Kayak Doubtful Sound 3 Days

Departure Locations

When driving to Manapouri please allow at least 3 hours from Queenstown and around 30 minutes from Te Anau. You will need to meet at the Go Orange Visitor centre for check in 20 minutes prior to departure.

Go Orange, Waiau Street, Pearl Harbour, Manapouri

Minimum Requirements

  • Prior paddling experience preferred - our staff will be in contact to discuss your prior experience and suitability
  • Competence in water and moderate fitness required; minimum age 16 years
  • Kayakers supply own food
  • It is essential you join us at 4pm the day before (at our base in Te Anau) to answer questions and work through details - e.g. food, equipment, advise your height and weight (wetsuit sizing), etc.

What to bring

Kayaking gives you a whole new perspective to this immensely overpowering corner of the world and here at Go Orange we aim to challenge the ordinary and leave you, our trusted travellers, with memories that are unsurpassable. We will take you deeper into the unknown, discovering islands, hidden coves and the dramatic landscape. Doubtful Sound is also one of the wettest places in Fiordland National Park, kayaking here is an unforgettable experience, no matter the weather. With this in mind, we have prepared the following list in case we encounter all the elements.

  • Swimsuit or underwear (for wearing underneath wetsuit vest/long johns)
  • Plastic bag for wet gear
  • Shorts
  • Soft shoes (e.g. trainers/runners) or sandals (note they will get wet)
  • Warm socks
  • Towel
  • Sunblock / Sun hat / Sun glasses
  • Insect repellant
  • Camera (disposable or waterproof)
  • Water bottle
  • Change of clothes – socks, footwear and rain jacket for wearing after kayaking

Camping/ After kayaking

  • Next to skin layer of clothing (polyprop or wool)
  • Warm tops, Long trousers or track pants
  • Towel
  • Underwear & Warm socks & Warm hat
  • Shoes for campsite
  • Waterproof jacket & Rain trousers (if available)
  • Sleeping bag
  • Torch / flashlight
  • Toiletries
  • Personal medication
  • Spare plastic bags (ziplock)
  • Food (Te Anau has two good supermarkets which stay open late)
  • Additional campsite clothing is required for 3 – 5 day trips

What we provide

  • Kayaking

    • Thermal top
    • Long john wetsuit
    • Fleece top & Fleece hat
    • Paddle jacket & Spray deck
    • Life jacket (buoyancy vest) & Pogies (paddling gloves)
    • Dry bags (for clothing and camera)
    • Map
    • Double kayaks / paddles
    • Group safety and emergency gear
  • Camping

    • One or two person tents
    • Thermarests
    • Gas cookers (food needs to be quick to cook)
    • Plate, cup and eating utensils
    • Pots & cooking utensils
    • Chairs
    • Communal shelter (insect proof)

What to wear when kayaking

Please wear your swimsuit or kayaking underwear layer beneath warm clothes/waterproof jacket on pick-up (makes changing into paddling gear easier and quicker). The best way to carry your other gear to the launch point is in a backpack.

What food to take when kayaking

On a kayaking trip, you will eat more than usual and there is plenty of storage space on the kayaks. Bring food that is simple but nourishing. Please remove excess packaging and carry food in bags (supermarket cloth bags are ideal).
Food Suggestions:

  • Snacks: Bananas, chocolate, muesli bars
  • Lunches: Sandwich type food (cheese, salami, tuna), fruit, biscuits
  • Evening meal: pasta, rice or noodles with sauce plus soft vegetables, meat, canned fish
  • Breakfast: cereals, fruit, yoghurt, toast, baked beans

Safety & Risk

Sea kayaking and wilderness camping have inherent risks and can be dangerous. In Fiordland, they are characterised by: remoteness, rapidly changing and sometimes extreme weather and water conditions, cold water, limited kayaking landing sites and camping under forest canopy.

Detailed risk management and strict safety procedures are observed, however, there still remains an element of risk. Go Orange cannot absolutely guarantee participants safety. Go Orange accepts its legal responsibilities but cannot be held responsible for personal injury or for loss, theft or damage of/to your equipment outside legal responsibilities. Participants will be required to sign a liability form to this effect before starting a tour.

Changing conditions can mean that tours have to be modified. No two tours are the same. It is very rare but weather could delay your scheduled return by up to 24 hours e.g. road closures or weather conditions preventing kayaking. Clients on guided tours must listen carefully to and follow guides' instructions and adhere to safety requirements. Our reputation depends on your safety – we give it top priority and take it seriously.


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