Doubtful Sound or Milford Sound - NZ Holiday Planner

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New Zealand is known for its stunning Fiords. The most famous of which are Milford Sound and Doubtful sound. Both are located in New Zealand’s largest National Park, in the Fiordland Region of the South Island. The closest town is Te Anau.

Both Milford Sound and Doubtful Sound are spectacular, but if you can only choose one here is the low down on each.

Milford Sound

Milford Sound

Milford Sound is one of New Zealand’s most popular scenic attractions. It’s easier to get to, and a fantastic experience. On the way to Milford Sound you go through the narrow Homer tunnel and drive through the rain forests of the Fiordland National park. There’s plenty of scenic spots along the way. It’s around a 3-hour drive from Te Anau to Milford Sounds. Flying into Milford Sound is also a spectacular experience.

Doubtful Sound

Doubtful Sound is the deepest of the 14 fiords in Fiordland National Park. It’s three times longer and 10 times larger than Milford Sound. The Maori name for Doubtful Sound is Patea, which means ‘the place of silence’. It’s considered more spectacular and relaxing than Milford Sound.

It’s approximately 2.5 hours drive from Te Anau, followed by a boat ride. It’s more difficult to get to than Milford sound, but also less visited by travellers.

The verdict?. 

The thing that stops people going to Doubtful Sound is the travel. Of the two, visiting Doubtful Sounds is considered by some a better overnight trip, but if you don’t have time, then Milford Sounds is still a fantastic day-trip option.

Both Milford and Doubtful Sounds are stunning, unmissable experiences of scenic beauty. Whatever Sound you decide, it’s sure to be a highlight of your trip.

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