Doubtful Sound, New Zealand

girl kayaking in doubtful sound in new zealand

Doubtful Sound, New Zealand

Hello everyone and welcome back to my blog. I hope everyone is doing okay under these awful circumstances! I hope to carry on with my blog as usual, hopefully it will aid as a little distraction for you. Todays post is all about sea kayaking in Doubtful Sound. It has to be one of the best experiences of my life!

Doubtful vs Milford

You may be wondering why we picked Doubtful over the infamous Milford sound. Well we had done or research and had heard from many people that Milford Sound is incredibly busy, like boats, planes and helicopters everywhere kind of busy. Whereas, Doubtful Sound on the other hand offers exactly the same but it’s quiet and peaceful. Why is that I hear you ask? Well because it’s a lot harder to get too. Milford has a road that leads straight to it. Whereas, to reach Doubtful you need to take a boat across lake Manapouri and then a bus to Doubtful and then when you get there you’ll need to take a kayak or boat to see the sound.

The weather in fiordland

We had also planned to see Milford by driving there in our hire camper van the next day. However, there was a huge weather front coming in which would have made the trip unenjoyable and maybe even a bit dangerous. As you can see from our images we had a very lovely small window of sunshine, which is extremely rare! We were told you can get up to 400km winds in the sounds and it rains most of the year, so be prepared! In fact the trip we went on had to cancel the people for the next day as the weather was going to be too bad for them to go out in!

view of doubtful sound fiordland in new zealand
couple kayaking in a double kayak in doubtful sound with snow topped mountains

The trip

We went with the company Doubtful Sound Kayak and had an amazing experience with them. Their office was actually at our campsite in Te Anau so we were picked up bright and early from there. We were in a group with 3 other couples with 2 guides (Cloudi and Mark) which were super friendly and informative. 

As mentioned we had a boat which took us over Lake Manapouri which was a stunning ride and took roughly half an hour. We then got into our kayaking gear which was all provided and hoped onto a mini bus which took us down to our kayaks. All in all we had 4 hours of kayaking around the sound. We were provided with tea and biscuits and had a quick break on the boat for our packed lunch. We even got to have a swim in the sound afterwards (which was optional.) Sam went in whereas, I didn’t as it is super cold and my body is really bad at warming itself up!

Summary and other posts

It was such an incredible experience and I couldn’t highly recommend it enough. If you’re lucky you may even have some encounters with wildlife such as, penguins and dolphins while out in your kayak! If you haven’t already please check out my other posts on: Moeraki boulders and Nugget Point, Mount Sunday, Lake Tekapo and Mount Cook, Kaikoura, Wellington, Cape Palliser, Tongarriro, Craters of the Moon, Rotorua, Hobbiton, Piha, Coromandel, Waitomo Caves and Auckland.

Lots of love, Melissa x

Video credit – Sam Gill

doubtful sound with clouds over hanging the mountains in new zealand

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