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Sound (Piopiotahi in Māori) (Pop: 80) is a fjord carved by
glacial action in the south west of New Zealand's
South Island, within Fiordland National
Park and the Te Wahipounamu World Heritage site. It has been judged the
world's top travel destination in an international survey and is acclaimed
as New Zealand's most famous tourist destination.
The drive to Milford Sound
itself passes through unspoiled mountain landscapes before entering the
1.2 km Homer Tunnel which emerges into rain-forest-carpeted canyons that
descend to the sound. The winding mountain road, while of high standards, is
very prone to avalanches and closures during the winter half of the year.
An underwater tourist observatory found in one of the bays of the sound provides viewing of black coral, usually only found in much deeper waters. A dark surface layer of fresh water, stained by tannins from the surrounding forest, allows the corals to grow close to the surface here
Like the rest of Fiordland, Milford Sound receives a lot of rain. Indeed, some tour operators argue that the sound is best seen on a rainy day as all the waterfalls can be seen in their full glory. Many recommend seeing it during a sunny day and in the rain to see both worlds as they are both very different and amazing.
When visiting Milford Sound and its natural beauty, do not forget insect repellent due to sand flies in the late afternoon early evening and a raincoat as weather can change without notice
There are daily schedule
coach and bus services to Milford Sound from Queenstown, Te Anau, Te Anau Downs
and The Divide (The end of the Routeburn Track). Also scenic flights by
light aircraft and helicopter tours to and from Milford Sound Airport to Te
Anau and Queenstown..
There are no passenger train services from Milford Sound to Queenstown, Te Anau, Invercargill, Dunedin, Mt Cook or Christchurch.