in a lovely country setting, open daily for lunch. Address: 320 Aporo Road, Tasman, telephone 03 526 6742
- Jelly Fish Café and Bar www.jellyfishmapua.co.nz – modern mediterranean influenced cuisine located right on the water’s edge, serving breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Address: Shed 1 Mapua Wharf Mapua, telephone 03 540 2028
- The Apple Shed Café and Bar www.appleshed.co.nz – also located on the water’s edge in Mapua, has great local fish & seafood offerings and is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Address: Shed 1 Mapua Wharf Mapua, telephone 03 540 3381
If you are looking for a rural retreat, try the co-operative run café & restaurant at Riverside Community, which is located in Lower Moutere (about a 20 minute, 16 km drive from Awatea Tasman Bay). Or perhaps you’re interested in sampling some crafted brew made from the locally grown hops – then Upper Moutere (a 29 km or 30 minute drive) is definitely worth checking out.
- Riverside Café Restaurant www.riverside-cafe.co.nz – country-style food using free-range, organic, and community grown produce, they are open for lunch every day and dinner on Saturday night. Address: 289 Main Road Lower Moutere, telephone 03 526 7447
- Moutere Inn www.moutereinn.co.nz – New Zealand’s oldest pub specialising in really good pub food and offering a huge range of local wines, cider & New Zealand brewed beers, they are open for lunch and dinner Wednesday to Sunday. Address: 1406 Moutere Highway, Upper Moutere, telephone 03 543 2759
Activities & Things To Do
Stay at Awatea Tasman Bay’s boutique accommodation and enjoy some of the following activities that are based in the Motueka and Abel Tasman National Park area:
- Mountain Biking – within 18 mins (www.kaiteriterimtbpark.org.nz)
- Playing Golf – within 10 mins (www.motuekagolf.co.nz, www.tasmangolfclub.co.nz)
- Fly Fishing – within 5 mins (www.nzfishing.com)
- Wine Trail – within 5 mins (winenelson.co.nz, www.baytoursnelson.co.nz)
- Craft Breweries & Pubs – within 8 mins (www.beertourist.co.nz, www.hopfederation.co.nz)
- Visit Clay Artists – within 15 mins (www.nelsonpotters.co.nz/profiles/)
- Moutere Artisans – within 30 mins (www.moutereartisans.co.nz)
- Find a bargain & sample local produce at a weekend market – Saturdays in Nelson (www.nelsonmarket.co.nz) and Sundays in Motueka (motuekasundaymarket.co.nz)
- Horse Treks – within 30 mins (www.nelsonhorsetreks.co.nz, www.horsetreksnz.co.nz)
- Be amazed at WOW (World of Wearable Art & Classic Car Museum) – within 50 mins (www.wowcars.co.nz)
- Rabbit Island Cycling – within 30 mins (www.trailjourneysnelson.co.nz, www.wheeliefantastic.co.nz)