We got up this morning ready to begin our beach visits. The plan was to go up to Collingwood for a Farewell Spit tour the next day,but tides wrong until Tuesday when tours restart. We have had such good weather with sunny days, but, as forecast it rained most of yesterday and poured hard all night, we had a couple of inches around Mabel this morning. A look at Pohara Beach this morning showed zero visibility where we wanted to go. Change of plan. Back over the hills, bit of shopping in Nelson and on to Richmond for a couple of nights and back here after the weekend.
We set off and the fields were no disappointment when it came to haze.
The Wicked Witch decided to take us on a short cut to the mountains along a gravel road for several miles. I saw a sign that said unsuitable for camper vans, Bear and Mabel had other ideas and obeyed the wicked witch, oh how things have come along between them, next thing she’ll be on his Christmas card list.........Yes dear. Same view from Harwood Lookout and the hair-pin bends seemed less sharp today.
On the other side of the mountains the haze was lovely. Yet again we watched an Australasian hawk fly over, one day, one day, one day, we will get to see one up close and personal..........please.
The outskirts of Nelson.
Nelson has a large hospital.
Into Nelson we were by water soon enough. Shopping done, we drove toward the harbour and saw hundreds of daffodils.
After ten years of fundraising and five years of rebuilding the Theatre Royal re-opened on the 31st of May 2010 offering the people of Nelson and the Tasman region a fully restored heritage auditorium alongside 21st century staging and front of house facilities. The oldest wooden theatre in the Southern Hemisphere has undergone a stunning restoration. The theatre has an all new enlarged flat stage area, a fully counterweighted flying system, new lighting and sound control systems, new dressing rooms, laundry and kitchen facilities. The public will enjoy the three hundred and fifty new seats in a climate controlled beautifully restored auditorium and enjoy the comfort of the foyer and bar.
The Theatre Royal, in 1917 and in 1998.
Originally the Theatre Royal was built in 1878 by C.W. Moore (who also built St Mary’s Convent and the first wooden buildings of Nelson College) on land owned by market gardener Samuel Bolton. The theatre was designed by Mr Bethwaite, of Bethwaite & Robertson and the Oddfellows, who had their club next door, financed the construction. The Theatre was built to seat eight hundred, but opened on the 18th of July 1878 with an audience of a thousand.
Nelson is a city on the eastern shores of Tasman Bay, and is the economic, cultural centre of the Nelson region and so much bigger than we had imagined. Established in 1841, it is the second-oldest settled city in New Zealand and the oldest in the South Island and was proclaimed a city by royal charter in 1858.
Nelson city is bordered to the west and south-west by the Tasman District Council and the north-east, east and south-east by the Marlborough District Council. The city does not include Richmond, the region's second-largest settlement. Nelson City has a population of around 46,437 ranking it as New Zealand's 12th most populous city and the geographical centre of New Zealand. When combined with the town of Richmond which has close on 14,000 residents, Nelson is ranked as New Zealand's 9th largest urban area by population.
Nelson is well known for its thriving local arts and crafts scene, Each year, the city hosts events popular with locals and tourists alike, such as the Nelson Arts Festival. The annual Wearable Art Awards began near Nelson and a local museum, World of Wearable Art now showcases winning designs alongside a collection of classic cars. If the rain continues, indoor things will be welcome.
Nelson marina was full of yachts, next stop the Japanese Gardens.
The roadsides were beautifully adorned with tree tulips.
Some lovely buildings.
Hillsides behind us, we saw a sign that showed us where the first game of rugby was played in New Zealand.
We liked this – Blossom House next to the Botanical Reserve.
On toward Richmond - a town, and the seat of the Tasman District Council, that lies eight miles south of Nelson in the South Island of New Zealand, close to the southern extremity of Tasman Bay. The town was first settled in 1842 and was named in 1854 after the town of Richmond on Thames near London. At the time of the 2006 Census the town had a population of over 14,000.
Although Richmond lies outside the boundaries of Nelson City, it forms part of the Nelson Urban Area for statistical purposes, and New Zealanders informally consider it part of Greater Nelson or the "Top of the South". The two unitary authorities co-operate for tourism-marketing purposes via "Latitude Nelson".
Across the bay was the ‘industrial’ bit.
Richmond is not a small town, we passed a trendy Mall.
As we pulled in to our campsite, our first California Lilac in a very long time.
ALL IN ALL AN ODD MIX WITH GREAT BITS