Tag Archives: Fiordland National Park

Circumnavigating New Zealand — Fiordland 2020; Cruising Milford Sound


Milford Sound, Fiordland Nat’l Park, New Zealand

Today we’re going to begin with Milford Sound in Fiordland National Park, then transition over to Doubtful Sound.

Milford Sound, Fiordland Nat’l Park, New Zealand

Remember the two permanent falls in Milford Sound? Let’s take looks at both from slightly different vantage points beginning with Lady Bowen Falls, followed by Stirling Falls:

Lady Bowen Falls, Milford Sound, Fiordland Nat’l Park, New Zealand

Stirling Falls, Milford Sound, Fiordland Nat’l Park, New Zealand

As I noted before, our 2020 excursion into Milford Sound gave us a vastly different weather experience than what we found awaiting us in 2019. Nevertheless, the drama made up for the coolish drizzle:

Milford Sound, Fiordland Nat’l Park, New Zealand

Milford Sound, Fiordland Nat’l Park, New Zealand

In the early afternoon we left Milford Sound behind and headed over to Doubtful Sound, which lies about 65 miles/105 kilometers to the south southwest of Milford.

Doubtful Sound, Fiordland Nat’l Park, New Zealand

You’ll see a lot more of Doubtful Sound on Wednesday, including some very playful dolphins playing in the wake of Radiance of the Seas. But for now I’ll just share with you a couple of images and some information on this fiord.

Doubtful Sound, Fiordland Nat’l Park, New Zealand

Doubtful Sound is actually much longer than Milford, but in my view not quite as photogenic. Here the mountains seem less impressive, and there were fewer waterfalls. This may have just been my impression because the weather began to turn for the worse forcing me to seek shelter in the covered aft outdoor dining area for both me and my camera. This fiord is 25 miles/40 kilometers long, and at the widest point it stretches 2 miles/3.2 kilometers from shore to shore. At 1,380 feet/421 meters, Doubtful is the deepest fiord in Fiordland National Park.

Doubtful Sound, Fiordland Nat’l Park, New Zealand

Before we get farther in to Doubtful Sound on Wednesday, I’ll leave you with this final image from Milford Sound taken earlier in the day:

Milford Sound, Fiordland Nat’l Park, New Zealand

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Fun Photo Friday — Circumnavigating New Zealand; Milford and Doubtful 1


Leaving Doubtful Sound

Next week we’ll finish up with Milford Sound and move onto Doubtful Sound and some very playful dolphins. Until then:

Shrouds of Clouds

Crashing Surf

Majestic

Pilot Arriving

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Circumnavigating New Zealand — Fiordland 2020; Cruising Milford Sound


Milford Sound, Fiordland Nat’l Park, New Zealand

Just to recap, it’s March 2020 aboard Royal Caribbean’s ship Radiance of the Seas, and we’re plying the same waters we did a year before aboard Princess Cruise Lines’ Majestic Princess. We are cruising Milford Sound inside New Zealand’s Fiordland National Park. On this day the approach to Milford Sound appeared gloomy, and the weather was obviously not going to cooperate:

Milford Sound, Fiordland Nat’l Park, New Zealand

Fortunately, those limitations in no way impacted photography until later in the day when, in Doubtful Sound, the drizzle eventually had me sitting beneath shelter in the stern. That tended to limit my photography, but as for Milford precipitation was for the most part holding off nicely.

Milford Sound, Fiordland Nat’l Park, New Zealand

Indeed, the low clouds gave a nice contrast to the previous year’s good weather photos. The peak-hugging fog added quite a bit of drama:

Milford Sound, Fiordland Nat’l Park, New Zealand

At the far end of Milford Sound is a small marina:

Milford Sound, Fiordland Nat’l Park, New Zealand

And just a short distance from that marina are the impressive Lady Bowen Falls, which is the tallest of the two permanently flowing waterfall in Milford Sound. This waterfall cascades 531 feet/162 meters from the Bowen River into the sound below. For an overview of waterfalls in this area, see: Top 6 Waterfalls to see in Milford Sound.

Lady Bowen Falls, Milford Sound, Fiordland Nat’l Park, New Zealand

Here’s a view of Milford Sound in the wake of the Radiance of the Seas:

Retreating from Lady Bowen Falls (left), Milford Sound

The other permanent waterfall within Milford Sound is Stirling Falls. While not quite as tall as Bowen, it’s actually considered the more impressive of the two falls because of the shear drop. This waterfall drops 495 feet/151 meters. If this fall looks familiar, you may recognize it from the movie X-Men Origins: Wolverine. This is the waterfall from which Hugh Jackman’s character jumps to escape a bad situation.

Stirling Falls, Milford Sound, Fiordland Nat’l Park

I’ll leave you today with these final two images from Milford Sound:

Milford Sound, Fiordland Nat’l Park, New Zealand

Milford Sound, Fiordland Nat’l Park, New Zealand

 

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