Southland
Day Trips

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Our most recommended Southland Day Trips

  • From Queenstown: Milford Sound Full-Day Trip by Bus & Boat

    1. From Queenstown: Milford Sound Full-Day Trip by Bus & Boat

    Take the hassle out of driving to Milford Sound and join a guided coach tour from Queenstown. Sit back, relax and enjoy magnificent scenery and informative commentary. Your experienced local coach driver will show you the best views along the Milford Road and connect you seamlessly with a 2-hour nature cruise. Travel in a spacious coach with USB charging ports. Marvel at the native rainforest, spectacular waterfalls and glacial lakes. Pause briefly in Te Anau before continuing along the spectacular alpine Milford Road. Admire incredible views at Eglinton Valley, Mirror Lakes, Knobbs Flat or Monkey Creek and pose for photos. Be wowed by the glaciar-carved Milford Sound as you approach the visitor terminal. Seize your cruise and lunch passes from the driver who’ll help you find your cruise departure gate.  Climb aboard a purpose-built catamaran for a nature cruise along the fiord’s de...

    We had a wonderful time in the Milford Sound bus tour and cruise with Southern Discoveries. Even though it was raining, our guide and driver, Brad, made sure we stopped for photos along the drive and kept us entertained with useful and interesting knowledge about the area. Due to high winds,however, we had to turn back from going on the cruise around the Milford Sound. Our guide was sincerely apologetic about the cancellation and I reckon he felt worse than we did! So we re-booked to go on the tour again the next day (complimentary passes) to a lovely clear day and were thoroughly mesmerized by the scenery of the road trip to the Sound and the Sound itself! It was 2 tours for the price of 1! We truly live in God's country and many thanks to Brad for sharing his inexhaustible knowledge and genuine love of the South Island with us. His recommendations on eateries and places to visit was also spot on. We will certainly be back! Thank you very much for making our trip so memorable!

  • From Te Anau: 1-Day Milford Sound Coach & Cruise

    2. From Te Anau: 1-Day Milford Sound Coach & Cruise

    If Milford Sound is the 8th wonder of the world, the road to Milford is surely the 9th. The overland journey is a spectacular showcase of sheer mountains and towering cliffs, rugged valleys and the native rain forest surrounded by spectacular waterfalls and glacial lakes. Be taken to Milford Sound while you sit back, relax and enjoy the magnificent scenery and informative commentary. Your experienced, local coach driver will show you the best short walks and photo stops on the Milford Road, and will connect you seamlessly with the Milford Sound Nature Cruise. Milford Sound is approximately a 5-hour drive or 45 minute flight from Queenstown. The Milford Coach & Cruise trips depart daily from Queenstown and Te Anau with return scenic flights available (weather permitting) – meaning you’ll see even more.

    Best Milford Sound experience you could book! Southern Discoveries are a great company for this tour! Thanks again to our driver who was spectacular!

  • Te Anau: Glowworm Caves Guided Tour

    3. Te Anau: Glowworm Caves Guided Tour

    Experience a mysterious underground world of rushing water before drifting in darkness beneath the luminous shimmer of hundreds of glowworms.  Your trip to the Te Anau Glowworm Caves begins with a cruise to the western shores of Lake Te Anau. At the entry to the caves, view the informative displays and learn about this geological wonder before you head underground. On the tour of the caves, your friendly guide will point out the highlights and share their knowledge of the caves and its history. This underground world is astonishingly beautiful. The cave are 12,000 years old which by geological standards is still very young and they are still being carved out by the force of the river that flows through them. The result is a twisting network of limestone passages filled with sculpted rock, whirlpools and a roaring underground waterfall. Deep inside the caves, beyond the roar of the wat...

    Fantastic adventure, beautiful trip across the lake followed by incredible caves and native forest. Helpful and informative guides made the trip that much more engaging.

  • From Te Anau: Premium Milford Sound Small Group Tour

    4. From Te Anau: Premium Milford Sound Small Group Tour

    Get away from the overcrowded buses, long lines, and obstructed views, and enjoy pure premium travel as you embark on a fabulous small-group tour to discover New Zealand's renowned Milford Sound. Combining premium travel in a Mercedes with an amazing scenic nature cruise, a picnic lunch (optional), and loads of off-the-beaten-track visits to stunning locations, this really is the best way to discover Milford Sound. Travel to Milford in style in a luxury Mercedes van fully equipped with Wi-Fi, bottled water, and large viewing windows for taking in the amazing sights. Enjoy plenty of stops along the way. Upon arrival to Milford, take a scenic 2-hour nature cruise along the fjord, where you can lap up the spectacular sights and go under waterfalls. Allow your local guide to provide you with informative commentary while you absorb the lush surrounding scenery and spectacular views. Along t...

    The activity was very professionally run. The tour guide was knowledgeable and friendly. The Milford Sounds themselves were stunning. I would highly recommend this experience!

  • Milford Sound Nature Cruise on Premium Glass-Roof Catamaran

    5. Milford Sound Nature Cruise on Premium Glass-Roof Catamaran

    Climb aboard 'Gem of the Sound', the newest vessel to cruise in the fiord, for a Milford Sound nature cruise. Capture the best views of the incredible fiord with three-levels of indoor and outdoor seating, unique glass roofs, and large viewing decks. Your friendly crew will welcome you on board and embrace you as one of the family, whilst you marvel at one of the most stunning places on earth. Relax in the comfortable booth seating with stylish decor and ambient lighting. High-definition cameras project outdoor footage live onto TV screens throughout the vessel - so no matter where are, you won't miss a thing. Admire New Zealand fur seals basking on rocks and feel the spray of cascading waterfalls. Look out for playful dolphins and, if you’re lucky, catch a glimpse of the rare and elusive Fiordland Crested Penguin. Travel the length of the fiord and out into the Tasman Sea, to see why ...

    Great boat trip with friendly informative staff on board. The boat has plenty of space and viewing decks were excellent.?

  • From Queenstown: Milford Sound Full-Day Trip by Plane & Boat

    6. From Queenstown: Milford Sound Full-Day Trip by Plane & Boat

    Combine a flight and a cruise on Milford Sound on this excursion from Queensland. Take in the area's outstanding natural beauty as you savour the sights from both air and water.

    Enjoy pickup and transfer to the air hanger in Queenstown. Listen to informative commentary in English and marvel at the stunning views of lakes, mountains, and waterfalls on the 40-minute flight. Upon landing, transfer to the Milford Sound Boat Terminal. Board in Milford Sound and experience 2 hours onboard an intimate vessel with English commentary by your skipper, and complimentary tea and coffee. Cruise to the mouth of the Tasman Sea, while enjoying views of waterfalls and marine life like fur seals, dolphins, and penguins. Next, board your scenic flight back to Queenstown. Take a different flight path from your outbound flight as you admire the spectacular views of Fiordland National Park....

    Sam our hotel pick up driver arrived at our hotel on time and was polite and engaged throughout our driver. I also believe Sam was also the employee I spoke to the previous day as our original booking was cancelled due to weather. Sam managed to ensure all three of us were able to experience Milford Sound together the very next day Dean our flight pilot was fantastic! He acted as a tour guide and pilot all in one giving us information as we flew above. Dean always had a smile on his face and tried to keep the flight seating fair

  • Queenstown: Milford Sound Coach & Cruise Full-Day Trip

    7. Queenstown: Milford Sound Coach & Cruise Full-Day Trip

    Enjoy a fun and leisurely day trip to admire the glacial features, wild flora and fauna, and picturesque backdrops of the world-famous fiord at Milford Sound.

    Start with a bus journey as you sit back, draw the curtains, and nap en route to Te Anau. Your driver will share their local knowledge as you stop along the way to see spectacular scenery. Marvel at views of waterfalls, wildlife, and the rainforest. Soak up the sights from any of the three indoor and outdoor viewing decks during your cruise and join your jovial crew at the bow as you nose under Stirling Falls for a free shower in some of the world's freshest water.  Complimentary tea service is available for the entire cruise and espresso coffee, snacks cakes, and a selection of drinks can be purchased from "Off The Rocks" onboard bar.

    A wonderful experience seeing Kiwi hospitality at its best and the most beautiful South Island scenery. great value for money. Enjoyed every minute. thanks.

  • Fiordland: Jet Boat & Nature Walk Experience from Te Anau

    8. Fiordland: Jet Boat & Nature Walk Experience from Te Anau

    Begin your adventure in the heart of Te Anau, a short walk from most accommodation. After check-in, rest at a picnic table to enjoy free WiFi and a charging station to make sure all your devices are good to go. Hop on the bus for a short ride through local farmland to the Queen's Reach boat launch on the Waiau River.  Gear up with spray jackets and life vests before an exhilarating ride down the Waiau River. Lined by ancient beech tree forest this river is featured in The Lord of the Rings as the Anduin River. Contrast high-speed spins with pauses along the river in some amazingly tranquil places. Spot some trout in the crystal-clear water and have time to take plenty of photos. Learn about the area's unique environment and fascinating history from your knowledgeable local guide. Emerge onto the breath-taking Lake Manapouri, surrounded by glacier-carved mountains. Experience a sense of...

    Great fun, Lex our Skipper was very knowledgable and made it a fun trip whilst feeling completely safe.

  • Milford Sound Coach, Cruise, and Walk from Te Anau

    9. Milford Sound Coach, Cruise, and Walk from Te Anau

    Enjoy a leisurely small-group day excursion to Milford Sound from Te Anau, with an extended nature cruise along the full length of the fiord. Your tour includes all the best scenic stops, including short walks. In the summer (1 November - 30 April) you can also select a 2.5 hour self-guided hike to key summit on the renowned Routeburn Track. From Te Anau, travel along the spectacular Milford Road with local, experienced nature guides who are eager to share their stories, knowledge, and passion for the area. Upon reaching Milford Sound, you will join a nature cruise traveling out to the Tasman Sea. The cruise provides excellent viewing opportunities and plenty of time is available to view waterfalls, rainforest, mountains, and wildlife. On completion of the cruise, passengers will board a small coach and begin their journey overland. If you prefer shorter walks, stay with the nature gu...

    Great trip, little stops along the way, boat tour was great, guide was welcoming and informative, recommend this tour!

  • Milford Sound: Boutique Small-Boat Cruise

    10. Milford Sound: Boutique Small-Boat Cruise

    Your cruise will begin at one of the most scenic points of the journey. You can take in the magnificent view of Mitre Peak (New Zealand's most photographed mountain) and the Sinbad Gully. This place is home to the Kakapo (world's heaviest flightless parrot), which was once thought to be extinct but was rediscovered in 1948. From there you will cruise past seal colonies and feel the spray of the waterfall as you travel directly under the Fairy Falls. Once the cruise reaches the Tasman Sea, you will get to see the hidden entrance to the Milford Sound (which Captain Cook missed twice on his explorations). On your return journey, you will find yourself underneath an even bigger waterfall, the Sterling Falls. If you feel like a world-famous "glacial facial", don't miss the opportunity here to do so. Throughout your tour, nature guides will entertain you with local anecdotes, as well as offe...

    Really great time. Staff were very informative and easy to talk to. Was wonderful being on a smaller boat. We had a fantastic time and will definitely go again!!

Other Sightseeing Options in Southland

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What people are saying about Southland

Overall rating

4.7 / 5

based on 458 reviews

We had a wonderful time in the Milford Sound bus tour and cruise with Southern Discoveries. Even though it was raining, our guide and driver, Brad, made sure we stopped for photos along the drive and kept us entertained with useful and interesting knowledge about the area. Due to high winds,however, we had to turn back from going on the cruise around the Milford Sound. Our guide was sincerely apologetic about the cancellation and I reckon he felt worse than we did! So we re-booked to go on the tour again the next day (complimentary passes) to a lovely clear day and were thoroughly mesmerized by the scenery of the road trip to the Sound and the Sound itself! It was 2 tours for the price of 1! We truly live in God's country and many thanks to Brad for sharing his inexhaustible knowledge and genuine love of the South Island with us. His recommendations on eateries and places to visit was also spot on. We will certainly be back! Thank you very much for making our trip so memorable!

The activity was very professionally run. The tour guide was knowledgeable and friendly. The Milford Sounds themselves were stunning. I would highly recommend this experience!

A wonderful experience seeing Kiwi hospitality at its best and the most beautiful South Island scenery. great value for money. Enjoyed every minute. thanks.

A wonderful experience seeing Kiwi hospitality at its best and the most beautiful South Island scenery. great value for money. Enjoyed every minute. thanks.

Very well organised. Excellent and informative driver, Gabe.