Milford Sound is an area of extraordinary beauty. It offers a majestic fiord, dramatic and awe inspiring scenery and prolific flora and fauna. Although the flight to and from Milford Sound has regularly been described as the most stunning part of our tour options, combining this with a Milford cruise on the fiord happens to be the most popular option.
After check-in completion, your pilot will give a thorough pre-flight briefing on the route and scenic highlights likely to be encountered. These include the famous Skippers Canyon, the Paradise region (recently made popular as film locations for Lord of the Rings/Hobbit Trilogies), and the Donne glacier among many other awe-inspiring features. Your 35 minute flight concludes with an over flight of the fiord of Milford Sound, prior to landing.
The second half of the adventure begins in Milford Sound, where your pilot personally escorts you to the boat docks to board the “Sprit of Milford” to enjoy your Milford Sound Nature Cruise.Numbers aboard are capped at 150 passengers and on this intimate experience, Nature Guides offer a personal commentary. The “Spirit of Milford” catamaran explores nooks and crannies along the edge of the fiord, nudging into sheer rock faces to examine flora and fauna in detail.
Following your Milford Sound cruise you return flight takes in many of the pristine alpine lakes and waterfalls that Fiordland National Park is recognised for, including the Sutherland Falls which span 580m (1900ft). Flight time is another 35 minutes, with a total trip time of approximately 4 hours. After enjoying your Scenic Flight back from Milford Sound you will land back in Queenstown to complete the journey.
Why do Air Milford choose to link with a Nature Cruise?
This ‘ecotour’ is perfect for close-up shots of seals basking on the rocks, birds and other Fiordlandwildlife, including dolphins ‘riding’ the bow wave and the rarest penguin in the world, the Fiordland crested penguin (Spring & Autumn).
Join the skipper on the bridge for a birds-eye view and see first-hand how the boat operates, whilst helping yourself to complimentary tea, coffee and filter water.
The smaller boat helps you appreciate the sheer size and grandeur of the fiord’s cliff faces rising hundreds of meters out of the water, scarred here and there by tree falls. You’ll get within touching distance of impressive geological features and close enough to catch and drink pure glacial water, or feel the full force from the powerful 15,000-year-old Stirling Falls (they’ve got jackets on board to keep you dry!).
Because of the weather dependent nature of flying in the Southern Alps to Milford Sound, we recommend booking in for your first available day in Queenstown. So that, should the weather be unfavorable for flying on the first day, you will have maximum flexibility to roll your excursion on to a following fine weather day.