Monday, 24 October 2011

NZ: the famous Milford Sound

We arrived at Milford Sound in good time and in good weather - a pleasant surprise after all the dire warnings.   Milford Sound had the reputation of being the wettest place in New Zealand.  It was said that no matter how dry it was when you started out on the cruise, there would still be a good chance that you get wet weather once you're in the sound.  We were very lucky - we started off with threatening skies but it got sunny shortly into the cruise.  We picked the late afternoon cruise on the advice of one of the guide books as it would mean avoiding all the tourist buses that drove in from Queenstown for the midday cruises.  And it was excellent advice - we not only missed the hordes on the cruise, we also missed the buses and the traffic on the treacherous road to Milford Sound.  This was our view of Mitre Peak from the dock. 

Mitre Peak

Milford Sound, in Fiordland National Park, runs 15km inland from the Tasman Sea, surrounded, as you can see, by steep cliff faces on both sides.  It was acclaimed as New Zealand's most famous tourist attraction and Rudyard Kipling called it the Eighth Wonder of the World.  This landscape was reminiscent of that seen on the Western Brook Pond cruise in Gros Morne National Park in Newfoundland, Canada.  The difference is that the Western Brook Pond cruise started at the month of the fjord and went inland while the Milford Sound cruise started from the tip of the fjord and went towards the sea.  The flag in the photo below could have been Canadian and you wouldn't know the difference.   See the next photo of Western Brook Pond and you will understand what I mean.

Western Brook Pond, Gros More National Park, Newfoundland

Spectacular waterfalls - lots of rainfall here plus it's spring

What luck - a penguin!

Seals enjoying the sun

To make it more perfect - rainbows!

View from the dock in the early evening - still plenty of light for the drive back to Te Anau.  It was a good day!

No comments:

Post a Comment