Collingwood is perfectly located for a multi-day stay around the northwest end of Golden Bay. The town itself is located on the coast next to the Aorere River mouth, with a campground right beside the township.

Like many of the more remote small New Zealand towns, it has not changed much physically for a 100 years. But it has done a nice job of describing the local history and has a handful of interesting and colourful local cafes and businesses. It is also only a 10 minute drive from the Mussel Inn, back down the main road towards Takaka. This is a must visit for its in-house beers, food and live music.

Follow the sign to the colonial era cemetery, which appears as if it could disappear back into the bush. There is also a sign there that describes a grand plan for the expansion of Collingwood that never came to pass.

While we were there, the weather was mostly atrocious with local flooding next to the beach. But the shot of the Mussel Inn courtyard under a foot or so of water made for a nice night reflection.

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