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Motueka lies close to the mouth of the Motueka River, on the western shore of Tasman Bay. It is, after Nelson and Richmond, the third largest centre in the region, with a permanent population of around 6000.
surrounding district has a number of orchards, as well as growing a variety of
specialised crops such as hops, and formerly serving as the main centre of
tobacco growing in New Zealand.
Nearby beaches (such as
Kaiteriteri Beach and Marahau) are very popular with holidaymakers, and the area
around Motueka has one of the country's highest annual sunshine-hour indices.
Motueka, as one of the nearest
towns to the Abel Tasman and Kahurangi National Parks, which has become the base
of many tourism ventures in those parks and in other recreational areas.
Many artists live in the area around Motueka, especially potters and reggae musicians.
Motueka is served by daily
coach and bus services from Nelson and