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Spending a Night on Milford Sound

6 March, 2012

Milford Sound is not a place that lends itself well to words. Although this is true for New Zealand as a whole, at Milford it is especially so. The vistas are hard to describe. The scale is too big to compare anything else in life to it. Pictures come closer, but still fail in ways. However words, pictures and humor are all I got to show you, so here goes.

We drove most of the morning through the Fiordland National Park to get to Milford. My first of this magical place was through the bus window. I knew I wanted to get the postcard picture for myself. This was almost it, but not quite. I had all night and the next day to get Miter Peak all centered up, so I didn’t stress.

 Biggest Bathroom EVER

The first stop is the visitor center. We had been on the bus for several hours and I desperately needed to use bathroom. This was the largest bathroom I think I have ever been in. As an example I counted 24 urinals. I have seen ballpark bathrooms with fewer. My only explanation is that when all of the cruise ships unload at the same time and everyone has 15 minutes to make their buses, they need the capacity. So, thankful we are on a relaxing schedule with our overnight cruise.

And then the cruise.

We got on our boat and started cruising the sound/fiord. I know there was a naturalist explaining really neat things. But really with views like this, how can you listen? The sun that followed us the entire way through the park was making Milford Sound even more beautiful for us. Although these were nice shots, we had passed the traditional postcard angle of the peak. I would have to wait.

Out to sea to see what we could see at sea.

The first day’s cruise was out to the edge of the Tasman sea and the mouth of Milford Sound. The afternoon time was spent kayaking on the sound and the evening spend talking and drinking with friends. After dark, the boat wandered back too a sheltered cove.

 

And then came beer..

 So the next morning

The next morning saw another loop of the sound. Eggs and sausage made the hangover less apparent. By the time I finished breakfast and got out to take shots again, we were out at the Tasman again. So this morning was almost the return journey of the previous day’s outward cruise.

Falling in love with Milford Sound

We got closer looks at the spectacular falls of the fiord, with Stirling Falls being the stunner. It towers up so far above the boat. The whole area, although rocky, is definitely also green. We saw trees growing on sheer cliffs. Although our weather was sunny, Milford Sound gets tons of rain a year, so anything that can grow will.

Reflecting on a Journey

I still hadn’t seen my post card picture. My camera batteries were not dealing well with all the shots of beautiful mountains and unsuccessful shots of playful dolphins. I didn’t want to miss The Shot. I did manage to get a few reflection shots in the cove that apparently sheltered us last night.

But then…

Just as we were heading back to dock, I got my perfect shot. My batteries lasted in the end. Though looking back I didn’t get just one postcard, but a bunch.

 

Thanks Real Journeys

This overnight on Milford Sound was with Real Journeys. Although they gave us a discount, all the words and humor and opinions are my own. It really was a great trip and I am glad we booked the overnight.

Also read more about our night on the water at Ali’s site:
Milford Sound – Before the Cruise
Milford Sound Overnight Cruise

Also thanks to Hecktic Travels for the inspiration to turn photographs into postcards for a post.

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Category: Phototour

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10 Responses to Spending a Night on Milford Sound

  1. Zinedine says:

    This is so awesome, air must be so clean!

  2. Wow, that is spectacular! You even got some German food too! :)

  3. Payje says:

    That is SOOO beautiful! I have always wanted to go to New Zealand, your pictures are awesome.

    • Andrew says:

      Thanks so much for the compliment and comment. Especially if you are into nature and such, NZ is really a great place to spend some time.

  4. Wow, what an incredible experience. We’re really looking forward to checking out Milford Sound one day.

  5. Alison says:

    This sounds like a great trip, Milford Sound looks truly stunning! I especially love all of the waterfalls :-)

    • Andrew says:

      Thanks. The waterfalls are one of the best aspects. We didn’t have any rain. And they said it had been a dry season, so many of the waterfalls had dried up. However we were told when it rains the number o falls goes up dramatically. I guess the ideal time would be a few hours of sun after lots of rain.

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