Fiordland - Doubtful Sound
Doubtful Sound an unforgettable, breath-taking, remote, dazzling, must-see fiord in New Zealand’s wild southwest – at Doubtful Sound you are perfectly surrounded by untouched Mother Nature at its very best. Doubtful Sound is one of Fiordland’s two accessible fiords and is characterised by a large number of stunning branches, hidden inlets, picturesque islands, thundering waterfalls, vertical cliff faces and lush-mossy rainforest. Doubtful Sound’s main activities are scenic cruises, overnight cruises, kayaking, fishing and scenic flights. more
Doubtful Sound is perhaps the most inaccessible of New Zealand’s major attractions – apart from accessing the fiord via the sea – the only way to reach the fiord is by taking a cruise over the large and stunningly picturesque Lake Manipouri and then busing over the ranges and down to the fiord. This incredible journey just to get there, is part of what make Doubtful Sound so special. All visitors first cruise the incredible Lake Manipouri – an forgettable lake characterised by innumerable islands, lush rainforest, scores of hidden lake branches and inlets, sandy beaches, cascading waterfalls and towering rugged mountains. Secondly visitors are driven through some of New Zealand’s most pristine untouched alpine scenery, and then finally reach this secluded hidden wonder of nature. Many visitors choose to stay overnight on the cruise ships and awake to secluded Doubtful Sound’s famed “sound of silence”. Doubtful Sound offers the perfect less-commercialised alternative to Milford Sound presenting the ideal opportunity to explore more of the hidden secrets of the deepest parts of Fiordland National Park.
Hewn by mighty glaciers during past ice ages, Doubtful Sound today stands as a testament to the awesome power and awe-inspiring sculpturing ability of glaciers. Glacial hewn U-Shaped valleys, sheer vertical cliff faces and glacial hanging valleys characterise the landscape, and as you gaze in wonder you will be overcome with its sheer beauty and majesty. Doubtful Sound is actually a fiord (a flooded valley formed by a glacier – while a flooded valley formed by a river is a sound). Stretching for about 40 kilometres and reaching depths of 421 metres, Doubtful Sound is 3 times longer and 10 times larger than Milford Sound as well as New Zealand’s deepest fiord.
Doubtful Sound hosts both a rich and peculiar marine eco-system. Not only does Doubtful Sound boast a resident population of about 70 bottlenose dolphins (among the world’s southernmost), but also populations of endemic Fiordland Crested Penguins, fur seals, sea birds and sometimes large whales (especially humpback whales and southern right whales). Sitting on top of Doubtful Sound lies a layer of 2-10 metre thick fresh water (depending on the latest rainfall). Below this stained layer of freshwater (stained by tannins from the rainforest) is the heavier, warmer salt water. Due to the tanned layer of freshwater above blocking the light – deep sea creatures, like black coral, flourish just 10 metres below the surface (ordinarily living 30-40 metres below).
The climate of Doubtful Sound is mild temperatures and very wet. Temperatures typically range from highs of 19C in summer to about 9.5C in winter. Rainfall averages in excess of 6500mm annually making Doubtful Sound one of the wettest places in the world with rainfall 180 days a year. On a sunny day Doubtful Sound brightens up revealing its incredible mountain peaks and awe-inspiring views, on a rainy day the moody sound comes alive with gushing walls of waterfalls, cascading from sheer cliffs around you. All year round – regardless of the weather – Doubtful Sound is a profound, unforgettable wonder of nature.
Doubtful Sound has only limited accommodation facilities. Most accommodation options in Doubtful Sound are in the form of cabins on the cruise boats. Otherwise most people stay in the stunning lakeside resort towns of Te Anau and Queenstown.
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What Do You Want To Do?
Mobile-friendly - Air Milford proudly operates the only brand new Cessna Caravan aircraft. This aircraft offers leather seating, quiet air conditioned comfort and great viewing for all passengers. It is one of the safest aircraft flying today. Eco-tours, aircraft charters, fishing, hunting and personalised tours. Flights to Milford Sound, Doubtful Sound, the Southern Alps and Glaciers.
Mobile-friendly - Your friendly hosts warmly welcome you to share their stunning purpose-built guest accommodation. Surrounded by majestic scenery, with lakefront location, Cathedral Peaks is your ideal base for relaxing or exploring Lake Manapouri, Doubtful Sound, Milford Sound, Te Anau, and the outstanding attractions of Fiordland. Well-appointed guestrooms, en suite bathrooms, cooked breakfasts, free Internet, set in paradise. Enquire about pricing options.
Mobile-friendly - For a unique experience, forget about the crowds and come join us on the water in a sea kayak. We guarantee your visit to Lake Manapouri and Doubtful Sound will be memorable. This rich variety of landscape makes Fiordland a popular destination for those who want to experience the sights and sounds of nature at a close, personal level.
Mobile-friendly - Explore isolated and beautiful Doubtful Sound aboard the MV Southern Secret as part of our personalised tour of Doubtful Sound. View marine animals such as dolphins, seals and penguins that call the fiord home; at night listen for the calls of Morepork and Weka! Activities onboard include fishing, scrumptious meals, swimming and star gazing. Join our journey of discovery today.
Mobile-friendly - As you board, your friendly crew will welcome you with a glass of bubbly to set the mood for you to take in the majesty of this awesome World Heritage area. Cruise amongst breath-taking mountain vistas with your captain giving an informative commentary on the area, its' history and how Fiordland was formed, as playful bottle-nose dolphins surf alongside.
We show visitors Fiordland like a friend would, and connect them with what they'd like to do here for an unforgettable experience. All our carefully crafted trips and journeys explore Fiordland National Park. Most are privately guided or small groups, with every care and detail taken care of.
Milford Track/Kepler Track/Jet Boat Fishing/Fly Fishing/Private Fiordland Journeys
Mobile-friendly - Enjoy the longest, least crowded, best valued 2-hour cruise on the Milford Sound or a full-day experience on the more isolated Doubtful Sound. Take in the awesome majesty of mountains, rainforest, unique birds and sea creatures. Or glide right in amongst it in one of our kayaks alongside an experienced guide on your choice of one of 4 kayaking adventures.
Mobile-friendly - Spectacular scenic helicopter flights to Milford Sound, Fiordland, and the Queenstown region. Based in Glenorchy, NZ - the real "Middle Earth", a 45 minute lakeside drive from Queenstown. For an even more exclusive skiing experience, why not try a day of heli-skiing in untouched alpine terrain. Heli Glenorchy offers boutique heli-skiing in the spectacular mountains surrounding Queenstown, Wanaka and Glenorchy.
Looking for the very best of New Zealand for your 'Trip of a Lifetime'? You'll love our friendly small groups and relaxed pace as you discover the true flavour of New Zealand in comfort and style. We’re all Kiwis, we grew up here and can’t wait to show you all our favourites and introduce you to our mates!
Mobile-friendly - At New Zealand Self Drive Tours we can custom design your perfect New Zealand holiday package. With over 200 different tour suggestions, every one of our self drive itineraries are 100% customisable, allowing you to incorporate any of our excellent range of activities and accommodations. Chat with our New Zealand travel experts to begin crafting your dream New Zealand holiday!
Mobile-friendly - Explore Doubtful Sound with Real Journeys, a local company that has operated excursions in Fiordland for 60 years. Choose day, overnight or coach/cruise options: *Wilderness Day Cruises - a three-hour wilderness cruise through the fiord with our on-board nature guide. *Overnight Cruises - the ultimate dinner, bed and breakfast experience in Doubtful Sound (private en suite cabins).
Mobile-friendly - Discover Fiordland, Queenstown and Te Anau with Real Journeys, a local company that has guided excursions into these unique areas for 60 years. Choose day, overnight or coach/cruise options to Milford Sound and Doubtful Sound. Visit the Te Anau Glowworms Caves, try the Milford Track Guided Day Walk, Queenstown's iconic TSS Earnslaw Steamship and Walter Peak High Country Farm.
Mobile-friendly - Locally owned company offering outstanding range of tours in Milford Sound. Both day and overnight cruises that explore this magnificent fiord. Luxury coach transfers from Queenstown and Te Anau and flight connections to/from Milford Sound/Queenstown.
Mobile-friendly - Here is a golden opportunity to enter the dress circle of New Zealand's tourist circuit. A sturdy, high-class, well-maintained vessel and an operation geared to achieve. Our vessel offers a variety of unique cruises around the fabulous Stewart Island and Fiordland - an area keenly sought by diving, hunting and fishing parties. This is a unique opportunity for the discerning.
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A Walk In the Park: POSTPONED
Take a walk in the park with a ranger to demystify bush walking, experience Fiordland for the first time, or learn about the natural and cultural history of this special place on our doorstep. Hosted in collaboration ...
Where: Kepler Track, Manapouri, Fiordland
Address: Fiordland National Park, Manapouri, Fiordland
From: 10:00am on Saturday 19th January 2019
To: 4:00pm on Saturday 19th January 2019
Birds, Bats and Banana Splits
Meet the Eglinton Valley bat monitoring team and learn about the amazing creatures they work with. Share a banana split as the sun sets and then head into the forest to discover the creatures of the night! $5 ...
Where: Knobs Flat, Eglinton Valley, Te Anau, Fiordland
Address: 6178 Te Anau Milford Highway, Te Anau, Fiordland
From: 7:30pm on Friday 25th January 2019
To: 1:00am on Sunday 27th January 2019
Fiordland All Girls Adventure
Explore Fiordland your way... Our girls only adventure has become an annual event for likeminded girls, woman, chicks, mothers, sisters, grandmothers, daughters, wives, girlfriends. So come and explore the remote ...
Where: Dusky Sound, Te Anau, Southland
Address: 55 Fergus Square
From: 11:00am on Thursday 14th February 2019
To: 1:00pm on Monday 18th February 2019
St. John Workplace First Aid Training
Attain your St. John First Aid Level 1 certificate (valid for two years). Ideal for anyone who wants to learn basic first aid or needs to update their first aid qualification. Minimum qualification requirement for a ...
Where: Te Anau Club, Te Anau, Fiordland
Address: Pop Andrew Drive, Te Anau, Fiordland
From: 8:30am on Thursday 21st March 2019
To: 5:00pm on Thursday 21st March 2019