Nelson self-drive tours are the best ways to get to the places you want, at the pace you want. The only schedule you have to follow is yours, so arrange Nelson car hire from our extensive vehicle fleet and set your own course!
On the other hand, you may want to do a series of day trips from your Nelson base. If that’s the case, one place you really should take yourself to is Te Waikoropupu Springs, a naturally occurring system of freshwater springs located in the Golden Bay area. At just over 100 kilometres from Nelson, it’s an easy day trip or a short stage in a multi-day self-drive tour. As you travel, you’ll see some of the most eye-catching scenery in the South Island and drive near areas such as Rabbit Island, North West Nelson Conservation Park and the Riwaka Resurgence. .
When you arrive at Te Waikoropupu Springs, the first thing you’ll notice is the extreme clarity of the water. In fact, they are some of the clearest natural waters in the world; horizontal visibility is approximately 63 metres which is a world record for a body of fresh water. The largest of the Springs is about 40 metres across but there are a number of smaller springs too, and they’re all stunning.
As well as being famous for the clear water, Te Waikoropupu Springs are also renowned for the amount of water discharged from the eight main vents; approximately 14,000 litres of water are produced by the springs each second, which is approximately the equivalent of the water it takes to fill 40 bathtubs! This makes Te Waikoropupu Springs some of the largest anywhere in the world.
As beautiful as the water looks, please don’t touch it. Contact with the water is prohibited as the springs are a sacred treasure to local Maori. As a visitor, you can walk along the boardwalk to view the water from several angles. You’ll also see native plants and fish in the water including salmon and brown trout. At the beginning of the walk, interpretation panels explain the history of Te Waikoropupu Springs as well as their cultural significance to local Maori. There is plenty of parking as well as toilets and sitting areas where you can rest up and take in the beauty of it all.
Te Waikoropupu Springs is one of many places to explore on your holiday. No matter where you plan to go, you’ll need a great vehicle to do it in. Summer is coming and demand will be high, so contact us now and secure the vehicle you want for your self-drive tour of our beautiful region!