Most people who visit Milford Sound in one day start from Queenstown. However, a Te Anau to Milford Sound day tour has several advantages.
The beautiful town of Te Anau is much closer to Milford Sound than Queenstown, so the trip there and back will be considerably shorter. The drive from Te Anau to Milford Sound is approximately 118km (73 miles). If you’re starting from Queenstown the distance is 288km (173 miles). This extra distance will of course increase the amount of time you’ll spend on board the coach during your day tour.
Day tours to Milford Sound from Queenstown depart early in the morning and travel non-stop to Te Anau for a morning tea break. Passengers starting their Milford Sound day tour from Te Anau then board the coach, and the whole group travels into scenic Fiordland National Park. So if you start your day tour from Te Anau, you can sleep in and enjoy the sights of this pretty lakeside town before your tour begins.
All the scenic photo opportunities along the road to Milford Sound take place after the coach departs Te Anau and enters Fiordland National Park. This means you won’t feel like you’ve missed out on the amazing scenery a Milford Sound day tour provides.
Milford Sound to Te Anau… and beyond
At the end of the day, after your stunning Milford Sound cruise and all the highlights of the Milford Road, you’ll return to Te Anau, arriving in the late afternoon or early evening (usually around 5pm, depending on your tour company). You’ll then have plenty of time to relax and freshen up after your tour before enjoying your evening activities and dinner.
Of course, if you prefer you can always start your Milford Sound tour in Te Anau and continue on to the bright lights of Queenstown in the evening! Most coach tour operators are flexible and can arrange this Te Anau – Milford Sound – Queenstown day tour option for you.
View tour operators offering Milford Sound day tours from Te Anau