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Founders Heritage Park, Nelson

January 18, 2021

If you’re heading to Nelson over school holidays, anytime of year is a good time to take time out to visit Founders Heritage Park.

A Nelson City Council venue the park contains a replica historic village, a fine example of Nelson’s history. The character buildings are surrounded by beautiful gardens.

Ride on the train offering a taste of the original Nelson to Glenhope line which was in operation until 1955 and which is operational usually every day in the school holidays.

Visit the exhibitions and displays including the bike display with a good range of bikes, many old and rare including the 1869 bone shaker, the 1875 Penny Farthing, the 1908 pace bike with its unique "granny gear" and the 1902 Pederson Dulux. 

Jump into the cockpit of the Bristol Freighter aeroplane and explore the body, a great opportunity for the kid’s imaginations to take them back to a former era.

For those lovers of fire engines take the kids to visit the replica of the Nelson Volunteer Fire Brigade Engine House build in 1867 and where you’ll find Dennis, the 1954 fire engine and also Little Flick, the Land Rover Fire Tender.

For the boat lovers you can explore the Port Museum Buildings where you can find out more about Nelson’s rich nautical history.

For the big bus and coach lovers the Newman’s Coach Display will give you the history of Newman’s Coaches who opened up transport routes across the top of the South Island and who were instrumental in the development of New Zealand’s tourism industry. The kids will love the vintage coaches, interactive exhibits and there’s even some early film footage.

For other machine lovers head to the Harvestland Display with machines for all types of activities showcasing Nelson’s agricultural heritage.

Mum and Dad might enjoy popping into the Hop & Beer Museum and all the family will enjoy a break relaxing in the Founders Café which also has a playground next door. Or perhaps bring along a picnic.

All in all there’s something for everyone at Founders Heritage Park.

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