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Adelaide Itineraries South Australia
Experience Oz + NZ Presents

Milford Sound

itineraries

by Experience Oz staff

New Zealand's Milford Sound ranks among the most highly-praised areas in the entire country. The region has gained worldwide fame for its unparalleled natural beauty with a variety of natural environmental and geological spectacles that sum up the essence of what New Zealand is all about.

Situated in Fiordland in New Zealand's south island, Milford Sound's renowned diversity of landscapes features cascading waterfalls flowing from sheer rock walls, lush green rainforests adorning snow-capped mountains, and spectacularly clear glass-like waters. All of this combines to make it a destination with a seemingly endless amount of things to see.

The abundance of things to see can sometimes be overwhelming for visitors, so we've put together some suggested Milford Sound things to do for up to three days in the region. We believe these recommendations will help you get the most out of your trip to this visually enchanting part of NZ.


Day 1

Take an Overnight Cruise

Departing from the town of Te Anau, you'll have the option of boarding one of two vessels. You can choose from the Milford Wanderer, a slightly more budget-conscious choice, offering twin-share cabins and shared bathroom facilities, or the more upmarket counterpart the Milford Mariner with its private cabins and ensuites.

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Each of the vessels will take you down the full stunning length of Milford Sound's channel before anchoring for the night in a location that epitomises the word tranquility.

Once anchored, you'll have the choice of exploring the area with a guide, relaxing on the deck, dining on board or simply admiring the surrounding flora and fauna. Both cruises also include a delicious multi-course meal to cap off the proceedings.

Day 2

Explore the Te Anau Glow Worm Caves

Another must-see that receives a lot of praise in the Fiordland region, the Glow Worm Caves of Te Anau have become a regional icon, and with good cause; their level of illumination is extremely impressive, with the quantity of glow worms in the colony being one of the highest in the southern hemisphere.

Situated in the lower section of a much larger cave system extending all the way to the nearby Fiordland National Park, this wonderful underground world of shimmering creatures that adorn the roofs and walls of the caves is often compared to looking up into a starry night sky.

The tour itself takes you on a cruise across Lake Te Anau's waters before dropping you and your fellow tour members on the shores with some time to view the displays at Cavern House before your friendly, experienced guide leads you into the caves where the true adventure begins.

Milford Sound Itineraries Overnight Cruise

Enjoy an intimate Kayaking Tour

Get closer to the elements by kayaking through the fiord, accompanied by an experienced guide during this once-in-a-lifetime Sea Kayaking tour.

Leaving from Milford Sound (6 Hours) or Te Anau (12 hours), the tour includes paddling through crystal clear waters while gazing up at some of the region's most awe-inspiring landmarks, such as the Mitre Peak, Pembroke Glacier and various thundering waterfalls, along with a wide variety of potential wildlife encounters including seals, penguins and dolphins.

With up to 5 hours of kayaking through Milford Sound's unforgettable fiords and, weather permitting, a rare stop for lunch on one of the regions secluded beaches, you will be exposed to one of the most intimate perspectives of this truly spectacular and dynamic environment, largely untouched by human life.

Tours are capped at eight people per guide and require competence in the water, a moderate level of fitness and a minimum age of 16.

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Day 3

Get the birds eye view with a scenic flight

After seeing Milford Sound from boat and kayak, the third perspective, and arguably most impressive, is from above.

Providing hotel pickup, flights depart at 10 am daily and include spectacular views from Queenstown all the way down to the Tasman Sea. With a full hour in the skies, the experience provides one of the best ways to ensure you’ll tick off each of the regions most notable sites from above.

Including remarkable views of the Bowen, Stirling and Sutherland waterfalls, and stunning mountains and lakes sprawled throughout the South Islands Fiordland National Park; you’ll be able to avoid missing out on seeing this incredible part of New Zealand despite limited time to spend in the region.

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Explore the region on foot

After returning from your scenic flight, you’ll have plenty of time to explore the region and revisit some of the areas you were able to scout out from above.

Milford Sound is home to some of the most awe-inspiring nature walks New Zealand has to offer, including paid tours and free walks that vary from 30 minutes to several days in length.

The Gertrude Valley Walk is free to the public and takes hikers seven kilometres one way through the region's beautiful landscape, including spectacular views over striking mountainous terrain.

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Suggested Post: Top 10 Things to do in Queenstown

In addition, if you're looking for things to do in the Milford Sound region, visit the online catalogue and browse and book all available tours, activities and attractions.

Browse Milford Sound Experiences