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Sailing the sounds in NZ


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Ovation spends the whole day going along and through the fiords.

It goes into Milford sound and turns around and sails through dusky and doubtful.

Its quite impressive a big ship like that.

they take on a pilot and a ex ranger that does a talk.


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As stated above.

They go into the three sounds during the day. Usually Milford first - spend about an hour 'right up in there' - there's a waterfall and when we were on Radiance the Captain put the nose of the ship right up close to it, the people on the front could practically touch the water!


The schedule generally says: 8-9am Milford, 1-2pm Doubtful and 4-5pm at Dusky sounds.

That's what it says on my upcoming cruise there anyway.

They spend ~ 1hr in the 'actual' (Milford) sound before coming back out but the entire day is really scenic and beautiful, particularly cruising in the afternoon through Doubtful/Dusky Sounds.


We were there on Radiance in 2011 and did the 3 sounds. 

We then were on Ovation in December 2016 and we were supposed to do all 3 but we encountered really bad weather, the whole way across from Sydney. We ended up only going into Milford Sound but spent around 3 - 4 hours there just slowly circling, then they had to skip the other 2 sounds and our planned itinerary round the bottom of the South Island and up to Dunedin.   The weather was going to get worse.

We then ended up heading back up the West Coast and into Wellington that way..

so, as always, nothing is guaranteed but the above would be a rarity I would think.

We've missed ports in the South Pacific Islands too due to bad weather.


We are booked on a NZ Quantum cruise in Jan '22 to do the Sounds again - it really is a beautiful part of NZ.

It was a toss up between the Sounds itinerary or Rotorua on the North Island again, it was hard to decide because we liked the luge excursion in Rotorua and haven't been to the Bay of Islands, but decided on the Sounds.  Hope we are sailing by then because I am very much looking forward to it!

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We travelled "down under" half the world for the NZ Sounds, especially Milford.


For us, it was a once in a life time trip. The crossing from Sydney was rough.


We were very lucky with the weather in the Sounds, turns out the week before us they skipped it due to bad weather.


Imagine travelling such a long way, only to be denied "entry"....


Auckland was very rainy.


Bay of Islands -- The glow worms cave was flooded due to heavy rain...


We were happy that we saw the Sounds, and everything else was a bonus.



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