Kayak Milford Sound

Experience Milford Sound from sea level with an experienced guide and a small group of kayakers.

Paddling here is awesome, whatever the weather and whatever your previous paddling experience (or lack of it!). You’ll enjoy 4 – 5 hours on the water with the freedom to explore the fiord, check out the wildlife (seals and occasionally penguins and dolphins) and marvel at the natural wonders of Mitre Peak, Pembroke Glacier and thundering waterfalls. 

  • Small groups – maximum of 8 people per guide
  • Experienced kayak guides – who carry all the safety and emergency equipment, make all safety decisions, provide paddling advice and a comprehensive safety briefing
  • High-quality kayaking gear – please enquire for full list of "What we provide"
  • Competence in water and moderate fitness required
  • Minimum age 16 years
  • No paddling experience needed although energy, enthusiasm and a sense of humour all help

No Departures Currently Scheduled for the 2022/2023 season.

More Information

Getting there

Milford Sound is around 5-6 hours from Queenstown and around 3 hours from Te Anau (the nearest town). You can drive yourself to Milford Sound and park at Deepwater Basin where you will meet our guides.

What to bring

Kayaking within this designated world heritage area is unbeatable - but often encounters a huge variety of weather. Here’s a list of things you need to bring along with you to make sure you’re suitably equipped for your trip:

  • Swimsuit or underwear (for wearing under wetsuit)
  • Plastic bag for wet gear
  • Shorts
  • Soft shoes or sandals (note they will get wet)
  • Warm socks
  • Towel
  • Sunblock / Sun hat / Sun glasses / Insect repellent
  • Camera (disposable or waterproof)
  • Water bottle
  • Change of clothes, socks, footwear and rain jacket for wearing after kayaking
  • Packed Lunch

What we provide

  • Thermal top and leggings
  • Wetsuit vest, fleece top and hat and Pogies (paddling gloves)
  • Paddle jacket & Spray deck
  • Life jacket (buoyancy vest)
  • Dry bags (for your clothing and camera)
  • Map
  • Double kayaks / paddles
  • Group safety and emergency gear
  • Hot drinks

What to wear when kayaking

Please wear your swimsuit or kayaking underwear layer beneath warm clothes/waterproof jacket on pick-up (makes changing into paddling gear easier and quicker). The best way to carry your other gear to the launch point is in a backpack.

Safety & Risk

Sea kayaking has inherent risks and can be dangerous. In Fiordland, they are characterised by: remoteness, rapidly changing and sometimes extreme weather and water conditions, cold water and limited kayaking landing sites.

Detailed risk management and strict safety procedures are observed, however, there still remains an element of risk. RealNZ cannot absolutely guarantee participants safety. RealNZ accepts its legal responsibilities but cannot be held responsible for personal injury or for loss, theft or damage of/to your equipment outside legal responsibilities. Participants will be required to sign a liability form to this effect before starting a tour.

Changing conditions can mean that tours have to be modified. No two tours are the same. It is very rare but weather could delay your scheduled return by up to 24 hours e.g. road closures or weather conditions preventing kayaking. Clients on guided tours must listen carefully to and follow guides' instructions and adhere to safety requirements. Our reputation depends on your safety – we give it top priority and take it seriously.

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