Enjoy many activities along the Milford Road and in beautiful Milford Sound/Piopiotahi, including walking and tramping, boating, climbing, fishing, guided activities, hunting, kayaking and more.
Tracks and walks – Milford Road/Milford Sound including the Milford and Routeburn Tracks (Great Walks), and many attractive short and day walks accessible from the Milford Road.
Bird & wildlife watching
Walking in beech forest at many of the short walks in the Eglinton Valley (e.g. Lake Gunn Nature Walk), you might commonlfy see small bush birds like tomtits, grey warblers, fantails, riflemen, NZ robins, chaffinches and brown creepers. If you are keen you may spot rarer birds like the endangered mohua/yellowhead or native parakeet/kakariki. Whio/ Blue Duck are also being successfully managed in the area and numbers have grown to the point where they are regularly seen at Monkey Creek and the lower Cleddau river.
The kea, mountain parrots, are often seen around the Homer Tunnel - watch your belongings though as they are very cheeky! Occasionally on the East Homer Nature Walk you may hear or glimpse a rare rock wren too - they live amongst the large boulders.
See: Milford Road Natural history and conservation
Along the Milford Road (between Te Anau and The Divide) you can stay at one of ten DOC camping areas. These are in picturesque spots beside bush, rivers and lakes, often with opportunities for bush walks or trout fishing nearby. Most have fire places, picnic tables, toilets and access to river water, and are very reasonably priced (take cash for self registration).
Please note that freedom camping (within 200m of the road) is not allowed on the Milford Road.
See: Conservation campsites in the Fiordland region
The Darran Mountains provide the greatest climbing challenge in the Fiordland area.
The most popular access is via the upper Hollyford Valley just off the Milford Road, south-east of the Homer Tunnel. Accommodation is available at the Homer Hut (external site) (NZ Alpine Club website).
See: Climbing in Fiordland
Diving & snorkelling
Piopiotahi (Milford Sound) Marine Reserve is one of the most popular places in Fiordland to dive and see the black corals for which the fiords are famous. The reserve covers an area of 690 hectares along the northern side of Milford Sound, from the head of the Sound to Dale Point.
See: Diving and snorkelling in Fiordland
The Milford Road offers access to the Eglinton & Cleddau Rivers. Both of which offer trout fisherman scenic, well stocked fishing holes. Fly fishing only.
See: Fishing in Fiordland
The Milford Raod offers access the popular red deer hunting areas of the Eglinton and Hollyford Valleys.
See: Hunting in Fiordland
Milford Sound is a very steep sided fiord with striking beauty, but busy with boat traffic. The southern side is more sheltered from the prevailing westerly winds, in particular the afternoon day breeze during summer. For camping there are two spots – Harrison Cove and Anita Bay. Access is by boat ramp off Deepwater Basin Road in Milford Sound. It is reccommeded to go with a guided company unless you have a high skill & experience level.
Guided kayaking and kayak hire options (external site) - Destination Fiordland website
See: Kayaking in Fiordland
The road from Te Anau to Milford Sound is one of New Zealand's most scenic drives.
Around every corner the vistas become even more dramatic - the U-shaped valleys open out then up to sheer, rugged basins and peaks as you near the road’s highest point.
Once through the Homer Tunnel, the road begins dropping and you will see grand views down to sea level.