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The Tasman Region borders the West Coast, Marlborough and Nelson regions. It is both a region and a unitary authority, and the District Council sits at Richmond, with Community Boards serving outlying communities in Motueka and Golden Bay. Tasman Bay, the largest indentation in the north coast of the South Island, was named after Abel Tasman, the first reported European discoverer of New Zealand. It passed the name on to the adjoining district formed in 1989, largely from the merger of Waimea and Golden Bay counties. Tasman District is a large area at the top western side of the South Island. It covers 9,786 square kilometres and is bounded to the west by the Matiri Ranges, the Tasman Mountains and the Tasman Sea. To the north,Tasman and Golden bays form its seaward edge and the eastern boundary extends to the edge of Nelson city and includes part of the Spencer Mountains and the Saint Arnaud and Richmond ranges.
The Victoria Ranges form Tasman's southern boundary and the district's highest point is Mt Owen, at 1,875 metres. The landscape is diverse. From large mountainous areas to valleys and plains, sliced by such major rivers as the Bullerr, Motueka, Aorere, Takaka and Wairoa rivers. There's lush bush and bird life, golden beaches, the unique 40-kilometre sands of Farewell Spit, and boundless fishing in the bays and rivers. These assets make the district wonderfully diverse to tourists.