Milford Sound Cruises

4.5(310 Ratings)
Panoramic Views
Panoramic Views
Frequent Departures
Frequent Departures
Sightseeing & Onboard Meal Options
Sightseeing & Onboard Meal Options



Select Your Experience

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4.5(203)

2-Hour Milford Sound Cruise

from
NZ$125
Free Cancellation

You can cancel these tickets up to 24 hours before the experience begins and get a full refund.

Instant Confirmation
Mobile Ticket
2 hr.
Highlights
Inclusions
Need to know
Cancellation Policy
  • Explore Milford Sound on this sightseeing cruise, which takes you near its majestic cliffs and glacier-carved waterfalls unlike any other.
  • Join the skipper in the open wheelhouse and enjoy coffee and tea onboard. Look out for sunbathing seals, dolphins, or rare seasonal Fiordland Crested Penguins.
  • Sail by Stirling Falls, cascading from a staggering 508 feet, feeling the cool glacial mist. Savor a hot cup of tea or coffee onboard.

Inclusions

  • 2-hour Milford Sound cruise
  • Stops at points of interest
  • Informative commentary from the skipper
  • Complimentary tea & coffee on-board

Exclusions

  • Transfers
  • Tip: Gas stations are absent on the Milford highway, so be sure to top off your tank in Te Anau.
  • Book online to save time and avoid offline hassles such as waiting on the dock for the next ship to arrive.
    Wear waterproof clothing or non-slip socks as there is a good possibility of getting wet as you go near waterfalls.
  • Wheelchairs and prams can be brought on board as long as they fold to fit through the entrance of the boat.
  • You can cancel these tickets up to 24 hours before the experience begins and get a full refund.
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4.5(50)

From Queenstown: Milford Cruise, Lunch & Return Transfers

from
NZ$245
Free Cancellation

You can cancel these tickets up to 24 hours before the experience begins and get a full refund.

Instant Confirmation
Mobile Ticket
4 hr. 30 min. - 12 hr.
Transfers Included
Highlights
Inclusions
Itinerary
Need to know
Cancellation Policy
  • Take a relaxing coach ride from Queenstown, traveling through the picturesque Eglinton Valley and Mirror Lakes.
  • Visit Fiordland National Park, recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, with a local guide. Walk along nature trails and stop for photo ops.
  • The highlight? A scenic cruise on the glass-roofed boat in Milford Sound. Spot penguins, and seals as you pass by waterfalls and cliffs.
  • Have lunch on the cruise, accompanied by tea or coffee. Admire the scenery from the spacious deck or the cabin.
  • Upgrade to opt for a round-trip flight between Milford Sound and Queenstown. Enjoy aerial views of the Southern Alps, Lake Wakatipu, and the popular Routeburn Track.

Inclusions

  • Milford Sound cruise
  • Hotel pick-up and drop-off
  • Local driver/guide
  • Complimentary tea & coffee on-board
  • Round-trip coach drive between Queenstown & Milford Sound (based on option selected)
  • 1-hr 20-min round-trip flight between Queenstown & Milford Sound (based on option selected)
  • Live commentary by pilot (based on option selected)
  • Lunch aboard the cruise (based on option selected)
  • Pick up from your Queenstown accommodation
  • Scenic drive by AC coach or flight to Milford Sound over Mt. Aspiring National Park
  • Short walks and photo ops around Eglinton Valley, Mirror Lakes, Knobs Flat
  • Milford Sound cruise
  • Return coach drive or flight to Queenstown over Fiordland National Park
  • Drop off at your Queenstown accommodation
  • Tip: Head to the bow when near Stirling Falls on the boat to experience a refreshing spray from glacial meltwater!
  • You can cancel these tickets up to 24 hours before the experience begins and get a full refund.
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4.5(47)

From Te Anau: Milford Cruise, Nature Walk, Lunch & Return Transfers

from
NZ$185
Free Cancellation

You can cancel these tickets up to 24 hours before the experience begins and get a full refund.

Instant Confirmation
Mobile Ticket
8 hr. - 9 hr.
Transfers Included
Highlights
Inclusions
Itinerary
Need to know
Cancellation Policy
  • Take a coach trip from Te Anau, stopping for short walks and photo ops at must-visit sights like Mirror Lakes and Eglinton Valley with a local guide.
  • A local experience guide will share stories and knowledge about the area as you travel through Fiordland’s famous National Park.
  • Join the Milford Sound cruise sailing towards the Tasman Sea. Look out for seals, dolphins, and penguins, and enjoy the untamed scenery.
  • Enjoy a picnic lunch amidst glacier-carved landscapes followed by tea and coffee.
  • Upgrade to include extended guided walks. Hike to Lake Mistletoe, Lake Gunn, Homer Tunnel, and the sandy foreshore for classic views of Mitre Peak.

Inclusions

  • Round-trip coach drive between Te Anau & Milford Sound
  • Milford Sound cruise
  • Local driver/guide
  • Picnic lunch
  • Complimentary tea & coffee on-board
  • Hotel pick-up & drop-off (based on option selected)
  • Guided nature walks (based on option selected)
  • Pick up from Te Anau
  • Scenic drive to Milford Sound by air-conditioned coach
  • Photo ops stop at Te Anau Downs, Eglinton Valley & more
  • Short walks or extended guided walks around Lake Mistletoe, Mirror Lakes, Lake Gunn & more
  • Milford Sound cruise
  • Drop-off at Te Anau
  • Tip: Bring comfortable walking shoes, a day pack containing warm clothing including a thermal hat and gloves, sunhat and sunglasses, a waterproof jacket, a filled reusable water bottle, and a camera.
  • If you are self-driving, we would recommend booking a guided tour with transfers as the route from Te Anau to Milford Sound can be tricky. You can sit back, relax, and enjoy the amazing views on the route with live commentary while our expert guides take care of everything else.
  • The stops along Milford Road including Mirror Lakes, Knobs Flat, and Monkey Creek, are accessible depending on the weather and road conditions.
  • The tour departs daily, year-round excluding Christmas Day, 25 December.
  • You can cancel these tickets up to 24 hours before the experience begins and get a full refund.
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NEW

From Queenstown: Scenic Flyover & Milford Sound Cruise

from
NZ$485
Free Cancellation

You can cancel these tickets up to 24 hours before the experience begins and get a full refund.

Instant Confirmation
Mobile Ticket
4 hr. 30 min. - 8 hr.
Transfers Included
Highlights
Inclusions
Itinerary
Need to know
Cancellation Policy
  • Soak in the expanse of the mighty Milford Sound on a scenic flight. Soar through the Earnslaw Burn Glacier, Mitre Peak, and Olivine Ice Plateau.
  • Enjoy the view from your guaranteed window seat. Plus, your pilot becomes your personal guide, pointing out hidden waterfalls and cliffs.
  • Craving a closer look? Opt for a scenic coach drive from Queenstown winding past the Mirror Lakes, where the mountains mirror themselves in the still water.
  • Choose to sail past the majestic Stirling Falls or explore the nature trails at Mirror Lakes and Monkey Creek with cruise and trek options.
  • The return flight to Queenstown has a different route, with new views of glacier-fed rivers, Sutherland Falls, and Lake Quill. Plus, travel hassle-free with hotel transfers.

Inclusions

  • Flight transfers between Queenstown & Milford Sound
  • Hotel pick-up and drop-off
  • Live commentary by pilot
  • Coach drive from Queenstown to Milford Sound (based on option selected)
  • 1-hr 45-min Milford Sound Cruise (based on option selected)
  • 2-hr extended Milford Sound Cruise (based on option selected)
  • Complimentary tea, coffee, & water on cruise
  • Hiking trails around Milford Sound (based on option selected)

Exclusions

  • Food & drinks from licensed bar (available for purchase aboard the cruise)

Flight with landing & nature walk (based on option selected)

  • Pick-up from Queenstown hotel
  • Scenic flight to Milford Sound over Lake Wakatipu, Earnslaw Burn Glacier, Fiordland National Park & more
  • Nature walks on Lookout Track & Foreshore Loop Track for the best views of Mitre Pea
  • Return flight to Queenstown over Lake Quill & Sutherland Falls
  • Drop off at Queenstown hotel

Flight with landing & cruise (based on option selected)

  • Pick-up from Queenstown hotel
  • Scenic flight to Milford Sound over Lake Wakatipu, Earnslaw Burn Glacier, Fiordland National Park & more
  • Milford Sound cruise
  • Return flight to Queenstown over Lake Quill & Sutherland Falls
  • Drop off at Queenstown hotel

Coach drive, cruise & flight (based on option selected)

  • Pick-up from Queenstown hotel
  • Scenic coach drive to Milford Sound
  • Short walks along Mirror Lakes, Monkey Creek, Knobs Flat, the Homer Tunnel & more
  • Milford Sound cruise
  • Return flight to Queenstown over Lake Quill & Sutherland Falls
  • Drop off at Queenstown hotel
  • Tip: Look out for playful dolphins and, if you’re lucky, catch a glimpse of the rare and elusive Fiordland Crested Penguin.
  • Your scenic flyover from Queenstown over Milford Sound and back to Queenstown is approximately 1 hour 20 minutes.
  • Bring along any essential medication, sunglasses, camera, warm clothing layers, comfortable footwear, and water bottle.
  • Passengers weighing 140kg (308lb) or more should inform in advance. For helicopter activities, there is a weight limit of 116kg (255lb).
  • A discrepancy exceeding 15kg (33lb) from the declared weight at check-in may lead to rescheduling, depending on availability.
  • This activity is not suitable for wheelchair users or people with reduced mobility.
  • You can cancel these tickets up to 24 hours before the experience begins and get a full refund.
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NEW

Milford Sound Scenic Flyover Tour from Queenstown

from
NZ$440
Free Cancellation

You can cancel these tickets up to 24 hours before the experience begins and get a full refund.

Instant Confirmation
Mobile Ticket
1 hr. 19 min.
Transfers Included
Highlights
Inclusions
Need to Know
Cancellation Policy
  • Experience a unique perspective of Milford Sound with the Milford Sound Scenic Flyover, offering breathtaking aerial views.
  • Delight in the opportunity to enjoy a window seat during the flight, thanks to the seat layout that ensures everyone can enjoy the remarkable scenery.
  • Enjoy hotel pick-up and drop-off from your Queenstown accommodation and take a flight over the majestic Southern Alps towards Milford Sound.
  • Marvel at the panoramic vistas of Lake Wakatipu and glacier-fed braided rivers as you soar into the stunning Mt. Aspiring National Park.
  • Traverse the awe-inspiring landscapes of Fiordland National Park, witnessing the rugged beauty of the West Coast and the vastness of the Tasman Sea.
  • Experience all this magic with a small cozy tour group of just seven passengers.

Inclusions

  • Professional English-speaking pilot
  • Hotel pick-up & drop-off Queenstown
  • Child/booster seats and baby earmuffs are available on request
  • 11 seater van for transfers
  • Guaranteed window seat
  • From check-in 30 minutes before departure, to landing back at Queenstown Airport, is approximately 2 hours. Please note, this does not include time for self-driving or using our complimentary transfers.
  • Bring along any essential medication, sunglasses, camera, warm clothing layers, comfortable footwear, and water bottle.
  • Even though the aircraft is heated, it is recommended to bring light warm clothing layers.
  • Your scenic flyover from Queenstown over Milford Sound and back to Queenstown is approximately 1 hour 20 minutes.
  • All seats on the aircraft are window seats. Passenger seat allocation however is at the Pilots’ discretion due to the weight and balance of the plane.
  • Your experience may be subject to change due to weather conditions.
  • The cruising altitude is weather-dependent and ranges between 5,000-10,000 feet.
  • New Junior earmuffs for our young passengers. They have an impressive noise reduction rating of 22db and are approved to Global Safety Standards.
  • For operational and safety reasons, we request passenger weights during booking to ensure compliance with aircraft weight limits and balance requirements. Please notify if any passenger is 140kg (308lb) or over. Helicopter activities have a weight limit of 116kg (255lb) and require prior notification. Exceeding your declared weight by 15kg (33lb) at check-in may result in rescheduling, subject to availability.
  • This activity is not suitable for wheelchair users or people with reduced mobility.
  • You can cancel these tickets up to 24 hours before the experience begins and get a full refund.
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5.0(1)

Milford Sound Cruise with Underwater Observatory Access

from
NZ$165
Mobile Ticket
3 hr.
Highlights
Inclusions
Need to know
Cancellation Policy
  • Plunge into a natural adventure with New Zealand's only floating underwater observatory and a 2-hour Milford Sound cruise with lively commentary.
  • Descend 10m to observe underwater life at the observatory. Gaze at black coral, fish, and other wildlife while enclosed in an AC viewing room.
  • Witness the sheer grandeur of the fiord's landscapes, from the thundering waterfalls to the tranquility of the rainforests and towering peaks.
  • Enjoy the thrill of spotting wildlife, from seals basking in the sun to dolphins frolicking in the water, or even rare Fiordland Crested Penguins.
  • Have a close encounter with nature and the best viewing experience aboard a small boat as you drink glacial water and touch natural artifacts.

Inclusions

  • 2 to 3 hour Milford Sound cruise
  • Live commentary
  • Entry to Underwater Observatory
  • Tea & coffee
  • Tip: Look out for Mitre Peak, one of the most photographed features in Milford Sound due to its distinctive shape.
  • This experience is wheelchair and pram/stroller accessible.
  • Ramp is available on the boat for easy access.
  • Milford Sound is a natural environment so wildlife sightings cannot be guaranteed.
  • The operator reserves the right to amend timetables, cancel cruise departures, and substitute vessels at any time for safety or operational reasons including due to unsafe weather conditions or vessel maintenance.
  • These tickets can't be cancelled or rescheduled.
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NEW

Milford Cruise, Underwater Observatory Tickets, Kayaking & Lunch

from
NZ$295
Mobile Ticket
6 hr.
Meals Included
Highlights
Inclusions
Need to know
Cancellation Policy
  • Create unforgettable memories on a guided Milford Sound cruise and kayaking adventure in Harrison Cove to see its diverse marine life.
  • Descend into the only floating observatory in New Zealand and witness rare black coral and colorful fish, all thanks to a unique natural phenomenon.
  • Get guided kayaking instruction, perfect for beginners. Immerse yourself in the crystal-clear waters and soak in the breathtaking views.
  • Enjoy a delicious picnic lunch prepared onboard as you cruise the majestic fiord with complimentary tea or coffee.

Inclusions

  • 2-hour cruise of Milford Sound
  • Nature guide
  • 1 to 1.5 hour kayaking experience
  • Specialist kayak guide
  • Kayaking equipment
  • Entry to Milford Sound Underwater Observatory
  • Picnic lunch
  • Complimentary tea and coffee
  • Tip: Treat yourself to an overnight stay at a chalet in Milford Sound and enjoy its serene atmosphere after the crowds have left.
  • Children aged 14 and under must be accompanied by an adult in a double kayak for the kayaking experience.
  • Timetables, departures, and vessels are subject to change due to safety precautions, weather conditions, or maintenance requirements.
  • These tickets can't be cancelled or rescheduled.

Milford Sound Cruises | The Only Fiord in New Zealand Accessible by Road

A fiord in the southwest of New Zealand's South Island, Milford Sound is a UNESCO World Heritage Site known for its dramatic scenery like the Mitre Peak. With waterfalls that cascade over 3,000 ft and a unique marine ecosystem, this fjord’s inky black waters hold everything from dolphins and seals to black corals. The ultimate adventure unfolds on a cruise tour, allowing you to unlock the full splendor of this gem. 

Whether journeying from Te Anau or Queenstown, Milford Sound is heaven for you if you love all things nature and chasing your next adrenaline rush.  Discover your best cruise options, how to get there, and all you need for an unforgettable Milford Sound experience.

Why go on a Milford Sound cruise?

Aerial view of mountain Lake Quill and Sutherland Falls

Witness nature's majesty

From the distinctive Mitre Peak to the sprays of Stirling Falls cascading down over 1,500 feet and inky black waters that hold both fresh and seawater— nature’s artistry knows no bounds here.

A photo of a Fur Seal

Fauna that you’ll find nowhere else

Set your sights on rare species on your Milford Sound cruise tour like the New Zealand fur seals, a variety of dolphins, the endangered Fiordland Crested Penguin, the rare blue duck, alpine parrots, and if you’re lucky — a whale!

Visitors on the Milford Forest Walk

Milford magic on foot

Get the opportunity to go beyond the cruise and elevate your adventure with a guided small-group walking tour on the legendary Milford Track.

A guide showing around Milford Sound

Rich history & local lore

Don’t just navigate waters but learn all about Milford Sound’s journey and role in the Maori culture as well as European settlers from your cruise’s expert skipper.

A group of guests at Milford sound

Exclusive views, limited crowd

Experience Milford Sound's beauty intimately with carefully curated tours that prioritize personal encounters over crowded decks.

Things to know before booking a Milford Sound cruise

  • If you’re staying in Queenstown or Te Anau: Opt for a Milford Sound day tour with transfers. You can choose between coach or flight transfers. You can also enjoy guided cruises and tours. 
  • If you’re staying at Milford Sound: Go directly for a 2-hour guided cruise or combos that also offer guided nature walks/treks on Milford Track.
  • Want to enjoy Milford Sound from the sky?: Take a scenic flight tour from Queenstown with guaranteed window seats. You can also hop on a cruise after. 
  • If you’re looking to explore Milford Track: If you want to experience a slice of the track, join a small-group guided tour and explore the legendary Milford Track up the Giant Gate Waterfalls. If you’re short on time consider a guided nature walk of the top spots.
  • Routes to Milford Sound are tricky: Due to challenging, unpredictable weather and winding roads, self-driving to Milford Sound from Queenstown/Te Anau can be risky. Choosing a day tour with luxury coach transfers allows you to focus on enjoying scenic views and stops, instead of having your eyes continuously trained on the road. Plus, you’re in the hands of expert drivers familiar with the terrain.
  • Accessibility assured: Cruises and flight tours are accessibility-friendly.

Your Milford Sound cruise options

Ready for a Milford Sound adventure crafted just for you? Whether you're at Milford Sound itself, starting in scenic Te Anau, or launching from the vibrant Queenstown, we've curated the ultimate cruise experiences designed to perfectly complement your starting point.

Milford Sound Cruises

From Te Anau

From Te Anau: Milford Track, Cruise & Return Transfers

  • Get easy end-to-end transfers to and from Te Anau. Enjoy a unique combined experience in a small group — an expert guided trek on the Milford Track with a scenic cruise featuring live commentary.
  • Duration: 12 hours

From Te Anau: Milford Cruise, Nature Walk & Return Transfers

  • Enjoy stunning views from a glass-roof coach on a Te Anau to Milford Sound journey with guided nature walks, a luxury catamaran cruise, and the option to upgrade for a delectable onboard lunch.
  • Duration: 7-8 hours
Milford Sound Cruises

From Queenstown

From Queenstown: Milford Cruise, Lunch & Return Transfers

  • These tickets get you the ultimate hassle-free Milford Sound adventure with a guided coach tour that starts with a hotel pickup, followed by a scenic cruise with lunch, and an optional flight return.
  • Duration: 12 hours

From Queenstown: Scenic Flyover & Milford Sound Cruise

  • Gain a unique perspective on this round-trip flight experience from Queenstown to Milford Sound, accompanied by an English-speaking guide, and relax on a cruise with reserved seating and complimentary snacks.
  • Duration: 4 hours 30 minutes
Milford Sound Cruises

At Milford Sound

2-Hour Cruise of Milford Sound

  • Relax on this 2-hour journey and look at Milford Sound’s best stops along the way. Learn from live commentary by the expert Skipper, and warm yourself with complimentary tea and coffee on-board
  • Duration: 2 hours

Milford Track to Giant Gate Falls Small-Group Guided Tour

  • Join a small, intimate group for a personalized 11km walking tour led by an expert English-speaking guide. Explore the Milford Track and Giant Gate Waterfalls, with an optional cruise for added adventure.
  • Duration: 5-7 hours

Fjords, waterfalls, dolphins – what to expect on your Milford Sound cruise?

As one of the wettest and lushest places in the world, Milford Sound allows you to dip your toes into plenty of activities. Some of the top things to experience during your Milford Sound visit include:

Milford Sound Cruises
Milford Sound Cruises
Milford Sound Cruises
Milford Sound Cruises

Milford Sound – 1, 2 & 3-day itineraries

If you're ready to kick-start planning an unforgettable journey to Milford Sound—a place where nature and adventure await at every turn, here are some itineraries that can help you make the most of your time:

Milford Sound Cruises

Day 1: Arrival & Milford Sound essentials

Morning:

  • Trek the Milford Sound Track with an expert guide.

Afternoon:

Evening:

  • Take a night walk at the Rainforest Camper Park.
  • Enjoy the crystal clear skies and stargaze amidst Fiordland National Park. You’ll want to stay up for this view.
Milford Sound Cruises

Day 2: More adventure awaits

Morning:

  • Go kayaking in the fjord’s black inky waters.
  • Get moving and hike through a nature trail in the rainforest with a local expert.

Afternoon:

  • Enjoy a hearty meal at Pio Pio, Milford’s only fine-dining restaurant.
  • For thrill-seekers: Get your blood pumping with a snorkeling, heli-hiking, or heli-fishing experience. 
  • For nature lovers: The lush Fiordland National Park awaits you. Walk foreshore and catch glimpses of rare flora and fauna.

Evening:

  • Experience the region under the moonlight with a scenic overnight cruise. 
Milford Sound Cruises

Day 3: Leisure exploration

Morning:

  • Take a stroll and complete missed spots, if any. Or revisit your favorite spot.

Afternoon:

Evening:

  • Depart from Milford Sound: If you’re heading back to Queenstown, consider a scenic flight for a bird’s eye view and to see hidden gems up close.
  • If you’re heading back to Te Anau, consider a detour to Doubtful Sound or Te Anau Glowworm Caves.

Top sights in Milford Sound

Despite its name, Milford Sound is actually a fiord. Given that it was formed by glaciers dating back to the Ice Age, it comes as no surprise that countless natural wonders have been formed here. If you're looking for some of the unmissable sights in this fjord, we've summed it up for you below.

Plan your visit to Milford Sound

Timings
Best time to visit
Getting there
Return transfers
Milford Track
Lodging
Food
Visitor tips
Guests at Milford Sound

Timings:

  • Guided cruises: 8:50 AM, 11:10 AM, 1:30 PM, and 3:55 PM (daily)
  • Guided walking tours: 8:30 AM and 8:45 AM
  • Day trips from Queenstown/Te Anau (with transfers): 7:30 AM onwards (Queenstown), November 1 to April 30: Daily 8 AM to 5 PM; May 1 to October 31: Daily 8:30 AM to 4:30 PM (Te Anau)
  • Milford Sound scenic flights: 9 AM

Duration:

  • Guided cruises: Approximately 2 hours
  • Guided walking tours: Approximately 6 hours
  • Day trips from Queenstown/Te Anau (with transfers): Approximately 7 hours (half-day) and 12 hours (full-day)
  • Milford Sound scenic flights: Approximately1 hour 20 minutes (without transfers) and 4 hours 30 minutes (with transfers)
Lady enjoying the view at Milford Sound

Average temperatures:

  • Spring (October to November): 7°C – 16°C
  • Summer (December to March): 10°C – 19°C
  • Autumn (April to Mid-May): 5°C – 12°C
  • Winter (Late May to September):  1°C – 9°C

Wettest months: December and January.

The best time to explore Milford Sound's top sights is during spring (October to November) and autumn (March to mid-May). With cooler temperatures ranging from 4°C to 18°C, these seasons offer an optimal experience.  Expect regular rainfall when traveling through this region. For a stunning view of snowy mountaintops, winter showcases a picturesque contrast but check for avalanche warnings as road closures may occur.  between winter and summer depends on your personal preferences. 

Milford Sound location

Milford Sound or Piopiotahi, is nested in the southwestern corner of New Zealand's South Island. It is located within Fiordland National Park. Find on Maps

From Te Anau
  • Day-trip transfers: Enjoy modern coaches, end-to-end transfers, and expert guides with your day-trip tickets.
  • Bus: One bus departs Te Anau for Milford Sound. It's an approximately 3-hour ride. 
  • Car: Milford Sound is a 1.5-hour drive from Te Anau. However, beware of challenging roads.
From Queenstown
  • Day-trip transfers: Get seamless hotel transfers in modern glass-roof coaches with your Milford Sound day tour. tickets.
  • Flight: Take a 90-minute scenic flight to Milford Sound with hotel pick-ups and drop-offs.
  • Car: Milford Sound is an approximately 3 hours 30 minutes drive from Queenstown.
Transfers at Milford Sound

With Milford Sound day trip tickets, enjoy a stress-free journey, with end-to-end transfers and the freedom to savor every scene along the way.

  • Hotel pick-ups & drop-offs: When booking your Milford Sound day trip online, opt for a pick-up and drop-off at your hotel in Queenstown or Te Anau. Talk about convenience, at your doorstep. 
  • Reserved round-trip hassle-free commute: Ensure a stress-free commute with reserved round-trip transfers that are also curated for the complete Milford Sound adventure.
  • Spacious & comfortable glass-roof coaches: Travel in comfort and style. Aboard spacious glass-roof coaches, that offer an unrivaled view of the scenic landscapes and moody skies.
  • Scenic flight transfer options: If you want a unique commute option, take a scenic flight between Queenstown and Milford Sound. You can catch some of the rarest gems from up above.
Wilderness walk at Milford sound

Milford Track is one of the best Great Walks of New Zealand. It winds through rainforests and alpine passes in Fiordland National Park.

  • Total distance: 53.5 km
  • Best time to hike: End of October to end of April
  • Great Walk season: End of October to April
  • Off-Great Walk season: May to the end of October
  • Hiking difficulty: Easy to medium
  • Getting there: Milford track is only reachable via private modes of transport so consider booking a day trip or tour with transfers included for a worry-free visit.
  • Tours: While it takes 4 days to complete the entire track, opting for a shorter Milford Track tour during your day trip is also feasible for those with limited time. It’ll allow you to explore the track and learn from an experienced guide.
People enjoying food in a restaurant

One of the best ways to experience Milford Sound is by booking a cruise with onboard dining, where lunch is included. Enjoy complimentary snacks and hot beverages during your tour as well. 

While there's only one dining restaurant in Milford Sound, there are a few small eateries to explore beyond your cruise:

  • Pio Pio Restaurant: Enjoy fine dining in a World Heritage setting at Milford Sound's only restaurant.  Indulge in locally sourced delights, a casual vibe, and 7-day availability for both lodge guests and day visitors.
  • Discover Milford Sound Information Centre & Cafe: Stop for a bite to eat and learn more about the area at this spot. Enjoy barista-made coffee, light snacks, and lunch meals.

A couple taking a selfie at Milford Sound
  • Weatherproof your adventure: Pack rainwear as it rains in Milford Sound throughout the year.  These are also handy during waterfall explorations.
  • Essentials checklist: Don't forget medication, sunglasses, a camera, insect repellant, layers, comfy shoes, and a trusty water bottle.
  • Sky-high comfort: When on a scenic flight, bring ear-muffs, especially for the little ones.
  • Furry friends stay home: Pets aren't allowed on Milford Sound tours.
  • Accessibility: For easy boarding, bring foldable wheelchairs and prams. However, adventure activities at Milford Sound are not accessible to people with disabilities. 
  • Strategic stays: Maximize your experience by staying in Te Anau or Queenstown for seamless transfers and a smoother stay.
  • Mind the motion: If prone to motion sickness, consider bringing motion sickness bands or medication. The long journey and the boat ride can get a bit choppy.

Frequently asked questions about Milford Sound cruises

What types of Milford Sound cruises are there?

You can choose from a variety of Milford Sound cruise experiences, including guided cruises, small-group walking tours on the legendary Milford Track with an addition of cruises, combo cruises with nature walks, and scenic flights for an aerial perspective.

How long does a Milford Sound cruise last?

The duration of Milford Sound cruises varies based on the specific tour you choose. Guided cruises typically last around 2 hours, while combo tours with transfers can extend to a full-day experience.

What is included in a typical Milford Sound cruise package?

A typical Milford Sound cruise package includes guided commentary by expert skippers, opportunities to witness iconic sights like Mitre Peak and waterfalls, and complimentary amenities such as tea and coffee on-board. You can also opt for packages with walking tours, scenic flights, day trips, transfers and meals too.

How much does a Milford Sound cruise cost?

Prices for Milford Sound cruises vary based on the type of experience you select. A guided cruise starts from NZD 87.

What should I wear on a Milford Sound cruise?

We recommend wearing comfortable, weather-appropriate clothing and bringing a waterproof jacket/rainwear, as Milford Sound experiences regular rainfall throughout the year. We also recommend dressing in warm layers.

What should I bring with me on a Milford Sound cruise?

Essentials to bring on a Milford Sound cruise include rainwear, medication, sunglasses, a camera, insect repellent, layers for changing weather, comfortable shoes, and a reusable water bottle.

Are Milford Sound cruises suitable for people with disabilities?

While the cruises are generally accessible, adventure activities may pose challenges for individuals with disabilities. Folding wheelchairs and prams are welcome, but certain activities may not be suitable.

What's the best time to take a Milford Sound cruise?

The best times to visit Milford Sound are during spring (September to November) and autumn (March to May). However, it's crucial to be prepared for regular rainfall, which occurs throughout the year.

Are there any restrictions on photography during the Milford Sound cruise?

There are no specific restrictions on photography during the cruise. Feel free to capture the breathtaking landscapes, waterfalls, and unique marine life.

Do Milford Sound cruise tours operate in all weather conditions?

While Milford Sound experiences rainfall throughout the year, the tours generally operate in various weather conditions. In case of adverse weather, alternative arrangements may be made.

Can I book a one-way Milford Sound cruise and return by another means of transport?

Yes, you have the flexibility to book a cruise, travel to Milford Sound by coach, and return via another means of transport, such as a scenic flight or coach, for a unique experience.

What languages are the guided commentaries on Milford Sound cruise in?

The guided commentaries are primarily in English, providing valuable insights into Milford Sound's history, culture, and natural wonders.

How can I get to Milford Sound?

Milford Sound is situated in the southwest of New Zealand's South Island. You can reach Milford Sound by various means, including guided coach tours from Te Anau or Queenstown, scenic flights, and private transfers. Additionally, day trips with transfers provide a seamless and convenient way to access Milford Sound.

Are there meals available on a Milford Sound cruise?

Yes, meals are available on Milford Sound cruises. The 2-hour cruise offers complimentary tea and coffee, while other experiences, such as the cruise with lunch or scenic flight and cruise combo, provide options for onboard dining, allowing you to savor delicious meals against the backdrop of Milford Sound's landscapes.