HMNZS OTAGO to visit Nelson Port as Part of Navy's 75th Anniversary

16 February 2016

The Royal New Zealand Navy’s (RNZN) HMNZS OTAGO will visit Nelson for the first time from 20-24 February, as part of the RNZN’s 75th anniversary celebrations.

HMNZS OTAGO will arrive in Nelson on Saturday 20 February and will host a public open day from 1pm-5pm. This is a great chance for people to find out more about the Navy of today and the service our men and women give for New Zealand.

This is also a rare opportunity to get up and close with one of the Navy’s two offshore patrol vessels.

On Saturday 21 February at 11:30am there will be a service at the HMS Neptune Memorial on Wakefield Quay to commemorate the loved ones four Nelson families lost.

The HMS NEPTUNE sank after hitting an enemy minefield in the Mediterranean on 19 December, 1941 with the loss of all but one man, including all 150 New Zealanders on-board.

The name Operation NEPTUNE was chosen to highlight the greatest single loss sustained by our Navy.

Following the service, the Neptune Cup Yacht Race will be held from 2pm. Crew members from the HMNZS OTAGO will participate in the race which is organised by the Tasman Bay Cruising Club and Nelson Yacht Club.

HMNZS OTAGO is coming to Nelson on the way home after being in the sub-Antarctic Auckland Islands with Young Blake Expedition participants. 



What to bring:

  • For safety, please wear closed toe footwear when visiting the ship
  • Please also bring drinking water - as the ship will only be able to supply emergency water
  • Sunscreen - there is little shade on-board


  • Lay Up Wharf No. 1, Vickerman Street, Port Nelson
  • Follow Vickerman St down to end and at the cul-de-sac follow the road through and around to the right, which will take you to the Lay Up Wharf area. There is plenty of car parking.

NEPTUNE Cup Yacht Race:

  • Organised by the Tasman Bay Cruising Club, so anyone interested in participating should contact Missy Hearfiled (
  • Yachts in the race will be leaving from the marina adjacent the Tasman Bay Cruising Club on Akersten Street, Port Nelson.
  • The pre-race briefing is at 12.45pm and the race is scheduled to commence at 2pm

For more information:

Visit the Operation NEPTUNE 75th anniversary webpage and follow the RNZN Facebook page for regular updates on how, when and where people can get involved.


This page was last reviewed on 18 February 2016.