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Milford Sound

Milford Sound is a mecca for travellers in New Zealand.

Some walk the Milford Track from Te Anau to Milford Sound - a three and a half day walk which has been described as "the most beautiful walk in the world". This requires a reasonable degree of fitness and needs to be booked well in advance. If you want to do the guided walk it is much more expensive than freedom walking, but everything for the trampers' comfort is provided and they need carry only their personal belongings. Those who can carry a heavy pack may choose to do the Track as a freedom walker, but no camping is allowed and the huts which are designated for freedom walkers have to be booked in advance. The track is open from November to mid-April.

Thousands of visitors every year make a day trip to Milford Sound from Te Anau or even Queenstown. (The accommodation in Milford itself is very limited.) Take plenty of film on this trip.The scenery along the road is magnificent, and there are numerous places which tempt travellers to take photos.

The road which was a challenge to its builders runs beside Lake Te Anau, then along the Eglinton Valley between towering mountains, and then to the head of the Hollyford Valley. The last area was opened up when the Homer Tunnel was built taking travellers to the Cleddau Valley and dropping steeply down to Milford Sound.

Milford Sound - Mitre Peak
Milford Sound - Mitre Peak - Credit- Peter Hunt

Once there visitors can take a boat trip past the steep sides of much photographed Mitre Peak out to the Tasman Sea and have the opportunity of visiting the Milford Deep Underwater Observatory, a floating platform moored to a sheer rock wall in Harrison Cove.

If the weather is fine the mountain tops are clear, but if it is wet there are abundant and impressive waterfalls everywhere. Remember that the weather is uncertain at all times of the year, so take a warm waterproof jacket and don't forget some sandfly repellent.

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