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Driving BACK from Milford Sound to Queenstown

7 posts
Driving BACK from Milford Sound to Queenstown

Hi, in Mid may I will be heading from Queenstown to Te Anau. I will spend two nights there, and on the last day, will go to Milford Sound. After completing the cruise, I will drive back to Queenstown. Would you recommend that I stay another night in Te Anau to break up the drive? The cruise will complete around 1PM.

9 replies to this topic
New Zealand
Destination Expert
for South Island, Nelson-Tasman Region, New Zealand, Tonga
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1. Re: Driving BACK from Milford Sound to Queenstown

in may i recommend you take a coach. the road is considered one of nzs most dangerous with ice, snow, avalanches possible.

sit back, enjoy the scenery while an experienced driver does the driving

California
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for New Zealand
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2. Re: Driving BACK from Milford Sound to Queenstown

Your post doesn't make much sense. If you have 2 nights in Te Anau, you would do the Milford Sound Cruise on your full day there and spend the 2nd night in Te Anau.

1 - drive Queenstown to Te Anau

2 - drive (or tour) to Milford Sound, cruise, return to Te Anau

3 - drive to Queenstown

7 posts
3. Re: Driving BACK from Milford Sound to Queenstown

First day when I arrive, will do glowworm caves.

Second day will do the Doubtful Sound cruise.

Then last day was thinking of doing the Milford Sound cruise and head to Queenstown.

California
Destination Expert
for New Zealand
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4. Re: Driving BACK from Milford Sound to Queenstown

If your trip is less than 5 weeks, both sounds are overkill. If really wanting to visit Doubtful Sound, the overnight trip is best because of the logistics of getting there.

I see from your other post, https://www.tripadvisor.com/ShowTopic-g255116-i729-k14703620-South_island_itinerary_help-South_Island.html#120259362 , you are traveling in May for 6 nights with an 8yo and 4yo - 2 adults. Has any of that changed?

Sydney, Australia
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for Fiji, New Zealand, Tasmania
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5. Re: Driving BACK from Milford Sound to Queenstown

Unless you can do an overnight cruise at Doubtful sound which is highly recommended on this forum I would leave Doubtful Sound day cruise out as the logistics of getting to the sound over the lake ,then a trip over the mountain in a coach to finally get to the water is not worth it as you have to that on the way back too.

Just do the Milford sound coach tour/cruise and stay the second night in Te Anau then head back in the morning of the third day to Queenstown.

7 posts
6. Re: Driving BACK from Milford Sound to Queenstown

#4 - not changed. Still the same plan.

California
Destination Expert
for New Zealand
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7. Re: Driving BACK from Milford Sound to Queenstown

What airports are you flying in and out of? What is booked? What are your interests?

With 6 nights, you really can't go too far afield from Queenstown if your flights are in and out of there. You were given a couple of itineraries flying into Christchurch and out of Queenstown on your other thread. Also one in and out of Queenstown. What did, or didn't, you like about them?

Arrowtown, New...
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8. Re: Driving BACK from Milford Sound to Queenstown

#6 - what is your full plan for the whole time you're in NZ? Have you booked flights over from Oz yet?

With 2x primary school aged children I think that Doubtful AND Milford Sound might be a challenge. As, from memory, you only have a very short trip, there could be better options for the family.

Sure, you want to pack in alot, because Canada is a long way, and you may not be back soon - but ultimately, you all have the opportunity to return and explore in the future - if that's what you really want to do.

Often - and with any travel - LESS IS MORE...

(I'd still skip NZ entirely and focus your time on Australia - come to NZ another time, when you have time)...

7 posts
9. Re: Driving BACK from Milford Sound to Queenstown

Appreciate all the great points here, making me rethink the two Sound trips.

I stuck with option 2 from my previous post i.e. staying around Queenstown to keep it simple and avoid a lot of driving. I have booked my flights to and from Queenstown and was planning to spend the nights between it and Te Anau, with a day trip to Wanaka.

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