After long stint in Queenstown, we finally departed to do a tour of the Deep South of New Zealand, which included Milford Sound and Dunedin. We had heard pretty mixed reviews about this part of the trip, and when I say mixed reviews, some say Milford Sound was the best thing they had seen in all of New Zealand, whilst others – Tom and Jess included – had said it was the worst part of their whole trip.
Day 1: Milford Sound to Invercargill
So with high hopes we set off onto a very long road trip down to Milford Sound, which took about 5 hours in total – not the best start. What also didn’t help, was that Milford Sound is the wettest inhabited place in the whole of New Zealand, which meant there was a good chance our trip would be rained on the whole time – which it was.
We stopped off on our way to Milford Sound for a quick break and to stretch our legs, and also admire some of the scenery.
All the clouds gave the whole scenery a real cool look, but you can see the kind of weather we were in store for. Just as we hopped back on the bus it started to rain! But we had been told that Milford Sound was actually better in the rain, because it meant the waterfalls were bigger, and therefore better to look at.
It was true, the waterfalls were indeed bigger, but it was hard to appreciate them when there was torrential rain… as in it was raining so hard it hurt!
I managed to get a few photos, by quickly diving out the side and snapping them before quickly running back under shelter.
But I’m afraid they weren’t great quality, as I honestly couldn’t stand out for more than a few seconds before the camera got drenched, as well as myself.
Some people braved the weather and stood out on the deck, but as we had another 5 hour bus journey ahead of us, we decided, it may not have been worth it, especially as visibility wasn’t that great due to the weather anyway!
So we made do with watching from behind the windows and braving the occasional photo.
We ended up huddling indoors with some hot soup! I feel like Milford Sound would be amazing in the sunshine, but unfortunately we weren’t lucky with the weather, which actually made such a difference as we couldn’t really enjoy the scenery at all.
We hopped back on the bus, and continued our journey for the next 5 hours down to Invercargill where we would spend the night.
Day 2: Invercargill to Dunedin
The next day consisted of another early start, and a long day on the bus on our way down to Dunedin. We stopped briefly in a town called Bluff, where we picked up supplies for the day and then began our journey.
We stopped off along the way a lot, where we got some really nice views along the coastline.
And we were pretty far from home…
I think around 18,000km from London! We were lucky with the sun being out today, so all the stops along the way were really pretty, but maybe not worth it for all the time on the bus…
At one of the beaches we stopped at along the way, there was a walrus just chilling on the beach
We could stand really close to it, and it literally didn’t have a care in the world that we were there… which was pretty cool. This was at Waipapa beach, which was really beautiful
We stopped at McLean Falls, where we could walk up to the waterfall, which was a nice break from the bus for about an hour. (This is where Grace and I actually decided to go back to Queenstown to stay after our trip down South)
And our final stop of the day was to another lighthouse.
This was a really beautiful coastal walk down to the lighthouse, the water surrounding us was so blue! This was called Nugget Point lighthouse, with the rocks in the water being the “nuggets”.
After another long day on the bus, we made it to Dunedin, where we caught up with Leigh, and ended the day sharpening our pool skills at the hostel.
Day 3: Dunedin to Queenstown
This morning we had a bit of a lie in, as we weren’t getting picked up again until around midday. We spent the morning meeting up with a friend of Grace’s who was currently at university in Dunedin, before hopping on the bus back to Queenstown.
On the way we made a pit stop at the World’s Steepest Street aka Baldwin Street according to the Guinness World Records
Of course we climbed to the top, and it was indeed very steep.
The pictures don’t really do it justice.
And the view from the top
We made our way back down, and headed back to Queenstown for our last few days together.