A Travel Price Comparison for New Zealand Nelson vs. Arrowtown for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Nelson or Arrowtown?

Trying to figure out where to travel next? This travel cost comparison between Nelson and Arrowtown can help. For many travelers, the cost of a destination is a primary consideration when choosing where to go.

Nelson

Nelson is a city that sits on Tasman Bay on the South Island of New Zealand. Travelers, especially ones that are heading to explore Abel Tasman National Park, frequently visit this town. Nelson has a population of about 46,000 people and, geographically speaking, it is the center of New Zealand as a whole.

Arrowtown

Historically, Arrowtown is an old gold mining town that is located on the South Island of New Zealand. The town was established during the Otago gold rush of 1862. It is very close to Queenstown, which is a very popular destination among travelers, and it is definitely worth visiting if you are in the Otago region of New Zealand. It is a very tiny town, with a population of just over 2,000 people. The town has a lot of character and history and is a perfect place to go if you wish to get out of the touristy areas like Queenstown.

Which city is cheaper, Arrowtown or Nelson?

These are the overall average travel costs for the two destinations.

The average daily cost (per person) in Nelson is $89, while the average daily cost in Arrowtown is $108. These costs include accommodation (assuming double occupancy, so the traveler is sharing the room), food, transportation, and entertainment. While every person is different, these costs are an average of past travelers in each city. Below is a breakdown of travel costs for Nelson and Arrowtown in more detail.



Accommodation

The average price for accommodation for two people in Nelson is $76. This is for two people sharing a typical double occupancy hotel room.

Double occupancy rooms typically run around $126 in Arrowtown For nicer amenities and a premiere location, you can expect to pay a bit more.


  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Nelson $38
    Arrowtown $63
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Nelson $76
    Arrowtown $126

Food

The price of a meal in Nelson can vary widely. However, the average price for food per day is $26 per person, and a typical meal will cost around $10 based on the spending of previous visitors. Less expensive dining options can be found by eating street food or at fast food restaurants.

Food in Arrowtown costs travelers about $28 per day on average. Restaurants can vary significantly in price, so choose wisely if you're trying to save money. Fast food and street stalls are typically your cheapest options, which sit down restaurants can be significantly more expensive.


  • Food Meals for one day
    Nelson $26
    Arrowtown $28

Local Transportation

The cost of a taxi ride in Nelson is significantly more than public transportation. On average, past travelers have spent $27 per person, per day, on local transportation in Nelson.

To get around in Arrowtown, the average visitor spends $26 per day, per person. This includes the costs of taxi rides and private drivers as well as public transportation, which tends to be much more affordable.


  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Nelson $27
    Arrowtown $26

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Nelson

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Nelson:

  • Departure Transfer: Nelson City Centre Hotels to Nelson Airport: $43
  • Arrival Transfer: Nelson Airport to Nelson City Centre Hotels: $43

Is it cheaper to fly into Nelson or Arrowtown?

Prices for flights to both Arrowtown and Nelson change regularly based on dates and travel demand. We suggest you find the best prices for your next trip on Kayak, because you can compare the cost of flights across multiple airlines for your prefered dates.





Entertainment

Entertainment and activities in Nelson typically cost an average of $22 per person, per day. This includes fees paid for admission tickets to museums and attractions, day tours, and other sightseeing expenses.

In Arrowtown, the costs for things to do, activities, admission tickets, and other sightseeing expenses are on average $14 per person, per day.


  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Nelson $22
    Arrowtown $14

Tours and Activities in Nelson

Some specific costs of activities, tours, and entrance tickets for Nelson are as follows:

  • Abel Tasman National Park: Day Trip with 1.5-Hour Cruise: $150
  • Abel Tasman and Golden Bay Tour: $149
  • Dragon Hunt Archery Experience in Pristine Native Forest: $115
  • Fly Golden Bay & Cruise Abel Tasman Day Tour from Nelson: $341
  • Full-Day Abel Tasman National Park Hiking Tour with Cruise: $354
  • Nelson City Walking Tour - Guided: $36
  • Skywire Experience: $76
  • SKYWIRE Experience: $78
  • Self-Guided Nelson to Mapua Cycle Adventure: $75
  • Tunnel to Town - Day Adventure - Option A Via Mapua: $125
  • Tunnel to Town - Day Adventure Option B Nelson City: $100

Tours and Activities in Arrowtown

For Arrowtown, here are a few prices for actual activities, tours, and tickets provided by various companies:

  • Queenstown: Self-Guided Biking Experience from Arrowtown: $31

Alcohol

The average person spends about $12 on alcoholic beverages in Nelson per day. The more you spend on alcohol, the more fun you might be having despite your higher budget.

Typically, people visiting Arrowtown spend on average $12 on alcoholic beverages per person, per day.


  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Nelson $12
    Arrowtown $12

Sample the Local Flavors in Nelson

Some specific costs for nightlife related activities in Nelson:

  • Half Day Wine Tour: $114


When we compare the travel costs of actual travelers between Nelson and Arrowtown, we can see that Arrowtown is more expensive. And not only is Nelson much less expensive, but it is actually a significantly cheaper destination. So, traveling to Nelson would let you spend less money overall. Or, you could decide to spend more money in Nelson and be able to afford a more luxurious travel style by staying in nicer hotels, eating at more expensive restaurants, taking tours, and experiencing more activities. The same level of travel in Arrowtown would naturally cost you much more money, so you would probably want to keep your budget a little tighter in Arrowtown than you might in Nelson.

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Nelson vs. Arrowtown Travel Comparison

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