Down here in the South of New Zealand you will find one of the country’s most beautiful national parks. Fiordland National Park on the border of Lake Te Anau and Lake Manapouri is very popular with visitors to New Zealand. If you have been you will know why, if you are yet to visit let us tell you. There are 12 fiords in Fiordland National Park and Milford Sound is the only one accessible by road. The journey to Doubtful Sound is quite the adventure.
Your day will most likely start in Te Anau or Queenstown depending on your departure time. If you are based in Te Anau then our shuttle that'll drive you through to the Manapouri visitor centre.
Here you will board a boat for the one-hour cruise across Lake Manapouri. Your destination is West Arm, famous in New Zealand as it is home to the Manapouri power station. Completed in 1971, Manapouri Power Station is an underground power station on the west arm of Lake Manapouri. With 850 megawatts installed capacity, it is New Zealand's largest hydro-electric power station.
From West Arm, you will board the Go Orange bus and head over the Wilmott Pass. Now, The Wilmott pass is pretty awesome, the steady incline to the lookout over Doubtful Sound is breathtaking and one that on a good day will be perfect for photographs. The road was purpose-built to aid the construction of the Manapouri Power Station. It took two years for the road to be carved through the mountains and bush with a full length of 20km. It is one of few roads down here in Fiordland and offers spectacular views of the valleys, mountains and cascading waterfalls.
Once you have filled your memory cards on the 50-minute journey over the pass you will finally reach Deep Cove. This is where all cruise and kayak operations depart. On a clear day, the inky black water will reflect the surrounding mountains perfectly, again, the chance to fill up your cameras. Enjoy two blissful hours cruising through the Fiord before heading back the way you came and on to your onward travels.
We have put together five epic facts about Doubtful Sound to help feed that wanderlust a little more…
That’s all folks for our wrap up on Doubtful Sound, we hope to see you in Fiordland soon. Book here