When planning a cruise holiday, it’s easy to just focus on traditional ocean options in the top cruise areas like the Caribbean. However, if you stick to this way of thinking, you will miss out on a vast number of incredible experiences. One of the best inland cruises in the world is the exploration of Milford Sound in New Zealand.
Taking a trip along Milford Sound may not be an exclusive cruise holiday, but it is a sightseeing tour that many would say is unmissable. The country has a lot more to offer as well, meaning that you can enjoy a satisfyingly well-rounded holiday.
The Beauty of Milford Sound
New Zealand is one of the most famous countries in the world when it comes to natural beauty. Its stunning landscape is varied, and it has acted as the perfect setting for several high-budget Hollywood pictures. Most famously, Peter Jackson’s Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit trilogies were filmed in New Zealand and did a lot to boost the tourism industry in the country. Indeed, the country experienced a 40 percent increase in visitors between 2000 and 2006 thanks to what became known as the “Lord of the Rings phenomenon.”
Milford Sound was one of the most iconic settings from Jackson’s pictures, and it was used to represent the Anduin River south of Rivendell. Rudyard Kipling famously referred to the spot as the 8th Wonder of the World, highlighting how those who witness this incredible spot are in awe of its natural beauty.
If you haven’t heard of Milford Sound before or seen pictures of it, it’s a deep fjord that stretches over 16 kilometers from the Tasman Sea. It’s surrounded by a sprawling mountainous landscape, with some peaks reaching up to 1200 meters above sea level. Along with the incredible sights on offer, cruisers in the areas can take in a wide variety of wildlife. Some of the animals in the region include dolphins, seals, penguins, and a plethora of different birds.
Various cruise companies operate on Milford Sound with a range of different boat types available for visitors to choose from. Each of them takes in the same sights and sounds, though, and ensures that tourists can see all the towering waterfalls and beautiful forest surroundings. The woodland areas are astounding, and you may even get a chance to spot some endangered bird species like the kakapo.
What Makes New Zealand Such a Great Holiday Destination?
One of the key reasons that people visit New Zealand is for the wondrous settings like Milford Sound. However, various other aspects of the country make it an ideal spot for a holiday. If you’re considering a cruise down Milford Sound, you may want to brainstorm some of the other activities you’ll take part in during the trip.
Aside from being an excellent place to take in breathtaking scenery, New Zealand also has bustling cities with plenty of nightlife options. Auckland and Christchurch are two of the most energetic cities in the country, and these both boast a varied array of entertainment experiences. For example, you can easily find live music and comedy shows, and there are often festivals that celebrate these arts.
There are also numerous casinos dotted around, with some spectacular sprawling entertainment zones like SkyCity Auckland. It’s open 24/7, meaning that you can enjoy table games and slots at any time. Indeed, in New Zealand, you don’t even need to set foot in a casino to partake in these games. The online casino sector in the country is booming too, with various bonus casino sites offering great promotions to attract players. For example, Wildz Casino has a $1000 deposit match offer plus free spins, while BetVictor is offering a $1500 deposit match with 150 free spins.
What do You Need to Know Before Booking a Milford Sound Cruise?
If you’re someone who enjoys river cruises, Milford Sound should be high on your list of future travel locations. Few places in the world can offer such jaw-dropping scenery. The fjord is one of the most popular locations in the country, and it attracts almost one million people every year. That makes it a busy spot, with more than 2740 visitors every day. Therefore, it makes sense to plan your visit carefully to make sure you aren’t disappointed.
When choosing a tour company to explore the fjord with, you may want to consider what your cruise essentials are. Some people enjoy a simple boat, while others need amenities such as onboard cafes. Countless companies are running daily cruises, so it’s helpful to conduct some online research in advance to ensure you book with the provider that’s best for your needs. The cruise itself usually takes around two hours, but there are plenty of other things that you can do in the area.
For example, there are also scenic flights that provide an aerial view of the surroundings. It can be interesting to see things from boat level and then take them in from the sky as well. There are also many hiking routes around Milford Sound. The Milford Track is one of the best-known walks in the country. It’s 53.5 kilometers long and takes approximately four days to complete.
If you’ve never been on a cruise on Milford Sound, it should be on your bucket list. New Zealand is an amazing holiday destination, and you’ll find plenty of things to do there after you’ve been on the cruise.