Milford Track

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Milford St

Milford Track Reviews

skippyed skippyed
27 reviews
Milford Track Dec 11, 2012
This 4 day spectacular multi day hike through South Islands Fiordland National Park and finishing in Milford Sound is one of New Zealand's Great Walks. The track is famous and very popular so booking needs to be made as early as six months in advance if you want a particular date. The walk can be booked through the below website (New Zealand Department of Conservation)

For the guided walk try:

The walk is not particularly hard but the days can be long, except the first day which is mainly boat ride. So a reasonable level of fitness it required. I would rate it as easy to medium, the third day being the hardest as you have to climb up and over Mackinnon Pass, switchbacks make the climb easier. For the guided walkers its even easier as all they carry is a day pack for the entire trip. Where as independent walkers have to carry all their food, sleeping bag and change of clothes.

A maximum of 40 independent walkers are allowed per day and 50 Guided walkers. The walk is over 4 days and you have to stay in huts you cannot camp. The independent walkers huts huts are comfortable with bunks with thick mattresses so the only bedding required is sleeping bag and pillow. The communal area has gas stoves, running water and there are flush toilets. Each hut has a resident ranger.

The cost of the walk per person in New Zealand dollars as at Dec 2012 if walking independently is as follows:

Bus from Te Anau to Te Anau Downs(optional) - $25

Boat from Te Anau Downs to Glade Warf - $77

Cost of hut per night (three huts in total) - $54

Boat from Sandfly Point to Milford Sound jetty - $41

Total Cost of walk was $305

This walk may seem expensive but it is well worth it as it's one of the most beautiful treks in New Zealand.

The guided version of the walk is around $2000

A word about SANDFLIES!

Just one last tip. This part of the world is notorious for an annoying biting insect known as the Sandfly. They are a small black fly which you can't really miss. You don't notice their bite straight away but you will notice the itch that follows which is worse in my opinion than Mozzie bites! and the itch can last for over a week. They seem resistant to standard bug spray so we picked a couple of bottles up of local stuff known as "Goodbye Sandfly" It contains a blend of all natural oils and its smells nice. This stuff works a treat but you do have to remember to keep re applying it every couple of hours or so. It's available in all outdoor shops and supermarkets in both Queenstown and Te Anau.
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Vikram says:
I sadly only spent time around the lake, but loved what I saw (of the greenery).
Posted on: Jan 18, 2013
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markdt markdt
4 reviews
Nov 16, 2007
5 Stars is a big call, but this could be the finest few days of hiking you ever experience. I'm basing that, mind you, mostly on my experience of hiking in NZ.

This is the most well known and walked track in NZ, so it's best to organise early. They say the only thing that has been more walked over by New Zealanders is the Australian Rugby Team, but that's another story...

I've walked it twice, but both times were several years ago, so things may have changed and I won't give you too many tiny details.

I took what was called a "guided tour" the first time with my whole family. I was only a small boy at the time. The company carries practicallly all your gear for you, and you stay basically in small hotels dotted along the trail. It's probably the most luxiourious hiking in NZ but it's not really necessary and it's very expensive.

I recommend just taking your stuff if you can because it's only a 4 day hike and the huts along the way are of top quality. From memory the hut costs per night are more expensive than most places, but still fairly cheap when you think of staying in hostels. And the huts are very comfortable. Running water is available so this cuts down on trips down to the river. There is also gas in the huts so you don't need to take your own cooker with you. You will need to book very early though - up to 1 year in advance for peak times I think - because it is very popular and they restrict the numbers on the walk. This makes for a better experience because it is not crowded.

There is one tough-ish day, and that's climbing over McKinnon Pass. The views are awe-inspiring. Most people take a rest day along the way to enjoy the scenery and kick back.

Most days are about 5 hours of walking I think, though of course this varies. People not used to walking for this long at once should think about getting fit to enjoy it more! Strong walking shoes, not just running shoes, would be a very good idea too.

It is VERY wet - the highest rainfall area in NZ. So get ready to get soaked. But the more water just means more ammunition for the dozens of cascading waterfalls you will see as walk through giant valleys. Spectacular.

It is a cold part of NZ so be aware you will get cold in the winter - I think it's up to the snowline when you go over the pass.

You end the trip at Sandfly bay which is named that for a reason - bring insect repellant to avoid being bitten.

This walk is famous for good reason. If you can get a booking organised in time, I fully recommend going.
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Milford Track Map