I had read so many rapturous accounts of Milford Sound that part of me expected to be a little let down. Then we got to Queenstown and I was so bowled over by the beauty and I wondered if it could be better than the views of Lake Wakatipu or the Remarkable mountains.
Yes it can.
We booked the Real Journey‘s tour of Milford Sound and joined a busload of people heading out of Queenstown at 7 a.m. in the morning. We drove along Lake Wakatipu and then entered an agricultural valley with sheep and commercially-reared deer in the paddocks lining the 2 lane road. When we entered the area called Fairlight I felt my body relax and exhale a sigh. The light and air were so lovely. We stopped at Mirror Lake and we gaped at the beauty. We took a bathroom break and grabbed a coffee in Te Anau (Tea Ah Now). I grabbed some yummy meat pies at the bakery even though we were provided lunch as we boarded the boat. I was surprised that you had to pay $1NZ to use the public facilities. These were outlawed in California in the 1970s because they are discriminatory to women (men can go anywhere!) However, there was a full time attendant and it was very clean.
At last we arrived at the Milford Sound harbor and moved from the bus to a boat. Mom and I hung out on the prow of the boat, braving the elements to avoid getting seasick. The wind was strong on the way out and not a factor on the return. The weather was so fine it was stunning.
Milford Sound is a fiord and a mighty fine fiord. I kept my eyes wide open for a kea parrot or a Fiordland penguin. Alas the only wildlife visible were New Zealand seals.
I took 589 pictures on this day! These are just a few of the wonderful snaps I captured.