Port Nelson is one of the few towns on the South Island with marine services for yachts. So it’s an obvious stop for provisioning while attending to any necessary maintenance and hunting of boat parts. (Boats only survive on a steady diet of stainless hardware and exotic fibres –lines / sails / canvas / laminates etc.). We expected to spend at least three days here and thought it would be money well spent to pay for a slip in the marina so we could more easily come and go about our errands and ferry groceries and supplies to the boat. But no, there was no slip to be had; despite repeated phone calls and the apparently empty slips we saw each and every time we took the dinghy back and forth.
So the picture above is the view we had of Nelson for the week we eventually stayed. This is someone’s “bach.” The port is behind a five-mile-long narrow boulder bank. The only anchorage is in some very shallow water behind the bank. And as rare as a place to anchor is, so apparently is land to build your “bach.” As best we can tell (thanks Wikipedia) this uniquely Kiwi term is applied to a simple home with modest furnishings commonly used as a holiday home. The name is thought to have derived from “batchelor pad.” This example is on the lower end of what we’ve seen, but the median is not too many rungs up. Humble they may be, but some of the settings are stunning.