Melrose Cafe

Located in the ground floor of Nelson's grandest historic home, Melrose House, this shabby chic cafe offers traditional cakes and high teas. The elegant surroundings including beautiful park-like surroundings are pefrect for enjoying a coffee on the veranda plus beautiful brunches and lunches. Melrose Cafe is also the setting for private functions and weddings.  The service is warm and friendly. Book ahead to enjoy a traditional high tea, served at 2.30pm.

Corner of Brougham and Trafalger Street, Nelson. Phone (03) 548 9179 

Morri Street Cafe

For years this cafe has been a great family friendly spot for coffee, brunch, lunch. they've got the atmosphere just right, service always timely and fresh ingredients, baking and dishes. Right in the middle of town.

244 Hardy St, Nelson, 7010, Ph (03) 5488110

River Kitchen

Downtown, opposite the i-Site and opening onto the banks of the Maitai River, you'll find River Kitchen cafe. Relaxed dining with counter food and table service. PS Dogs are welcome to sit outside with you with dog water bowls, blankets available to patrons. 

81 Trafalgar Street, Nelson, Ph 03 548 1180

Broccoli Row

Plenty of vegetarian and gluten free options at Broccoli Row, tucked in behind the Pharmacy and Medical Centres.

Cnr of Collingwood Street and Hardy Street, Ph 03 548 9621 

East Street Vegetarian Café and Bar

More vegetarian options, served in very generous portions at East Street Vegetarian Café, with a super relaxed atmosphere and large garden space for outdoor dining. Colourful murals, plenty of travelers, great coffee and open until late when it becomes a band venue and bar. Staff are friendly and welcoming. 

8 Church Street, Nelson, Ph 03 970 0575

RED Gallery & Cafe

A unique combination of art gallery, gift shop and brightly lit cafe make this cafe a relaxed and creative space. 

1 Bridge Street, Nelson, Ph 03 548 2170

7010 Cafe

Quirky little coffee spot on the edge of town by the river. Interesting jewellery and gifts on display, great scones and counter food. Friendly service at this friendly little internet cafe with a youthful vibe.

15 Ajax Ave, Nelson, 7010 


Boat Shed Restaurant and Bar

The little white boat shed, jutting out over the water is a favourite venue for fine dining with the ultimate Nelson sea, mountain, sky view. Popular with the locals and travellers, you'll take a while to find a better sunset watching spot. Great wine list, professional service - the only down side is that parking can be tricky. Book ahead and consider trying the trust the chef menu. 

350 Wakefield Quay,Nelson, 7010 phone (03) 5469783


High end bar with restaurant to the rear. A favourite with the locals for it's fresh, tasty, Asian-fusion menu, great cocktails, relaxed atmosphere, friendly service.

296 Trafalgar Street, Nelson, Ph 03 539 0905

Nicola’s Cantina

If it's fresh, fast and tasty Mexican food you're after with perhaps a sneaky little margerita, come to Nicola’s Cantina. Great decor, bustling and happy service and very reasonably priced.  
6 Church Street, Nelson, Ph 03 548 8761


The Tides

Situated in the Trailways Hotel, The Tides offers an affordable fine-dining experience. River views, nice presentation, older crowd.

66 Trafalgar Street, Nelson, Ph 03 548 7049



Award winning restaurant, with an emphasis on fresh European style food and fine dining. Impressive wine list, tranquil dining room. Slightly on the pricey side for Nelson and great for celebrating a special night out.

284 Trafalgar Street, Nelson ph (03) 545 7191


Urban Eastery Restaurant and Bar

Popular with the locals, you can have a fresh tasty meal, drink a cocktail, meet friends for drinks at this stylish little bar. Open til late. Oysters a specialty and the espresso martinis are famously good. 

278 Hardy Street Nelson  phone (03)-545 7191

The Vic Brewbar

An offshoot of Mac’s Brewbar, a craft brewery in Wellington, The Vic is a gastro pub wiht a tasty menu and beers to match. 

Brewbar, 281 Trafalgar Street, Nelson, Ph 03 548 7631

Free House

Nelson’s free house pub, not affliliated with any brewery has been offering more than 800+ different beers since opening in 2009. Housed in a converted church with eclectic art on the walls, a log burner for winter, piano, board games and friendly service. Take your dog, grab a rug to sit on the grass, family friendly, bike racks and popular as a meeting spot for locals and travellers.

95 Collingwood Street, Nelson, Ph 03 548 9391

MaCashin's Brewery - Kitchen & Bar

Serving Great Coffee, Delicious Food & Crafted Brews. A-la-Carte menu. Cabinet food. Kids menus. Bottle Shop. Beer Garden. Brewery Tours. Beer Tastings. Bar. 

66 Main Road Stoke, Nelson, Ph 03 547 0329


Craft Beer Depot

Nelson’s premier craft beer destination. Showcasing exceptional beer from Nelson, NZ and abroad. Experience Nelson’s coolest little craft beer shop.

70 Achilles Ave, Nelson, Ph 03 548 2126



Fun things to do

Saturday Nelson Market 

The Nelson Market is famous for its longevity and high quality of its stalls. For more than 30 years, locals and visitors have enjoyed the food, arts, crafts and produce packed into a busy space behind the main street. Great for shopping and always a colourful, happy atmosphere, especially over the busy summer months. Pick up some flowers, baby clothes, greenstone, pottery or simply sample the many local offerings.

Saturday: 8am to 1pm, Montgomery Square, Nelson

World of Wearable Art (WOW) Museum and Classic Car Museum

Something for everyone here at this museum showcasing the award winning designs from previous wearable art shows.  Also a large classic car museum, interesting gift shop and cafe. Near Nelson Airport.

Cadillac Way Off Quarantine Rd, Nelson 7040

Founders Park

A replica display of Nelson's heritage with buildings from pioneer times, cafes, restaurants etc. Good for the whole family. Artisans have their workshops on site.  Visit the website for more. 

87 Atawhai Drive | Brooklands, Nelson 7010, 

Tahunanui beach and surrounds

The heart of beach culture in Nelson is the popular Tahunanui beach. Fabulous playground, shops and camp ground, plenty of swimmers, Stand Up Paddle boarders, mini golf, hyrdroslide, go Carts, dog walking areas, playing fields and tennis courts. 

Suter Art Gallery

Reopened and totally renovated in 2016, spend an hour wandering the art gallery and enjoying the extensive local art collection. Then visit the cute, glass walled cafe. Delicious food and views over the adjacent Queens Gardens.

Bridge Street, Nelson

Getting around Nelson

The NBus services cover most Nelson suburbs and regular connections between Nelson and Richmond. Services run Monday to Friday with a reduced service on Saturdays and Sundays but there are no services Public Holidays.

 Pick up an NBus timetable from the depot at 27 Bridge Street, the i-Site Visitor Centre or Nelson City Council, 110 Trafalgar Street.

For more information visit

  • More buses - NBus goes every 15 minutes between Nelson and Richmond at peak times
    (Monday to Friday 7-9am and 3-6pm)
  • NBus starts earlier and finishes later
  • New easy Fares Zone system - including free transfers within the same zone
  • Easy access for wheelchair users
  • Bikes on the bus - you can bring your bike on NBus with new racks that will carry two bikes at a time.