Explore Doubtful, Nancy, Caswell, Bligh and Milford Sounds aboard the Fiordland Jewel
Truly explore New Zealand’s largest National Park aboard our purpose built catamaran, the Fiordland Jewel, on a six-night scenic expedition deep into the Northern Fiords. Part of the Te Wahipounamu World Heritage Site, this untouched treasure of the south is rich in history and teeming with birds and sea life. The mountains seem to rise straight out of the sea, making for incredible vistas on every turn.
Stay six nights in one of our nine climate-controlled cabins, all of which have sea views and private ensuites. On a clear night, relax in the top deck hot tub and experience stargazing in a sky entirely free of light pollution. Take one of our kayaks out for a paddle and soak in the exceptional peace and tranquility of the area’s wilderness landscapes.
Our crew loves to share stories from the area and are great at spotting wildlife, such as fur seals, penguins, bottlenose dolphins and the many native birds that call the surrounding forests and shoreline home. Depending on your wishes, there may be opportunities for both short walks and fishing. You might even bring in the catch of the day to be cooked up by our onboard chef, who creates every meal in our fully equipped commercial kitchen.
Individual cabins can be booked for yourself, your small group of family and friends, or as a couple, for an experience you’ll be talking about for years to come. A maximum of 18 passengers.
CURRENT AVAILABILITY IN 2024
Friday June 21 - Thursday June 27 - 8 cabins a/v - 1 Governor, 3 Captain Cook, 2 Endeavour, 2 Resolution
Retail prices are based on twin share, GST inclusive and in NZD, includes transfer per person into or out of Doubtful Sound from/to Manapouri (Boat/Coach) and into or out of Milford Sound from/to Manapouri (Van), excludes beverages purchased from our licensed bar on board the Fiordland Jewel.
Return transfers from Queenstown are available for an additional $200 per person.
Your adventure will start in Manapouri at 12.30pm with a boat transfer across Lake Manapouri to West Arm, where you will change to a coach to travel over the Wilmot Pass. Here you will capture breathtaking vistas of Doubtful Sound and the surrounding Mountains. You will board the Fiordland Jewel at Deep Cove.
After meeting the crew and settling into your cabins you can relax and take in the sensational surrounds and discover untouched landscapes thriving with an abundance of wildlife. Doubtful Sound is defined by lush rainforests clinging to dramatic peaks. Waterfalls are also gloriously abundant in the area.
We cruise the arms and view the islands of Doubtful Sound and at some stage, depending on the weather, we head towards Nancy Sound and spend the next few days visiting Caswell, George and Bligh Sounds.
We may do activities such as:
View incredible wildlife - keep an eye out for bottlenose dolphins and fur seals, on rare occasions we may encounter whales
Spot birds such as the rare and captivating Fiordland crested penguin, New Zealand falcons, white-faced herons, white herons, cattle egrets, a variety of shags and the common black-backed gull. On our short sea passages we frequently see Albatross including the Royal Albatross which has the longest wingspan in the world.
Some fishing to catch a feed, if you wish to do so
Kayaking and tender boat excursions
There is also the possibility to launch the (ROV) remote-operated vehicle, which provides high resolution live underwater footage which you can view from the comfort of the boat lounge (weather permitting).
Enter the magnificent Milford Sound
Cruise past Bowen Falls, Sinbad Gully, the world-renowned Mitre Peak, Mt Pembroke, Bridal Veil Falls and Fairy Falls then we venture up the north side of the fiord past Dale Point, the Piopiotahi Marine Reserve, Seal Rock, Stirling Falls, The Lion and the Cascade Range. After cruising, we anchor at Deepwater Basin for the night.
Watch the sunrise over continental breakfast, which is served from 7am-8am, before returning to the terminal at 9.00am. Van transfer back to your vehicle in Manapouri (included).
Of course, the weather is central to a Fiordland experience, so the itinerary of your cruise may differ depending on the conditions on the day. The above sample itinerary is from Doubtful Sound ending in Milford Sound, Milford Sound to Doubtful Sound is in reverse.
All meals - all dietary requirements are catered for. Complimentary tea & coffee.
Some fishing to catch a feed, if you wish to do so
Use of our kayaks and top-deck hot tub (weather dependent)
In each cabin: Toiletries, body wash & shampoo/conditioner (Evolu), hairdryer, linen and bath towels
Wine, beer & soft drinks (no spirits), these are available for you to purchase from our licensed on board bar. Please note: Do not bring alcohol on board with you, as this will breach our liquor license.
My favourite of all the trips seeing the Fiords in winter from a cosy and comfortable boat. The snow makes the landscape even more dramatic and the quality of the reflections in the Fiords has to be seen to be believed. Fantastic food and lovely responsive and friendly crew. The conservation values of the team really stood out. As a non kayaker the tender rides we had were a lot of fun.
I just love being in that extraordinary environment and soaking it all in. Its such a very special place and its an absolute privilege to be able to travel through Fiordland. The wildlife encounters have been amazing with dolphins playing in the wake, the baby seal pups playing in their pool, the royal albatross, the petrels, shearwaters and penguins all adding to the mix, and then on land seeing the native plants and trees and the huge range of green.
Ann, Wellington, New Zealand