Milford Sound

Travel Guide
Milford Sound

At the heart of the Fiordland National Park is one of New Zealand’s most iconic natural wonders, a testament to the power of nature.

Stretching 15 kilometres (9.3 miles) inland from the rugged southwest coast of New Zealand’s South Island is Milford Sound, a fiord formed by millennia of glacial erosion. Surrounded by soaring mountain peaks and dense rainforest, Milford Sound is considered one of the country’s star attractions, despite its remote location. Visit the sound to see cascading waterfalls and wealth of wildlife.

As the crow flies, Milford Sound seems quite close to the major tourist hub of Queenstown and its international airport; however, the mountain terrain that dominates the southwest of New Zealand means that the journey will take approximately 4 hours by car from both Queenstown and Invercargill. Soar high above the mountain peaks to see Milford Sound by helicopter or light plane for unparalleled views.

See the fiord up-close by venturing onto its placid surface aboard a chartered cruise. Boat trips can be as short as 2 hours. Spot seals, penguins, dolphins and whales as you travel. Look for the fiord’s two permanent waterfalls, Lady Bowen Falls and Stirling Falls. As one of the wettest regions of the country, hundreds of temporary falls regularly develop here after heavy rain.

Look for the towering Mitre Peak high above the sound, a gruelling climb for experienced hikers. A number of more accessible trails follow the banks of Milford Sound through the national park. Pick up brochures from the Fiordland National Park Visitor Centre for a full list of walks.

Camping grounds are dotted throughout the Fiordland National Park; however, beyond this, there are few options for accommodation closer than Te Anau, some 118 kilometres (73 miles) to the south. Book accommodation in advance as few visitors to the region are willing to miss this majestic attraction.

Fiordland Discovery
Fiordland Discovery
4 out of 5
Berth 5, Milford Wharf, Milford Sound
This vessel pulls anchor and sets sail from Milford Sound for at least part of your stay.
4.7/5 Exceptional! (31 reviews)
"This was easily the highlight of a trip full of highlights. The staff was incredible, made us feel like royalty. The food was top notch, and the boat was breathtaking. Our original trip to Milford Sound had to be moved to Doubtful Sound due to a road outage. The owners went above and beyond to make ..."

Reviewed on 27 Mar. 2020

Get rates
Fiordland Discovery
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.
Colonial Motel Invercargill
Colonial Motel Invercargill
4 out of 5
143 Mary Street, Invercargill, Southland
The price is AU$120 per night from 22 Nov. to 22 Nov.
Located in Richmond, this aparthotel is within 1 mile (2 km) of Southland Museum and Art Gallery, Rugby Park Stadium and Splash Palace. Civic Theatre and Bill ...
4.3/5 Excellent! (218 reviews)
A pleasant Stay
"This motel was reasonably priced and very clean. The owners have made every effort to bring the motel up to standard and provide for the needs of guests. Comfortable beds."

Reviewed on 21 Jul. 2021

Colonial Motel Invercargill
Quest Invercargill Serviced Apartments
Quest Invercargill Serviced Apartments
4.5 out of 5
Cnr Dee & Tay Streets, 10 Dee Street, Invercargill
The price is AU$133 per night from 24 Oct. to 24 Oct.
Located in Invercargill City Centre, this luxury aparthotel is within a 5-minute walk of Classic Motorcycle Mecca and Civic Theatre. Bill Richardson Transport ...
4.4/5 Excellent! (468 reviews)
"The property is well positioned near to the centre of Invercargill. The rooms re comfortable and reasonably sized. Very friendly and helpful staff."

Reviewed on 23 Oct. 2021

Quest Invercargill Serviced Apartments
South City Accommodation Unit 3
South City Accommodation Unit 3
5 Tramway Road, Unit 3, Invercargill, Southland
The price is AU$165 per night from 24 Oct. to 24 Oct.
Located in Strathern, this holiday home is within 2 miles (3 km) of Southland Hospital, Rugby Park Stadium and Splash Palace. St. Mary's Basilica and Civic Theatre ...
4.8/5 Exceptional! (19 reviews)
Cosy and clean
"What a lovely, cosy, clean, well equiped unit, we all had a great nights sleep as beds were so comfy. Would definitely stay again!"

Reviewed on 25 Jul. 2021

South City Accommodation Unit 3
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.

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