Flights to Nelson

Explore a sunny, creative region loved for its vineyards, fresh food, national parks, lakes, beaches and outdoor adventures.

Nelson is an artistic seaside city at the top of the South Island. With high sunshine hours and a temperate climate, the Nelson Tasman region has attracted talented food producers and creative thinkers for generations. Surrounded by national parks and the sparkling waters of Tasman Bay, the people here have a natural connection with nature and a strong sense of community. For visitors this means a warm welcome, great food and wine, and a wide range of outdoor activities to enjoy in picture-perfect landscapes.

About our flights to Nelson

Nelson is within in easy reach of New Zealand's international airports. We offer non-stop domestic flights to Nelson from Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch, with connecting flights from most other regional centres. With all our domestic airfares you can choose seat, seat+bag, flexitime or flexidate fare types. Auckland to Nelson flight time is one hour 25 minutes, Wellington to Nelson takes 40 minutes and Christchurch to Nelson is a 55-minute flight.

Abel Tasman National Park promises blissful one-day and multi-day kayak and hiking adventures, complete with golden sand beaches, wildlife and native forest.

Hike in beautiful national parks

There are three national parks less than 1.5 hours by car from Nelson city. The Abel Tasman National Park offers one-day and multi-day kayak and  hiking adventures in a beautiful coastal setting with golden sand beaches, granite cliffs, wetlands, wildlife and native forest.  There are guided and self-guided tours to choose from, with bookable campsites and hikers' huts or the option of fully-catered lodge accommodation for luxurious overnight stays.

Nelson Lakes National Park has a more alpine setting, with trails that range from short lakeside walks through native forest to multi-day mountain treks for experienced hikers. The popular network of easy tracks around Lake Rotoiti delivers spectacular views across the water to pristine mountain landscapes.

Kahurangi National Park is New Zealand's second largest. Stretching from near Golden Bay to the rugged West Coast, it features easy to advanced tracks providing access to wild rivers, coastal native forests, craggy mountain landscapes and alpine herb fields. The most well-known trail is the four-to-six day Heaphy Track, one of New Zealand's nine Great Walks.

Discover local art and artisans

Nelson has always been a creative hub. It's home to longstanding cultural enterprises such as the Theatre Royal, the Suter Art Gallery and the Nelson Centre for Musical Arts. It's also where the internationally recognised World of Wearable Arts event began. And if you're looking for a magical experience, Nelson is where you'll find jeweller Jens Hansen, who created the 'one ring' for The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit movies. Maybe you can find your own ring of power?

If there's room in your luggage for some souvenir shopping, there's a fascinating range of locally-produced art, fashion and home décor accessories to discover. Galleries and craft shops are dotted around the region and the Nelson Market and Motueka's Sunday Market feature an irresistible selection of fresh foods, creative products and vintage objects. Visiting a market will put you in touch with the melting pot of cultures and strong community spirit of the Nelson Tasman region.

For peanut butter lovers of all ages, Nelson offers you the chance to visit the home of Pic's Peanut Butter. You can take a tour of the factory and have a go at making your own peanut butter to take home as a souvenir. Alternatively, you can find the full Pic's Really Good Peanut Butter range from their red and yellow striped marquee at the Nelson Market. 

Essential information

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Best time to visit Nelson

Nelson is one of the sunniest places in New Zealand and a true year-round destination. The coastal areas have mild winters and warm summers. Average daily highs range from 22°C in summer to 13°C in winter, with average lows about five degrees less throughout the year. Monthly rainfall is fairly even throughout the year, with a few more rainy days in winter. December to February, during long New Zealand holiday season, is the busiest time in Nelson.

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How much will it cost?

This will depend on your tastes and what you want to do. As a rough guide, not including air travel and hotels, you should allow about NZD $150 to $200 a day per person for food and entertainment.

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There are no mandatory vaccinations required for visitors to New Zealand.

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If you visiting Nelson from overseas you might need a visa to holiday in New Zealand, depending on where you're from and how long you're staying. See the visa-waiver list.

Cheap flights to Nelson

Auckland (AKL) to Nelson (NSN) 

1h 25m



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Wellington (WLG) to Nelson (NSN) 




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Christchurch (CHC) to Nelson (NSN) 




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*Flight times are based on the fastest route available.
**Indirect flights may also be available for this route.