We are spoilt for choice when it comes to walking tracks in Nelson. So many amazing bush walks and views on offer and all right in our backyard. Within minutes you can go from the centre of town to lush, green native bush. Here are a few Nelson walking tracks to get you started.

Maitai Caves

This walk is roughly 3 hours return (13km) and up the very end of the Maitai Valley Road, park by the water reserve. No dog on this one sorry. From the car park you walk along a 4wd track for about 15 minutes, on your left is your first stream crossing. The rest of the track weaves in and out of the forest before you reach the bottom of the caves hill. Short and sharp, ten minutes has you to the mouth of the cave. You are able to go into the cave but be safe. Take a torch, don’t go in alone and wear sensible footwear as it is very slippery. Return the same way.

Centre of New Zealand (Botanical Hill)

Geographically (close anyway) the centre point of New Zealand, this lovely walk offers beautiful views over Nelson and the port. The walk stars from Botanical Reserve which is located on the corner of Milton and Hardy Streets. There are several options taking you to the top of the hill and all are short and sweet. The track is wide and suitable for buggies and prams although it is rather steep, if pushing one you might like a good level of fitness. Once at the summit you can return the same way, or descend the back of the hill ending in the Maitai Valley and following the road back to your vehicle. If you are up for a longer walk there is an added hour option. From the summit follow the signs to the Sir Stanley Whitehead Reserve. This track takes you along the face of the Malvern Hills and onto a zig zag track which pops you out by Founder Park. Follow Milton Street back to your car.

Tantragee Loop

Drive up Brook Street and park in the car park at the very start of the Tantragee Road. Set off from the sign indicating the Tantragee walkway. The first part of this 45 minute walk is a reasonable climb, weaving in and out of native trees. Once at the top you will pass through a stile, carry on straight through and do not take the track to your right. After a few hundred metres you come to a road, you want to head back down the hill on the gravel road. Shortly on your right you will see a track called Old Codgers, enter and continue on this track till you reach Brook Street, turn left and you have a short walk back to the car. You may take your dog on this walk. Old Codgers is a very popular Mountain Bike track so keep an eye out for bikes.

The Grampians

This mecca of walking tracks has so many on offer, have a look at the link for all the options. The classic Grampians Walk starts at the top of Collingwood Street and is signposted. It’s pretty much straight up a zigzag path, plenty of seats and views along the way. The track is a mix of walking track and 4wd Road. The summit is the Television Repeater Station. There is also a viewing platform and toilet located near the summit. This track is approximately 5km return and will take about 1.5 hours with views that will more than reward you for all that hard work.


The start of this one is right at the top of Marsden Valley Road just before the quarry. Start the sign, through the entrance way and over the little wooden bridge over the stream. In about 100m you will reach a gravel 4wd Road, turn right. Follow on up until you reach the first skid site, take the road to your right and follow this right the way up. Almost at the top of the hill you will turn right again off the main track and onto a smaller 4wd track. This will take you to the Paragliding take off point, amazing views and also a toilet. There are two seats to soak in the views from. Return the same way. The walk is 8km return and approximately 2.5 hours Dogs are allowed on this one too. Extremely popular with walkers, runners and bikers.

If you require maps for any of these walks you can visit the friendly folks at the Nelson i-SITE, located at the Millers Acre Car Park in Nelson City. They can also add on extended loops or help you to choose which option might suit you best.

Many of our walks are shared pathways, for cyclists and walkers alike. Remember to be kind and respectful to one another. It’s also a good idea to let someone know where you are going. Take a cell phone with you, plenty of water and snacks, dress for the conditions. Better to take a warm jacket or rain coat with you and not need it than the other way around.

Happy trails.

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Brent Palmer – Professional Real Estate Consultant

About the Author: The above article on Nelson Walking Tracks was written and provided by Brent Palmer, a local leader in the field of Richmond and Nelson Real Estate sales, marketing, advanced technology for home selling, and social media. You can contact Brent Palmer here, or at 027 544 9921.

He has helped many people buy and sell homes in the Nelson, Stoke and Richmond areas for years, and would love the opportunity to help you as well.

Thinking of selling your home? I have a real passion for helping people sell their homes in our Nelson and Tasman Region, as well as the marketing, social media & advanced technology for home selling that goes along with it. I’d love to have the opportunity to sit down with you discuss how we can work together to get you the best price.

I help people buy and sell real estate in the following Nelson and Tasman  towns  & neighbourhoods: Wakefield, Brightwater, Hope, Appleby, Redwood Valley, Mapua, Stoke, Tahunanui, Atawhai and of course, Richmond and Nelson City. Connect with Brent on Facebook and pretty much everywhere else.

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