Te Anau, a picturesque township on the shores of Lake Te Anau, is the gateway to the southern wilderness area of Fiordland National Park and Milford and Doubtful Sounds, as well as the departure point for many walking trails. Fiordland National Park is New Zealand largest conservation area.
The peaceful township of Manapouri lies on the shores of the lake of the same name and Waiau River. Manapouri triggered environmental consciousness in New Zealand in the 1950s when plans were made to flood the lake for power generation. Nowadays, Manapouri is the starting point for Doubtful Sound excursions and a variety of day and overnight walks.
Of the 14 fiords in the Fiordland region, only Milford Sound is accessible by road. From the head of the fiord, cruise boats take visitors past majestic Mitre Peak and 16 kilometres (10 miles) out into the open sea.
Doubtful Sound – three times longer and 10 times larger than Milford Sound – is Fiordland’s second-largest fiord. Accessed by boat and plane, this remote wilderness area is renowned for its wildlife and arresting natural beauty.