We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The Tripadvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.
Open today: 6:00 AM - 8:00 PM
Review Highlights
Getting up close and personal in Doubtful Sound

Absolutely amazing experience, kayaking in the gorgeous Doubtful Sound. Our wonderful tour guide... read more

Reviewed 18 January 2021
Auckland, New Zealand
Incredible experience with a great guide

We were extremely lucky to have amazing calm, cloudy weather on our trip into doubtful sound... read more

Reviewed 7 January 2021
Christchurch, New Zealand
Read all 211 reviews
Recommended experiences in and around Te Anau
from US$145.77
More Info
from US$72.52
More Info
from US$72.52
More Info
Reviews (211)
Filter reviews
211 results
Traveller rating
Traveller type
Time of year
LanguageAll languages
More languages
Traveller rating
See what travellers are saying:
Selected filters
Updating list...
73 - 78 of 211 reviews
Reviewed 13 April 2018 via mobile

This was a two part trip, kayaking with a group of six and one instructor in the morning and taking a boat cruise including a small lunch with a hundred of so in the afternoon.

Be aware that there are 200 days of rain in Milford Sound per year, so ideally plan your day around the weather. We understand it may not be possible depending on traveling schedules, but if you're able we'd definitely recommend trying to wait to visit until a clear day - the views were unbelievable. We chose Go Orange over other companies as they had the best price. We were also lucky having hired a car through GORentals to benefit from an extra discount with their Play discount cards.

We have kayaked once before and although you don't need much experience you do need stamina as it's quite tiring against the strong winds. The guide allowed a few breaks where he'd talk us through the history of the Sound which was interesting - sometimes he wasn't quite sure on the facts but did a good job of making it seem like he did!

There was a small incident when we almost got knocked out of the kayak by a renegade buoy which came hurtling towards us and collided with our kayak but fortunately we withstood the crash and stayed firmly upright - it would have been a cold experience otherwise! But the company is not to blame for this and we were advised it was a one off, relieved to see it being captured by some fishermen a little while later - it all added to the experience really.

The cruise in the afternoon was well set up, and the captain aboard had some great knowledgeable and amusing commentary! We were also treated to a half an hour spectacle of wild dolphins which was the icing on the cake.

The only downside to the trip would be there was a lot of air noise from helicopters and planes above - but it you block that out whilst finding a blu sky day you'll be telling people about the experience for months!

Date of experience: February 2018
Thank totravelandinspire
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 12 April 2018

The only thing I booked in advance in my three weeks on the South Island was an overnight kayaking trip in Doubtful Sound with Go Orange. Getting there requires a boat ride across Lake Manapouri, followed by a bus out to the fiord. It typically rains out there and you kayak anyway. Apparently they'll only cancel for really bad winds or other conditions that create a real hazard. We were four double kayaks led by our guide, Mop. Day one we made our way out, got dressed and hit the water, paddling out to the Hall Arm where the campsiite is located. We stopped for lunch then got bak on the water and continued to explore Hall Arm in the occasional rain and mist, occasionally “rafting up” to chat or just take in the scenery.

The rain creates scenery that’s very different from the postcard views you sometimes see. Every gully in the surrounding mountains turned into a cascading waterfall. Really fantastic and worth experiencing, but definitely an adventure for those willing to put up with some adversity!

The campsite is fairly basic. There's a pit-type toilet, a shared eating/socializing tent made of mosquito netting and space for the tents. As with anywhere in Fiordland, you will be quickly devoured by sandflies if you don't cover yourself pretty well with DEET-based repellant. I would also recommend a pair of paddling gloves (they don't provide any), as the repellant washes off your hands in salt water and they'll come right at you as soon as you are close to shore. It's the one downside to this place but I guess it's OK because otherwise it would be overrun by tiki-tourists.

They provide fairly-large double tents. I had one to myself as I was the only unattached guy in the group which was mostly female.

The rain creates scenery that’s very different from the postcard views you sometimes see. Every gully in the surrounding mountains turned into a cascading waterfall.

Date of experience: December 2017
Thank Michael G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 7 April 2018

I arranged this trip with my husband and in-laws. We planned to have 4-5 hours kayaking on the water in Milford.

The staff from Go Orange picked us up from Te Anau and were friendly and chatty on the journey to the Sound.

Unfortunately, the weather had other plans when we got to Milford; wind with gusts up to 140 knots meant kayaking was out of the question. We were lucky enough to swap to a cruise which showed Milford Sound in all its glory- wild and windy, and even managed to spot some dolphins enjoying the weather!

All cruises were cancelled that date due to weather and our trip was cut short as we headed back home afterwards.

However, the Go Orange crew were so enthusiastic and took us on a tour of their favourite viewing spots and photo places on the Milford road home. What could have bene a disastrous day due to weather became a fun (albeit different) day out, and I cannot commend the staff and their attitudes enough.

They arranged refunds automatically, and whilst I am sad we didn't get to kayak Milford Sound, I feel we had a fabulous day out and cannot thank the crew enough- especially Harry, Joel, Robbie and Finn who took such good care of us!

Date of experience: March 2018
Thank mishacam07
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 21 March 2018

My wife and I ( late 50's experienced paddlers) did the 3 day trip in Doubtful Sound with Bailey as our guide.
The scenery is spectacular, no other way to describe it. A multi-day kayak trip is really the only way to experience this wilderness and it was certainly the highlight of our 6 week trip to New Zealand.
Go Orange is an experienced highly professional operator, we were pleased with the equipment and the thoroughness of the pre-trip briefing.
Our guide Bailey made us feel completely safe during the trip- we had a challenging second day with high winds and rain - she tailored the paddling to the conditions so that we were never in a difficult situation. Kudos to her!!
This is not a "glamping" trip (although the composting toilet was welcome). You will experience all that the sound has to offer including sandflies and rain, but the payoff is one of the best wilderness experiences we have ever had.
I highly recommend the trip to anyone who wants to go the extra mile.

Date of experience: March 2018
1  Thank tpayne1959
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 19 March 2018 via mobile

My girlfriend Amanda and I had an amazing day kayaking on the Milford Sound. The views and weather were incredible, as well as the animals and waterfalls we saw. Our guide Isla (hope I’m spelling that right) was kind, and kept things at a comfortable pace. Well worth the price and the drive from Te Anau.

5 stars!

Aaaaaand... even more amazing was the drive there, where we got picked up before dawn and learned about a bunch of cool conspiracy theories as well as some key recommendations on New Zealand movies.

6 stars!

Aaaaand... just as great, on the way back we learned about naked tunnel runs, great places to eat and drink around Te Anau, and about how Avengers Infinity War is going to tie the whole Marvel universe all together within one movie. Incredible!

7 stars!

Then we got to drive through heaps of sheep on the way back! They were all over the road and surrounding our van. “Heaps” - they say this a lot in New Zealand.

10 stars!!!

Thanks again for a great day you guys.

Thank Mark R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
View more reviews