Destinations Magazine

A Last Kayak Adventure on Milford Sound

By Leonoras


Arriving at Milford Sound, we spent a good couple hours debating how exactly to take in what is often described as New Zealand’s quintessential experience.

A stunning landscape dominated by towering sheer cliffs, dark waters, jagged white capped mountains, far too many waterfalls to count, dense forests complete with the occasional ‘tree avalanche’, and a legendary ever pervading mist, Milford is a must-do on nearly ever NZ itinerary and the number of activities on offer are testament to the area’s enormous reputation.


Countless cruises, wilderness boat rides, overnight wildlife experiences, multi-day treks, boating and trekking combos. It goes on and on. We ultimately decided on a daylong kayak trip through the fiord, and while at first it seemed like perhaps not the best choice when we found nearly 50 other eager paddlers also anxiously awaiting pick-up at 9a the next morning, for us it unquestionably ended up being the right way to experience the sound.  


We were quickly split up into small groups each with our own guide, and taken on a slow tour through Milford’s many sights, up and around enormous waterfalls, through tiny jungle-like inlets, and past several groups of bottlenose dolphins that flipped and twirled under and directly in front of the boat.


With countless sea planes flying above, cruise boats puffing their way past and about a jillion other kayakers floating about, it certainly wasn’t the blissful solitude of kayaking up north in Abel Tasman, but just being on Milford Sound with all it’s vastness, color and wildlife rendered the busyness of it all truly unimportant.

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