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3 unmissable stops along the Milford Road
If you’re planning an adventure or nature holiday to Milford Sound, make sure you leave plenty of driving time for all the beautiful stops along the way. Here are three suggestions to start you on your journey.
It has long been known that a journey is just as important as the destination on any adventure holiday, and the Milford Road is no different.
Winding its way through breathtaking mountain landscapes and down into panoramic valleys, the 240 kilometre road from Te Anau to Milford Sound has a range of stops and walks that rival the beauty of the sounds themselves. Here are three must-see locations along the road where you can park, stretch your legs, and take more photos than you have ever done before.
Along the flatter section of Milford Road, just 62 kilometres from Te Anau, are the unmissable Mirror Lakes. Easily accessible along a gently sloping boardwalk, the Mirror Lakes are set against a stunning mountain backdrop and the waters are so still that New Zealand's Department of Conservation has set the Mirror Lakes sign upside down in the water so you read it normally in the crystal-clear reflection.
The Homer Tunnel
The 1,240 metre-long Homer Tunnel project began way back in 1935 with just five men and was completed in 1953. Passing through this magnificent tunnel is the only way to Milford Sound for motorists, which is perfect because you wouldn't want to miss it anyway. The tunnel descends through the photogenic Darren Mountain Range and leads out into a huge, almost unbelievably gorgeous valley. There are car parks on either side for plenty of photo opportunities.
One of the most extraordinary short walks along the Milford Road, just a 10-minute drive from the Homer Tunnel, The Chasm weaves you through the midst of giant rainforest trees, dense, luminous bush and over the awe-inspiring chasm itself. As you cross over the walk's various bridges, a raging torrent of water thunders through the narrow, winding rock faces beneath your feet, carving out curvaceous and surreal rock patterns the likes of which you will have rarely seen before. If you're lucky you'll even see a few kea, New Zealand's cheekiest parrot, roaming these parts with confidence enough to walk right up to you.