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Milford Sound OR Doubtful Sound

Auckland
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65 posts
3 reviews
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Milford Sound OR Doubtful Sound

Hi,

I am doing a 5 day South Island trip and I have time for only one of the two. Would have loved to do both.

Both place look very good .. any recomendations ..

Thanks

Varun

Providence, RI
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42 posts
234 reviews
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1. Re: Milford Sound OR Doubtful Sound

Hi, there. We just came back from NZ a week ago. I also had that question, and I think it's a matter of how much time you have. We wanted to do so many other things in the Queenstown area, so we not only chose to go to Milford Sound, but we chose to do it by helicopter...and it was AWESOME. It was a 2 1/2-hour roundtrip, and we even landed on a mountaintop, flew over Milford Sound, and landed for champagne on a glacier!

The problem that can happen with a bus--cruise--fly trip to Milford Sound is that afternoon weather often turns bad, and then everyone that was going to fly home has to go on the bus...and the bus ride is 7--8 hours EACH WAY. It's a long day.

Helicopters handle air currents better than planes, and the views were fantastic. But it ain't cheap!

Anyway...good luck. You will love the area no matter what you choose.

San Francisco, CA
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993 posts
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2. Re: Milford Sound OR Doubtful Sound

The bus ride from Milford Sound to Queenstown is <5 hours each way, including a stop in Te Anau. Day trips from Queenstown do include ~9 hours in the bus, a good reason to spend a night on the boat or in Te Anau, or fly one way. If small planes aren't flying, neither are the helicopters.

I've just done an overnight trip in Doubtful Sound, and while I loved it, think a day trip would be very rushed.

New Zealand
Destination Expert
for South Island
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3. Re: Milford Sound OR Doubtful Sound

If wanting a day trip then Milford Sound is a fabulous. You can drive from Te Anau or coach from Queenstown.

If looking for an overnight trip then go Doubtful Sound.

Enjoy :)

South Island
Destination Expert
for South Island
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4. Re: Milford Sound OR Doubtful Sound

Milford Sound coach cruise and fly back to Queenstown is the best option for a day trip. Doubtful is a great over night trip.

Helicopters will fly in almost all weather conditions and will often fly when the small fixed wing planes can't operate. If you can afford it, fly back to Queenstown from Milford Sound in a helicopter. Some tour company coach drivers also allow the option of a shorter cheaper helicopter flight after the cruise and to me its the best helicopter experience in New Zealand.

Ask your coach driver if he can organize it

5. Re: Milford Sound OR Doubtful Sound

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