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All reviews kayaking trip overnight kayak doubtful sound sleeping mats thermal underwear dragon's den difficult situation guide tim experienced paddlers experienced guide waterproof shoes great guide safety briefing rain and wind overnight stay recommend this trip new zealand
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Reviewed 13 March 2017

We thoroughly enjoyed our tour - despite the rain, the cold and wetness.

Our preference has always been a more intimate smaller number tour which is what you get in this. We were picked up at 6:30am in the dark at our accommodation in Te Anau. We received a bit of an introduction to the area as we drove through the amazing fiordland national park towards Milford Sound. Just the drive itself was phenomenal

When we got to the beach, we were given many layers of clothes (thermal, wetsuit, additional thermal, etc etc) to keep us warm and dry out in the sound. Given it was such a wet / cold / windy day, these layers saved our lives / sanity.

We were then given some basic instructions and set out on our adventure. Our guide was Bailey and she was amazing! We adapted our schedule based on the weather and got very close to the waterfalls and cliffs. We also got to go to the secret 'dragon's den'. Unfortunately, as mentioned, the weather was not the greatest so we did not paddle out very far. It was beautiful nonetheless. We then stopped at a secluded beach for lunch. It was probably my least favourite part as there were a lot of sandflies and they bite! Following the tour, some of the other groups told us that they just had lunch in the kayaks which was not too bad.

On our way back we also got to stop at some lookouts and took some breathtaking photos.

If you do not mind getting a bit wet, this tour is highly recommended whether rain or shine.

Date of experience: March 2017
Thank Lorah Z
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
GoOrangeNZ, Guest Relations Manager at Go Orange Kayaks, responded to this reviewResponded 11 August 2017

Thanks for your brilliant review Lorah. We offer small groups of 8 on the trip to make it as personal as possible. The drive itself from Te Anau to Milford offers breath taking scenery from start to finish. We understand the importance of having the right gear for this style trip and it really pays off! Our guides are always enthusiastic throughout the trip, making it an exciting experience getting up close and personal with the waterfalls. The sandflies are one of natures trademarks we can't avoid in the south island, however the picnic lunch is a great way to set you up for the day. The photos enable you to share the beautiful memories, we're happy to hear you recommend the tour :)

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Reviewed 10 March 2017 via mobile

I did the day out in doubtful sound for $255. 3 hrs of paddling doesn't get you far especially when the guides keep stopping to talk. When you pay nearly $300 I just want to kayak and see as much as possible. The piece of advice they don't give is wear waterproof shoes or sandal. Spent the whole time with cold wet feet. Also the sand flies are no joke! Never seen anything like it wear protection. Besides the guides seeming a little jaded be prepared to carry the gear as well off and on the bus/boat. Again for the amount they charge did not expect it. Overall the weather was perfect but it was not a wow moment. The best part was seeing a kea while waiting for the bus. I guess don't it if you have the money but don't feel bad if you missed it.

Date of experience: March 2017
Thank Lalatravelgirl1979
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
GoOrangeNZ, Guest Relations Manager at Go Orange Kayaks, responded to this reviewResponded 3 December 2017

Thank you for your feedback. We do travel as far out to the fiord as possible in the duration of the trip.
We advertise it as a taster of Doubtful Sound with 3 hours of actual paddling out on the fiord exploring Deep Cove, Rolla Island and over to Olphert Cove and return so that customers know this is what to expect from the day.
I would advise customers that want to see a wider scope of the fiord to take the Doubtful Sound cruise, or if you're really keen on the kayaking option to opt for the Doubtful overnighter. We're happy to hear the weather was beautiful for you, however it's a shame this trip in the spectacular fiord didn't live up to your expectations.

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Reviewed 6 March 2017

Definitely glad to have gotten a glimpse of Doubtful, dramatically more appealing than Milford... All in all though, Oli, our guide, did an exceedingly swell job. Lot's of knowledge and history about the area, nature, wildlife etc. Riddles and jokes to keep the community together, and a mean cup of hot chocolate. Not a bad paddler either! Cheers Oli!

Date of experience: February 2017
1  Thank DavidS11562
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
GoOrangeNZ, Guest Relations Manager at Go Orange Kayaks, responded to this reviewResponded 7 August 2017

Thanks for the brilliant review David! Doubtful is completely unique in its own way and has a diverse offering to Milford Sound. Our guide Oli has a genuine passion for the sound making it easy to offer a genuine service to customers. He has a wealth knowledge and a great sense of humour making it a much more personal experience :)

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Reviewed 5 March 2017 via mobile

We loved the Milford Magic kayak and cruise tour we did with Blake. Very professional and well organised. Liked small numbers of max 8 per group. Kayaking was a good mix of kayaking and sight seeing, not to strenuous. Packed lunch was yum then got fish and chips on cruise as well. Everyone super friendly and great staff on cruise who had heaps of knowledge. Would definitely recommend.

Date of experience: March 2017
Thank 647izzyc
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
GoOrangeNZ, Guest Relations Manager at Go Orange Kayaks, responded to this reviewResponded 7 August 2017

Thanks for the great review Izzy. The Milford magic gives you the best of both worlds when exploring the sound. We aim to keep it personal with 8 kayaks per guide and pride it on being a relaxed and laid back style of kayaking. The packed lunch really sets you up for the paddling and the famous free fish and chips can't go a miss! The team that you spend the day with and our friendly staff really make a difference for your trip, we're happy to hear you had a fantastic experience :)

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Reviewed 4 March 2017 via mobile

Had a really crappy tour of Doubtful Sound Day Out with Go Orange. The weather was raining and windy. We didn't mind, as we were well dressed. We went out with Scott with Go Orange and after the third bend he decided that we were not going any further because it was too windy. This was after 30 minutes of paddling of a 3 hour tour. We just huddled and listened to the guide chat for the next hour and a half and didn't get to really go paddling the sound. Go Orange should have cancelled this trip or else offered a power cruise of the Sound or a refund. For the money that we paid, $250 per person, disappointed that we were held up from paddling because of some inexperienced paddlers in our group and the guides decision not to proceed up the sound. What did we pay for? Go Orange should have offered a refund as this was the worse experience we've ever had in NZ. They knew within 30 minutes that they could not offer a 3 hour tour and instead we just paddled around the cove and did nothing for 2 hours. Very very disappointing.

Date of experience: March 2017
2  Thank Mitch L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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