Ahhh, Brooke and I are adventuring again. Having this kind of friend is SOUL ENRICHING. On my visit back home to NZ for a month, we planned a weekend to Nelson and booked Rabbit Island Glamping for our accomodation.
I flew down to Nelson on Friday morning as Brooke was already down there for work. The weekend starts off on a good note as I am seated by an [off duty] pilot on the plane!!! Those who know me, know how terribly obsessed I am with aeroplanes (how the heck do they stay in the air? why can we still feel turbulence and the questions go on)… however, I didn’t find out that he is a pilot until 10mins before we landed and my brain went completely blank with aaaaaall the questions I would have for a pilot! Once landed, I met Brooke and as we were driving towards our first destination of the weekend, we saw a peanut butter factory street sign so of course, we followed that. We ended up at the Pics Peanut Butter factory and after buying an absolute assortment of things from their gift shop, we had the most perfect timing when Pic himself came down from his office and walked past us, we couldn’t give up this photo opportunity! SO great to meet him in person as two huge peanut butter fans that we are, not even joking. After that high, we went to our accomodation to check in, unpack our luggage and get ready for the rest of the afternoon. We had a good look around the site and our first time “glamping” was a treat for sure! I don’t think I could do camping after this! We were staying in the only tent on the premises and the rest were little one bedroom huts. There were two shared bathroom facilities which were so clean and modern, unlimited flannels and towels, body wash, hand wash etc provided. There was also an outdoor shower and bath and we took advantage of the bath a couple of times because did you even go glamping if you didn’t get a bath pic?!? [no]. The shared kitchen was also so well done, providing bread, spreads, marshmallows to toast, nuts, the list goes on. Then we were off again to the Riwaka Resurgence. About 60km from Nelson, we were treated to a short walk through lots of greenery and native birds chirping to crystal clear waters of the Riwaka Resurgence. Its so stunning, words and pictures don’t do it justice. I only paddled in the shallows of the water but Brooke jumped into the water which we heard stays at around -9degrees all year round [I have read differing numbers online though, so who knows]. Next we were off to Kaiteriteri beach, a 20min drive from Riwaka Resurgence. The golden sand and warm water blew my mind and eyeballs. What a beautiful place! I’ve bucket listed to stay at the campsite right opposite the beach one day, the vibe in Kaiteriteri just screams summer. Ice creams, jandles, burger bar, boats…. I loved it! Brooke and I sat on the beach for a while before hunger took over
us me and we had an early dinner of burgers and L&P looking over at the beach. Absolute blissssss. I took a picture of that [attached below] and every time I pass it on my phone, I get a real nostalgic feeling. Before we headed back to our accomodation for the night, we booked a boat trip around a bit of the Able Tasman for the next afternoon. The end of our night was watching the sunset from outside our tent and looking at the many pictures we took on our first day in this frickin beautiful place.
After an absolute terrible sleep [lol wtf I thought we were staying in luxury?!] with only the smallest amount of wind blowing our tent around like we were in a blizzard on top of a mountain, we were kept awake most the night. I also had to do the tent to bathroom run at 4am, luckily Ihaia was awake on the other side of the world with it being 4pm there so I called him to accompany me to the bathroom in the scary dark, lol! We started the day with an outdoor bath *ahhhh the tranquility* before we headed to Alberta’s for breakfast which is in the picturesque Mapua Wharf. We halved pork belly and french toast and had one of the top three breakfasts of our lives there! I also had theeee most refreshing mint and berry tea which I am definitely going to try re-create. We then hit the road North-East of Nelson, heading towards Cable Bay, hoping to do a walk there. When we arrived, we discovered that the walk was closed due to the current Nelson fires burning. We appreciated the view anyway, a beautiful stone beach surrounded by mountains and clear waters and dipped our feet in before we got an ice cream [Kapiti feijoa & pear sorbet YAS NEW ZEALAND] and were off on a 40min drive inland to Pelorus bridge/river. Is everything at the top of the South Island this beautiful because we are yet to be disappointed! The bridge gives such a nice view down the river, we had a look before we headed down and set ourselves up on a comfy rock [is that even poss] and spent awhile eating shapes and taking in the scene. From here, we drove aaaall the way back to Kaiteriteri which was just under 2 hours and got on the boat for our little sail around the Able Tasman. WELL. Weren’t we in for a surprise… it was soooo windy in Kaiteriteri and before we got on the boat, we did ask the ticket lady if it was going to be very bumpy out there. She advised that it was going to be bumpy but not very bumpy. HA, as soon as we were out of the bay we were thrown about. The lady was quick to come back to us and apologise as the weather had got worse since they were last out there. We sat down the bottom of the boat and within the first 10 minutes, the people sitting up the top were coming down fast, soaked and not looking too well! We had 90 minutes of this and no option to get off the boat as it was the last one for the day. After the first 30-ish minutes, we were cracking up at how stupidly bumpy it was and it was just getting more hilarious as the time went on. We’re glad we can laugh in these situations and not get upset! The boat stopped twice to let on people at different bays to get back to Kaiteriteri and the most we saw of the Able Tasman were those two bays, which we don’t even know the names of! Oh and we did see Split Apple Rock for about 3 seconds and a couple of seals as the boat tipped and turned in the swells. Back on land, we put our feet in the ocean and got some fresh air before we headed to dinner. Now you know its summer when your feet and shoes are full of sand and you head out for dinner anyway! We went to Smoking Barrel in Motueka. We shared a whole lot of plates and every one was delicious. From corn to pork belly to seasoned veggies. Yuuuummm!
A sad morning as it was our last morning waking up in paradise. After checking out, and brushing our teeth in an outdoor sink *glamp life*, we headed back to Alberta’s to grab a couple of things out their cabinet for a takeaway breakfast. We were off to our first stop of the day, Te Waikoropupu springs. These springs are the largest in New Zealand and contain some of the clearest water ever measured. No-one is allowed to touch or take the water here and the facts on this place are amazing! Definitely worth a visit if you are ever around the area. We then went to check out Kaihoka Lake and after a short bush walk, we found a clearing to the water where we were the only ones there. New Zealand is just beautiful. Heading back through Golden Bay, we decided to stop and get out the car and we came upon this beach where literally all the rocks were sparkly! What the heck! Actually, I’m going to Google this now as to WHY. *Ok, had a quick google and nothing immediately came up*. Brooke took some home so if you want to see, just ask her, lol. Coming back through to head out to the airport for our flight back to Wellington, we stopped at Little Kaiteriteri and took in the beach oooooonce more. I want to say “thank you Nelson” but during our whole weekend in “Nelson” we didn’t actually set foot in Nelson city! We definitely kept to the outskirts and there is still so much more to see! I FIZZED during this time away, so glad we did this, saw what we did and made lots of new memories. I’ve only got good memories and experiences to speak about and there is no doubt that I’ll be back. You always have favourite places… and this is now one of mine!