Centre of New Zealand, Nelson

4.5
#1 of 6 in Sightseeing in Nelson-Tasman Region
Landmark Tourist Spot
Take a stroll along one of New Zealand's most popular walks at Centre of New Zealand. Begin at Hardy Street East for the full experience--including the Botanical Reserve that, in a past life, was the site of the country's first-ever rugby game. You'll head uphill to the summit, which benefits from interpretative panels identifying the features of Nelson's landscape as you gaze out at the panoramic views. Note that this isn't the actual geographical center of the country; the site's name comes from the process of mapping New Zealand in the 1870s, when John Spence Browning, Chief Surveyor of Nelson, was asked to begin the task of surveying the country's topography using geodetic trig points. Browning started by using the hilltop as the central point for his work. For travelers who use our international travel planner, Nelson holidays become easier to arrange, with trips to the Centre of New Zealand and other attractions mapped out and timetabled.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating
545 reviews
Google
4.4
TripAdvisor
  • We did not really plan to visit this place but were wandering around Nelson when we spotted a sign for the 'Centre of New Zealand' and an arrow pointing along the river. It didn't give any indication ...  more »
  • A must for anyone in this area. It is a hike but well worth it. The views are wonderful and it is a great experience.  more »
  • wonderful walk on a great day and you could take up a picnic to chill out. just a nice stroll from centre of town if interesed in walking  more »
Google
  • Great view of Nelson region. Good walk up the hill to get there, even better going down. Couple paths to take and different things to see. Worth a trip if your in the area
  • Another must see in Nelson, hill isnt high at all and the view on a clear day is great - 360degree mountains and sea and of course the town. The monument is quite cool but i went here for the view! Information signs show you the names of main peaks in Abel Tasman national park behind Nelson.
  • Accidentally found this place because of a sign near the house I was staying in. Out of curiosity I followed it down the street and discovered a great little gem in Nelson! There is a little monument noting the rugby pitch was the first place rugby was playing in NZ! If you cross the pitch, you will find the beginning of the steep and winding trek up to the top where the “Centre” of NZ is located. The hike up is a bit more strenuous than it first seems and you will need at least 10-15mins, depending on fitness level, to get up there. But, the view is well worth the sweat, groans, and muscle-aches! Turns out the “Centre” is not the actual geographical center of NZ, but rather refers to the where the geographical surveys originate. Nevertheless, it is a great hike, a beautiful view, and a neat little place to say you’ve been…
  • 30mins walk from sportsfield. But really nice view from the top. Good exercise.
  • Lovely park, great place for a picnic on a sunny day. Lay yourself down under the shade of one of the many large oak trees and relax or, for a bit of exercise, take a hike up to the Centre of New Zealand and a view of the city.

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Where to stay in Nelson

Nelson has the range of accommodations you would expect to find in a modern city in a great location. More upmarket hotels line the river and cluster in the city center. Budget-minded travelers will also find a number of hostels and motels here. On the outskirts of the city there are more motels, RV parks, and campsites, offering great options for those interested in outdoor excursions and city day trips.
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