Cable Bay is a sheltered bay about 20km north-east of Nelson. It has a pebble beach which is also the causeway to Pepin Island. The ocean at Cable Bay is suitable for swimming but it can be a bit tricky to get in and out of the water at high tide if the sea has some swell - we prefer low to mid tide here when more of its sandy patches are exposed. Cable Bay is also a great spot for snorkeling with the adjacent Horoirangi marine reserve and its reef between Cable Bay and Glenduan (where the Boulder Bank begins).
If you have a Kayak we suggest to explore the coastline around Pepin Island and discover the caves and secluded bays which are also a great base for snorkeling activities. On your way you will meet some local birdlife and if you're lucky you might even spot some seals or dolphins.
At the beginning of the beach is also the start or end point for the Cable Bay Walkway which has fantastic coastal views over the Tasman Bay.
The bay was named Cable Bay because New Zealand's first overseas telegraph cable link to Australia started here. It got into service at the end of the 19th century and had been in use for 38 years. These days a fibre-optic cable leaves Cable Bay to connect with the North Island.
Leave Nelson on State Highway 6 towards Blenheim and continue for about 14km. Just before Hira you will see the little St Johns church on the left and the turn off to Cable Bay. Follow the Cable Bay Road until you reach the beach.