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Driving time to Milford Sound from Te Anau

Malaysia
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Driving time to Milford Sound from Te Anau

My family will be visting Te Anau and Milford Sound in late Dec as part of our self drive tour to South Island.

We are scheduled to arrive Te Anau from Wanaka at noon and will spend the rest of the day at Te Anau.

We plan to join the first scenic cruise the following day, which I understand is departing at 9.00am.

1. What time should I leave Te Anau for Milford Sound in order to have a relax drive and on time for the cruise ride at 9.00am?

2. What is the daylight hours for late Dec in Milford Sound / Te Anau / Q'town? 5.00 am - 10.00pm?

3. When the Realjourneys scenic cruise will open for online booking for Dec departure?

Thank you.

New Zealand
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1. Re: Driving time to Milford Sound from Te Anau

Hi Newcomer

You need to leave early. Once at Milford the walk from the parking lot to the wharf takes 10 minutes and you need to check in 20 minutes before departure time. The drive itself, without stops, is about 1 hour, 40 minutes so allow yourself plenty of time on the road. You can always stop and see the sights on the way out, after the cruise. Or you could enjoy the lovely scenic road and take the bus. It's far less stressful and at least you know that if anything happens on the road the boat won't leave without you.

New Zealand
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2. Re: Driving time to Milford Sound from Te Anau

sorry, forgot to add;

It should be light by about 5:30 am.

I'm sure Real Journeys will open the online booking for Dec in plenty of time. The mid-day cruises always book up first, so you won't miss out.

Malaysia
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3. Re: Driving time to Milford Sound from Te Anau

Thank you WanakaLakes

When time will it turn dark in late Dec?

I am just toying the idea of driving from Wanaka early in the morning straight to Milford Sound and take the afternoon scenic cruise, say departing at about 3pm.

After the cruise ride, return to Te Anau and put a night there. From Te Anau, we will proceed to Q'town and spend a few days there.

TQ

New Zealand
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4. Re: Driving time to Milford Sound from Te Anau

Late Dec it will get dark about 9:30 - 10pm.

I would strongly suggest you don't go Wanaka - Milford - cruise - Milford - Te Anau in one day. It's over 500kms and we don't have super highways here. The driving alone will take you over 6 hours without allowing time for rest, food, sightseeing.

Far better, and far safer, to do Wanaka - Te Anau one day, then Milford - cruise - Queenstown the next. That way you will actually enjoy the experience and you can take a day off your Queenstown time. In Te Anau the Glow Worm Caves and the short movie 'Shadowlands' are both well worth seeing.

Heilbronn, Germany
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5. Re: Driving time to Milford Sound from Te Anau

I can only agree WanakaLakes do'nt make the cruise at the same day when you traviling from Wanaka.

While our trip we arrived from Dunedin at noon time. At the next morning we start at 7 am to Milford Sound. So early it's a good time to drive the beautifull scenic drive. There are no choachs on the way.

You should drive without any stops in the morning directly to the Sound and when you drive back to Te Anau you can make the stops.

Enjoy your stay!

6. Re: Driving time to Milford Sound from Te Anau

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