We got to Nelson (a city and a region) quite early in the day and had a nosy around. Nath got his hair cut and then we went to the local swimming baths where you could pay $3 for just a hot shower. It's known as New Zealand's sunniest city as it has the highest amount of sunshine hours per year- and it was lovely when we were there- just one little bit of rain for not very long! It is also New Zealand's oldest city. To be honest though there wasn't much going on in the city. It was pretty small, a few streets of shops, cafés, restaurants etc. In the afternoon we went on a little walk to the Centre of New Zealand from Botanic Gardens, where the first game of rugby was played in New Zealand. From the top of the hill there was the trigonometric point and marker of the centre of New Zealand and there were good views over the surrounding mountains and parks, as well as the city.
For the night we stayed in New World (a NZ supermarket) car park. It was right near the centre which was handy and right at the supermarket if you needed anything! Really good of a supermarket to let campervans to stay!
On the18th there was the local Saturday Market from 8am so we headed to that after breakfast. We had a nosy around at the different stuff people were selling- foods, jewellery, clothes and other bits and bats. It was a pretty small market though. I bought a Maori fishhook necklace meaning strength, determination, good luck and safe passage over water. After the market we set off to Abel Tasman National Park.