Visiting Milford Sound isn’t all about the time you spend on the water. The drive to reach your catamaran is almost as jaw-dropping as a cruise. Don’t miss out on Fiordland’s wonders – make time to stop along the way to Milford Sound!
The road to Milford Sound is crammed with lakes, short walks, longer hikes, waterfalls, and beautiful look outs. Get amongst it and grab that classic photo op or find something off the beaten track! It’s not only places you might discover - Taking the time to check out that short walk may be when you meet your travel buddy for the rest of your South Island adventure. If you’ve opted for a JUCY Coach & Cruise tour, we’ve got the best stops covered. Self-drivers, take note of the loveliest places to pull over.
Here are five of the top pit stops to make along the way to Milford Sound.
1. LAKE GUNN
The lovely Lake Gunn is an obligatory stop on the road to Milford Sound. Active road-trippers can tackle the 45-minute loop track that runs through rainforest and red beech rainforest. If you just want to stop for a breath of fresh air and a nice view, check out the Lake Gunn Lookout point instead.
2. POP’S VIEW LOOKOUT (HOLLYFORD VALLEY)
This roadside lookout point is the perfect spot to enjoy views of the Hollyford Valley. It’s worth a quick stop to snap some photos and soak in the natural beauty of the area.
3. MONKEY CREEK
Monkey Creek is another stop-off point where you can enjoy vistas of the Hollyford Valley. The creek itself is pristine and you can fill up your water bottle directly from the stream! If you’re lucky, you might also spot kea and the whio (blue duck) waddling around.
4. Gertrude Valley
The Gertrude Valley Saddle walk starts out one kilometre before the Homer Tunnel on your way to Milford Sound. The whole walk is about four to six hours return, but the first 800 metres makes a great stroll and pit stop on the way to Milford Sound. The track starts out along a riverbed at the end of Gertrude Valley. This easy walk gives you great views of the surrounding mountains.
5. The Chasm
An easy 15-minute return walk, The Chasm is a great place to stretch your legs while enjoying some enchanting waterfall tableaus. Two footbridges over the Cleddau River give you a look at the series of waterfalls tumbling over rock shaped by thousands of years of rushing water.
Next time you book a Milford Sound Cruise be sure to allow plenty of time to stop along the way, you won’t regret it!