Easter weekend we took a small roadtrip to Nelson, about 1.5 hours drive from Picton. We knew it was going to be busy so we arranged lodging ahead of time for Saturday and Sunday night at the backpackers (similar to a hostel). We arrived there Saturday morning and went straight to the market in Montgomery Square that we had heard so much about. It was full of cool produce, food stalls, and great NZ made clothing. It was so busy that it was difficult with John's stroller, but we made it work. We had lunch in the car and then made our way to the backpackers to check in. What we found was a cool 'hippie' backpackers, they had signs all over about conservation and even had a compost/worm farm outside, oh, and no TV :)
We heard that there was a great park and beach nearby so we went for a bit of a drive and let John have a good play at the park- they even had a huge stone train!
Sunday morning we wanted to go to the Sunday markets, but because of Easter they were both closed. We had already walked into town and saw a sign for a hike that we thought might be nice. Another woman with a stroller went by and they said it was ok to do with a stroller (although theirs was a cool mountain buggy, not like our little umbrella stroller!) We did make it to the top of the steep slope, which was paved most of the way. The view from the top was gorgeous, and the mountains were capped with snow- that means winter is on the way! We took a different route back down and John walked the whole way and then slept in the car for almost 3 hours.
That afternoon we kept driving out to the start of the Abel Tasman walkway along the coast. I have to give Jeff some credit here for doing ALL of the driving on the narrow, windey, steep etc etc etc. roads! When John woke up we had just arrived at a beach area and John went wading in the water in his boots and T-shirt. The sand bar extends a long way out where we were and there were tractors with boat trailors on them going out to retrieve the boats when the tide was out, something cool for both boys to watch!
After a busy day we stopped in town and got fish-n-chips for dinner before it was back to the backpackers for sleep.
It was a good weekend away full of beautiful sights and nice people, but we were happy to get back to our sleepy little town.
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