The 5 Wonders of Fiordland National Park

Brilliant Rentals - Top 5 Wonders of Fiordland National Park

Fiordland National Park is a paradise for nature lovers and adventurers alike, providing a perfect setting for activities such as kayaking, fishing, and bird-watching. Its untouched beauty and serene environment make it a must-visit destination for anyone looking to experience the wild and wonderful heart of New Zealand.


1. Milford Sound

Brilliant Rentals - Top 5 Wonders of Fiordland National Park

Milford Sound (Piopiotahi) is situated within a 1.2 million hectare UNESCO World Heritage-listed national park. This stunning fjord extends 16 kilometres to the Tasman Sea. In the Piopiotahi Marine Reserve, you can discover dolphins, penguins, and seals, all protected within this pristine environment. The area is famous for its waterfalls, which rival some of the world’s tallest and are especially spectacular on rainy days. A scenic cruise is highly recommended, offering you the chance to get up close to these magnificent waterfalls.


Distance: ~118km,1hr43mins from Te Anau
Things to do: scenic cruises, kayaking, Milford track and underwater observatory

Read more about Milford Sound


2. Doubtful Sound

Brilliant Rentals - Top 5 Wonders of Fiordland National Park

Doubtful Sound (Patea) stretches an impressive 40 kilometres (25 miles) from the head of the Fiordland to the Tasman Sea.

The fiord splits into three distinct arms, allowing scenic cruise passengers to get up close to towering cliff faces, magnificent waterfalls, and serene overnight anchorages. It is also a sanctuary for New Zealand’s southernmost population of bottlenose dolphins and the rare Fiordland Crested Penguin (Tawaki).


Distance: ~21.6km, 17 mins from Te Anau to Manapouri. And then boat transfer from Manapouri.
Things to do: tours, overnight cruises, scenic flight

Read more about Doubtful Sound


3. Te Anau

Brilliant Rentals - Top 5 Wonders of Fiordland National Park

Te Anau situated on the shores of the South Island’s largest lake, Lake Te Anau, serves as the stunning gateway for those venturing into the wilderness of Fiordland or seeking tranquility and relaxation.

With three of New Zealand’s ten Great Walks nearby, Te Anau is renowned as the country’s walking capital. From here, you can embark on multi-day hiking adventures.


Distance: ~171km, 2 hours from Queenstown

Things to do: Lake cruises, glowworm cave tours, jet boating, fishing, scenic flights

Read more about Te Anau


4. The Great Walks

Brilliant Rentals - Top 5 Wonders of Fiordland National Park

Fiordland boasts three of New Zealand’s Great Walks: the Milford Track, Kepler Track, and Routeburn Track. These trails typically require several days to complete and demand a good level of fitness and thorough preparation. Each walk offers unique landscapes, from majestic mountains and pristine lakes to lush rainforests and stunning waterfalls.It is recommended to hike them during the Great Walks season (late October to late April).


Read more about the Great Walks in Fiordland


5. Underwater World

Brilliant Rentals - Top 5 Wonders of Fiordland National Park

There are two ways to explore the underwater world of Milford Sound: scuba diving or joining an underwater observatory cruise. Experience world-class diving in Milford Sound and discover its unique underwater realm, where deep-water species inhabit the shallows. Alternatively, enjoy a majestic cruise through what is often called the ‘8th Wonder of the World,’ and marvel at the stunning marine life from the comfort of the underwater observatory.


Months of operation: All months of the year

Months of operation: Jan-Apr, Oct-Dec

Photos credit to Daniel Fowler, Great South Southland Regional Development Agency and 100% Pure New Zealand
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