23 Apr Our Milford Sound Cruise
Milford Sound has been dubbed the eighth Wonder of the World and is one of the most visited attractions in New Zealand, so we couldn’t miss out on taking a boat trip to this talked-about fjord. By the time we arrived in Queenstown we were exhausted from our whirlwind month of travel in New Zealand; in the space of a week we’d been skydiving, glacier hiking and spent hours behind the wheel, so a chilled-out boat trip on Milford Sound and some amazing scenery was just what we needed.
Cruising Milford Sound New Zealand
Although we had a rental car and could have driven out there ourselves, given that it’s an eight hour round trip from Queenstown we decided to pay for one of the Milford Sound Tours, which include coach travel and a couple of hours sailing around the fjord. We’re glad that we did so we could both relax and enjoy the views on the way there and nap on the way back. Our driver also knew the best places to make photo stops and provided some interesting commentary along the way.
Milford Sound is the second wettest place in the world – It rains about 94 percent of the time, so most people get soaked on Milford Sound boat trips. Unbelievably, although it rained while we were on the coach, it stayed dry for the whole of our two hour cruise, allowing us to stand out on the upper deck and watch the spectacular scenery.
At first the water was calm as we moved slowly through the fjord, a tiny toy-boat bobbing along on the surface of a sea surrounded by mammoth mountains and crashing waterfalls. As we broke through into the open ocean the waves became so choppy that we were sent flying into the air as the boat smashed up and down and we gripped the rails, shrieking in delight with each bump – it was such great fun.
One of the other highlights of our cruise was getting up close to the wild seals who were lazing about on the rocks and playing in the water. They were unconcerned by the tourist boats, safe in the knowledge that they’re protected and have an abundant supply of food since fishing is prohibited in Milford.
Our Milford Sound Cruise – in Pictures
No trip to New Zealand’s South Island would be complete without a visit to Milford Sound; although the sky was a bit grey and there was a definite chill in the air we loved it. Next time we visit New Zealand (yes, we’re already dreaming of going back!) we’d like to spend a few days hiking the Milford Track; we’ve also heard that Doubtful Sound is stunning and deserves a visit.
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*Our Milford Sound Tour (including coach and two-hour boat cruise) cost £76 per person.