Saturday, December 5, 2015

Milford Sound Cruise

Series of 2 posts:

1. Queenstown to Milford Sound
2.  Milford Sound Cruise

        Finally, after a series of a very long preparation, long hours, long rides and many kinds of transport vehicles, we are now cruising at Milford Sound. I can already say that this is a dream come true. Imagine, a plane ride from Auckland to Queenstown plus another 5-hour bus ride from there to this jetty. But in my case, i will include all my rides that includes all those from Manila to Sydney, to Brisbane, Auckland and then here. If that is not long enough then i rest my case! 

Milford Sound Cruise is very famous at the internet, and to people in nearby countries. It really sounds awesome and unusual especially for us from the tropical setting. I observed the groups nationalities in our bus and in the boat and it is a mix of so many nationalities. Many are Caucasians plus a few Asians mostly Japanese. I am sure only my sister and I are from my country, didn't see any from our neighbors in Southeast Asia. I also heared a few conversations speaking either Spanish or Portuguese, and many Europeans. 

The cruise had a very wonderful prelude of those sceneries and natural landscapes we saw in the tour bus. So these are the culmination of that story.

We are just about a few minutes from the pier in this shot. The onward view seems not straight as the islands curve and not in a straight configuration.

How awesome it is to have 360 degree angle of view, and we seem to have difficulty which side to take the pictures.

We started inside the airconditioned boat, but after the free coffee and light snack almost everybody went up to the roof deck for a more open
 continuous view of the landscape. We are maybe the first 
persons to come here, we actually hurried our coffee and sandwiches. Eventually, this space is so full of people.

Mountains seem to have very unique characteristics not repeated among all the mountains. Look at the left which has more solid rocks that hinders more profuse tree growth, versus that at the right which is 
more biodiversity friendly.

Even in a range like the above, vegetation and shapes are so 
different among themselves. 

Inclusion of that hand is intentional, thanks to whoever owns it. The index finger seems to be pointing at the bald mountain whose snowcaps already melted. 

The boat goes back when it already reached the end of the sound and about to enter the open sea, already called the Tasman Strait. I can imagine it goes direct to Tasmania in Australia. 

That mountain range at the background still has the glaciers 
characteristics of this areas. 

This mountain seems more friendly to vegetation, 
it is lower so don't have a snowline.

I often take photos of my sister to show people at home. We didn't lack tourist shots, the term we call photos with us in there. 

There are zeals sunning themselves on some rocks.

Now that mountain has a snow line, but lost also its snowcaps. Look at that waterfalls at the left side, that is tall and big, but we are still away.

There's a lot of waterfalls at Milford Sound. They are mostly the paths of melting ice from the mountain tops. Bowen Falls is of the horsetail type, at 162 m high. It is seen at the right side 5 min after the boat starts cruising.  

Stirling Falls is the most magnificent waterfalls at Milford Sound. It is a plunge type with 151 meters. It can be seen at the right side 15-20 minutes after the boat starts from the jetty. Above photo is taken at the start of the cruise, we were much nearer here on the way back. 

Left: Palisade Falls is a ribbon type falls consisting of two parts. The 1st is at 55m high and the lower at 25 meters. It is seen on the way back after the Stirling Falls. It is more porminent after the rain, but sometimes the volume of water is less prominent. 

Right: I failed to locate the name of this not permanent falls.

Stirling Falls is one of the permanent waterfalls in the area. On the way back our boat come mear it so we can sample the water spray and take more photos. The guide, in jest, said it is the Niagara Falls of Milford Sound. 

This is the jetty or pier where we start and finish our Milford Sound Cruise. The total time is 1 hr 45 min. The culmination of this escapade looks like a very short one considering the long haul and preparations for this to happen!

another view of the jetty with the mountain spike at the background

a last peek at the pier and boats of Milford Sound

The descriptions of the individual points in the map are in the link below.


  1. Gorgeous scenery! The mountains are magnificent.

  2. Beautiful! I enjoyed these wonderful photos of the scenery around Milford Sound so much and it brings back memories. You were so lucky to have a bright and sunny day when you were there, we had gloomy weather with a lot of rain, nevertheless very impressive with all those waterfalls.

    1. Thanks so much Janneke, that was a beautiful clear day when we went there. Everything is so beautiful and i felt transported to a different dimension. How lovely to go there again, using the same bus with glass roof.

  3. Oh my! Yes, New Zealand is stunning ... not doubt about it! A dream come true, indeed! Thanks for sharing some of the highlights!

  4. Great shots of the stunning scenery!

  5. Looks like a great cruise. Such a wonderful outing.

  6. I knew this was a good looking place - but it really is remarkable. NZ is very high on my 'must do' list. Maybe 2016?

    Cheers - Stewart M - Melbourne

  7. Hello, what a beautiful cruise. The mountain scenery is gorgeous. I love the seals and the pretty waterfalls. Lovely collection of photos. Happy Tuesday, enjoy your day!

  8. Wow! What a cruise and fantastic photography!

    Wishing you the love and magic of the season,
    artmusedog and carol

  9. What a beautiful place to be able to visit by boat. I love that you included your observations like "biodiversity friendly"... Michelle

  10. Definitely a must do for visitors. The sceneries are fantastic.

    Emma and Buster

  11. I see why visiting this place is a dream come true, the surroundings are beyond beautiful. I have heard you are lucky if it is sunny during your visit.

    1. Oh i didn't hear that, but even if it is foggy it is still very meaningfull and beautiful. You should look at the post before this, as the road going there is also magnificent. We didn't feel the 5hr bus ride. Thanks for dropping by.

  12. Those mountains and falls are stunning, great scenery for your camera. It was nice you saw the seals too. You had a marvelous cruise and a rather long journey.

    1. Yes Donna, it was a long journey but not felt that way because of the novelty of those scenes to my eyes! I am from the tropics, you know, hehe!

  13. Wow! I would love to take this ride!
    In fact, the landscape is not unlike the Norwegian coast.

    1. Oh so it might be so awesome for me because ours in the tropics is much different from that. I've always loved snowcaps because we don't have them. Thanks for dropping by.

  14. Oh, your photos bring back such wonderful memories! We lived in New Zealand for 18 months about 5 years ago and visited Milford Sound twice. Once the weather was clear and we saw all the mountain tops beautifully, and the second time is was raining but also beautiful because there were thousands of waterfalls that only appear in the rain. What a special place! (P.S. I responded to your comment on my blog.)

    1. Oh hi Karen, i am so glad that at least i shared something that you also saw. It would be very interesting to see your photos there, that way i can get some information of what should have been. Thanks Karen.

  15. What a truly beautiful place


  16. What a spectacular boat ride this must have been for you and your sister. The mountains are incredible in the abrupt way they emerge from the water and soar to what looks like an amazing height. The waterfall was breathtaking!

    1. Yes Jennifer it was amazing, and the 5 hour in the bys to get there is equally incredible. I am highly recommending it. Thanks for dropping by.

  17. An utterly amazing voyage! What scenery - and lovely to see the photo of your sister, too!


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