We nearly missed our boat ride in Milford Sound. We knew how long it would take to get there, but we had left out two important things – the waiting time at the end of the Homer Tunnel, and worse, the parking situation at the harbour in Milford Sound.
There was a Park & Ride parking lot that combined parking with bus transport to the harbour, and we ended up using that. Unfortunately, a bus had just left when we parked, so we had to run more or less all the way to the harbour. Luckily, we made it.
Our boat experience was very much defined by the company we had chosen for the boat ride. Cruise Milford run the smallest cruise boats on the fiord, and it was an altogether great experience. The boat wasn’t too big, the staff were really friendly, there weren’t too many people, and the tour of the fiord was beautiful.
We had heard that Milford Sound was way more touristy than Doubtful Sound, and that may be true, but when I compare the two boat experiences we had, I felt much less like part of a cattle transport in this one.
The weather was great, but it had recently been raining a lot, so the waterfalls everywhere were stunning, and the conditions for seeing the fiord perfect.
Due to the size of the boat, the captain sailed really close to the waterfalls (actually he sailed under one of them – that was wet), and he also sailed under a cliff formation while he told us about the different layers and shapes.
Brilliant experience – warm recommendations for Cruise Milford.
We had lunch in Milford Sound, and then we walked back to the car, and headed South for Manapouri. Once again we stopped many times. The scenery going from Milford Sound to the Homer Tunnel is spectacular, and at the other side it keeps going.
Milford Sound has made a huge impression on all of us.