Many thanks to http://www.tasman.govt.nz/
The northern part of the bay is largely devoid of population; the southern part contains the populous but small plains around the mouth of the Takaka River. Between the two lies the small town of Collingwood.
Dutch explorer Abel Tasman anchored in this bay in 1642. However, resulting the hostile encounter with the local Maori when a party from his ships tried to land caused him to bestow upon it the name Murderers Bay. English explorer James Cook renamed it Golden Bay during his voyage of discovery in 1769.
The Golden Bay district, at the northwest corner of the South Island, New Zealand, and about 70 kilometres northwest of Nelson, is a coastal area bordered by the ranges of Kahurangi National Park and Abel Tasman National Park. It is largely separated from the rest of the island by steep hill country—the only road into the area traverses a steep,winding pass between the Riwaka and Takaka River valleys.
The population of approximately 4500 triples over summer with an influx of visitors, who enjoy its natural beauty, recreational opportunities and festival culture. Golden Bay's popularity also stems in part for its remoteness and its internationally significant conservation areas, such as Farewell Spit and Pupu Springs. It is also noted for its extensive cave systems.