Blogs from Milford Sound, Fiordland National Park, South Island, New Zealand, Oceania - page 3

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More goodbyes today and then it's off for some sea kayaking on Milford Sound. There are seven of us plus our guide, Luke. We're in double kayaks and I'm paired with the guide. After gearing up, we jump on a small boat (the Sea Ka) that also carries the kayaks and head out into the Sound. After dropping the kayaks we jump in (on the water entry) and start paddling. First stop is a little farther out into the Sound to visit some NZ fur seals. It's a small group of adolescent males sleeping on an outcrop of rocks. They smell really bad, but getting up close is pretty fantastic. The scenery is pretty good, too. The cliffs rise up over 500 metres into a clear sky. The only waves are from the cruise boats that ... read more
Sea Kayaking - Milford Sound
Sea Kayaking - Milford Soiund
Sea Kayaking - Milford Sound


Took a coach tour down to Milford Sound rather than driving as we heard the road was quite challenging. In fact it was only tricky right at the end but it was nice for Herve to have a day of sitting back and relaxing. It also saved us some time which we made good use of later. Milford Sound is the smaller of the two fjords in the south of the the South Island. It is breathtakingly awesome to float around on our cruise ship. Athough we were there in mid summer it felt uncrowded. ... read more
Along the Milford Sound Road
Our glass-roofed luxury coach
On route to Miford Sound


It's the last day on the track. Mixed feelings about it - good that it's coming to a close (shower, clean clothes, and a real bed will be nice), and a little sad, too (the moutains, the river, the quiet, and the friends). The forecast calls for possible showers, but hopefully I can beat the rain. It's 18km from the hut to Sandfly Point and the ferry to Milford Sound, but it's all gently downhill. Again, the scenery is stunning. Mountains, waterfalls, and the river which changes from churning torrent to broad and lazy. In the end, there's Sandfly Point. About eight of us finish the last kilometre together. The view from the pier is amazing and the breeze keeps the sandflies at bay. Over the next few minutes the last of our group arrives, just ... read more
Milford Track
Milford Track
Milford Track


It's day three and it looks like the weather is going to be fine. According tot he trail guide, this is the hardest day - it's only 14km, but it's supposed to take between 6-7 hours. Peter, Gethin, and I are the early risers, hitting the trail by 6:30. It's grey this early, in part because of the hour and in part because of a mist that gets thicker as we climb. And climb. The first two hours of the day are spent on a series of switchbacks (according to the hut ranger, on average it's a 10% grade) that rise 400 metres to the Mackinnon Pass. The mist killed any views back down the valley, but made the ascent a little cooler. I waited at the top of the pass for about an hour, hoping ... read more
Milford Track
Milford Track
Milford Track


Day two of the track is 16.5km. Fortunately, the weather is once again fine (some of the flood plains I would have had to cross had rocks the size of grapefruit - that would have made crossing it really "fun"). The trail gradually rose up until near the end for a forty minute killer climb to the Mintaro Hut. Grab a bunk. Get in my swimsuit. Beeline to Lake Mintaro. O-M-G! The Lake sits in a bowl surrounded by the Mackinnon Pass and mountains. Absolutely stunning. I admired the view, then waded into the cold water and dunked myself - several times. It felt so good after the long day on the trail (the ranger told us the temperature hit 31). Oh. I should mention another small thing about the track. Sandflies. If you stop for ... read more
Milford Track - Day 2
Milford Track - Day 2
Milford Track - Day 2


The Milford Track; called by some the finest walk in the world. It stretches 53.5km through Fiordland National Park. The Fiordland area averages 200 days a year of rain and in January the track sees an average of fifteen days of rain. I can expect to see at least one day of rain, and the rain can flood out parts of the track, forcing you to wade through water up to your waist. Wish me luck. In Te Anau I boarded a bus for Te Anau Downs and a ferry that would take me across the northern length of Lake Te Anau and drop me at Glade Warf, the true start of the track. The first day's hike is light, at only 5km over fairly even terrain. The trail followed the course of the Clinton River ... read more
Milford Track - Day One
Milford Track - Day One
Milford Track - Day One


Christchurch to Milford Sound : Bruce and I have been trying to keep up with our travel blog but sometimes it is difficult finding the internet . I hope you haven’d missed us too much. What did we do before the internet? How the heck did we survive? Sometimes we stop at libraries but they charge a fee there as well to use the computer. Anyway, the saga continues.... We stayed three nights in the city of Christchurch. Christchurch is the most “english” of New Zealand cities. There is the avon river, cathedrals, a tram, a city square with english style pubs and houses with manicured gardens. We went to the art museum and visited the “Ron Mueck” exhibit. What an exhibit it was. There were about 11 sculptures made of fiberglass, rubber, all different materials ... read more
Christchurch
Christchurch
using the internet


What a day! What an amazing day. It began, a bit too early, in Queenstown at 5 a.m.. I had to catch the tour bus at 7:20 a.m. at a spot four blocks away. Everyone assured me that it was no more than a five-minute walk, but I knew that it would take me much longer than most people, even without my heavy-as-lead luggage. So I planned to leave at 6:30, and, in the event, I left about 6:20; I'd finished my packing and I was too anxious to wait. Since I was leaving before reception opened, I couldn't ask for the promised help in bringing my luggage down six flights of stairs. Fortunately, "down" is much easier to manage than "up." I put my duffel at the top of each flight and gave it ... read more
Native forest
Homer Tunnel
Waterfall


The magnificiently wet Milford Sound. A truly amazing place... We stayed the night in Milford Sound with our van swaying with the wind and a lightening storm above us (agh!)...the next morning thankfully the storm had passed and we boarded our 2hr cruise on the sound, a fantastic experience. Le superbe Milford Sound, un endroit etonnant....Nous sommes reste une nuit sur Milford Sound avec notre van qui tremblait de par le vent et un violent orage etait juste au dessus de nous (agh!!!). le matin suivant, la tempete etait heureusement passee et nous avons fait une croisiere de 2 heures sur le Sound, une superbe experience...... read more
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15.-20.4.2010 QUEENSTOWN & MILFORD SOUND Parasta Uudessa Seelannissa on maisema ja luonto. Vaellusreitit ja -mökit ovat hyvässä kunnossa, kaikki on organisoitu aivan viimeisen päälle. Jokaisessa kaupungissa ja kyläpahasessa on DOC -Information Centre ja / tai iSITE, joista saa paikkakunnan vaellusreittikartat. Sekä kilokaupalla esitteitä koskenlaskusta, melonnasta, benji-hyppyistä jne. Jopa neljänkymmenen asukkaan Makarorassa oli iSITE. Uudesta Seelannista paistaa kirkkaasti, että turismi todellakin on maatalouden jälkeen suurin elinkeino. Varjopuoli on, että jokainen isompi kaupunki on turistirysä samalla tavalla kuin etelän lomakohteissa ennen muinoin. Koko keskusta on rakennettu toivottamaan turistit tervetulleiksi. Se tekee Uuden Seelannin suuremmista kaupungeista toistensa kaltaisia. Sen takia tykkään paljon enemmän pienistä paikkakunnista, jotka ovat tiete... read more
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West&Queens 124
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