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Nelson, New Zealand – Day 2

March 2, 2023

Our alarms woke us for the first time this trip at 6:45am. Such a cruel way to wake up. We packed up and set out for Abel Tasman. 50 minute drive.

We made it to Kaiteriteri where we checked in and got our sea shuttle tickets. Shortly after we boarded our vessel. I have taken a lot of boats in the last two months.

Abel Tasman National Park

The boat took us north past split apple rock and a small colony of seals on Adel Island. We were dropped at Anchorage and immediately started the closest trail. It led to the top of one of the mountains where we had multiple viewpoints in each direction.

Our primary destination, though, was Cleopatra’s pool. It is a waterfall with a naturally carved slide in the rock. We crossed two streams to get there. Cold water.

Cleopatra’s pool was worth the hike. It had at least 4 levels as part of the waterfall, reminding me of the one I saw with Amy in Koh Phangan. Except I liked the temps in Thailand much more.

Josh and Theresa both slid down the natural slide, both of them making it look very painful so I passed. After getting dunked, Theresa somehow ended up going down backwards. She and I both thought she might drown. It made for a good laugh afterwards. I won’t embarrass her by putting the video here, but it’s fantastic.

We enjoyed the cold pool for about an hour before taking a different route back to Anchorage beach. Josh went and explored Torrent Bay while Theresa and I enjoyed the beach. Today was hot (78) and sunny making it perfect for the beach. Around 3:45 our boat picked us up and returned us to Kaiteriteri.


We went back to our hotel before driving to downtown Nelson for dinner. Fat Tui won based on reviews but we were pretty disappointed in their burgers. We walked the rest of Trafalgar Street, ending up at the cathedral perched atop the hill.

I lit a candle for my mom as this was the first church I had seen anywhere that lets the public light one in Asia or NZ. Then I find Theresa and Josh in awe over the size of some of the monstrous trees on the church grounds. They had a couple redwoods and blackbutt gums, the latter reminding us of the rainbow trees in Hawaii.

Everything in Nelson was closed except for the restaurants, and those closed around 730 or 830pm. It seems obvious why every kiwi we meet is kind and happy. They appear to have a very high quality of life and work is not taken too seriously.

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