Finally, the sun re-emerges, although there were a few showers during our drive north to Nelson. Here, we tested the local coffee, then visited the austere, grey cathedral, which was surprisingly full of colourful stained glass inside.
Nelson has a reputation for blue sky and sunshine, and it didn't disappoint. We also strolled around the Queen's Gardens before continuing along the north coast, headed for the gateway to the Abel Tasman National Park in Motueka.
The afternoon was spent looking at a gallery displaying the results of glass manufacture by a Swedish couple - amazing work, but not cheap! Then, on to Rabbit Island, where we enjoyed a walk along a huge beach, accompanied by lots of locals enjoying the sunny weather at the weekend, and black oystercatchers, getting their feet wet in the surf.
Then, a bit more culture, in the form of the art and sculpture of the Bronte Gallery - again, rather expensive, but also this time, not to our taste. However, we enjoyed a long chat with the 'artist in residence' and bought a pot of organic manuka honey!
Tea was provided by the Shed One Cafe at Mapua wharf, where kids were throwing themselves off the jetty into the blue water and ice creams were being consumed in the sun.
It was then only a stones throw to Motueka, where we have a nice room in a Victorian house, complete with stone fireplace.
Dinner in the garden, in our shorts, with a cold beer - most welcome. The cat enjoyed our smoked fish as much as we did!
Tomorrow, we leave early to go sea kayaking north of here in the Abel Tasman park. We return on Wednesday evening then have a drive to Picton for the night. So, you may not hear from us for a few days. Bye for now.... At least the forecast is good this time and the azure sea and white beaches beckon!