Heritage sites, houses and precincts

A number of key sites and properties within the city are recognised as having heritage significance and are noted within the Nelson Resource Management Plan.  Some are owned by Council and some by private groups or individuals

Heritage sites

Some important sites include

  • Church Hill (also known as Piki Mai)
  • Matangi Awhio (also known as Auckland Point)
  • Botanics Reserve and the Centre of New Zealand
  • Early Settlers Memorial
  • Wakefield Quay and Rocks Road Chain
  • Isel House and Park
  • Broadgreen Historic House and Samuels Rose Garden
  • Queens Gardens
  • Albion Square
  • Anzac Park
  • South Street heritage precinct

Heritage buildings

Due to the early settlement of Nelson, a wealth of heritage buildings exist with a significant quantity constructed before 1860. Many of these are protected in Council's District Plan (incorporated in the Nelson Resource Management Plan) and a considerable number are also registered with the NZ Historic Places Trust. They include Bishop Suter Art Gallery; Nelson School of Music; Bishop's School, Fairfield House, Melrose House, and Warwick House. Many are in active use today. See the Nelson Resource Management Plan (link to the right under related links, or visit the Heritage New Zealand website to search for further information.
Note: This link will take you to the Heritage New Zealand "Search the List" page. To check for buildings in Nelson, click in the search box, and the select Nelson from the drop-down list.

heritage link

Heritage precincts

To date seven residential heritage precincts have been identified: Alton Street, the Dear Cottages, Elliott Street, Fountain Place, Russell Street, Seymour Avenue, and South Street. Read the design guides for these precincts.

Heritage cemeteries and historic records

Four cemeteries- Marsden, Hira, Whakapuaka and Seaview are maintained by the Council. They are a great source of information about the past.

In addition Nelson has a number of small historic graveyards, including Hallowell Cemetery which now shows little evidence of its original use. Our cemeteries database allows you to easily locate friends and family buried in Nelson. Online cemetery maps are also being developed.

The Nelson Branch of the Genealogical Society has excellent records particularly of Whakapuaka Cemetary.  The history has been captured in a book by Rosemary Venner available from the Nelson Library. You can search the Nelson City Council Early Settlers Database to find information about your ancestors who made the long voyage from Europe to settle in the Nelson Region. This information is based on original NZ Company Passengers To Nelson manifests and shipping lists published in The Colonist newspaper 1841-1850, supplied by the Nelson Provincial Museum.

Learn more about Nelson's cemeteries.