The first part of my 2 week South Island Road trip was spent in Collingwood exploring parts of New Zealand I haven’t been before. The Takaka Hill is a formidable barrier keeping outsiders on the Nelson side. Its a bit like the Bombay hills keeping the “Jaffas” north of the rest of NZ. Those on the other side are mostly there for a reason . I mean there’s never the excuse “I was just passing through and I liked it here” . Its not the sort of place that Jack Reacher would happen to be passing through, getting off the bus to save a damsel in distress. The region has a reputation for being an alternative lifestyle and getting back to the land. That’s a good reason to live there. Beautiful beaches , fertile land for marijuana and hops. No vaccinations, no mercury in your fillings , warmer weather, clean air , it is like Paradise. If you want to be a hippie this is another choice instead of Raglan. But if you wanna surf, stick to Raglan. This place is for kayaks.