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Milford Sound to Wellington Expedition Cruise

11 Days
Prices From:
US$ 6,564

Discover the awe-inspiring landscapes and breathtaking waterways of New Zealand on this expedition cruise. Journeying from Queenstown to Wellington, you’ll discover fjords like famous Milford Sound, go whale watching, hike through national parks, and visit charming seaside towns.

This 11-day New Zealand vacation takes you on a cruise from Queenstown to Wellington, taking in Milford Sound along the way. It features first-class accommodations on board a cruise vessel, shared tours, and is a great journey for nature lovers.

Your voyage begins in Queenstown, the adventure capital of New Zealand. There, you’ll board the Coral Discoverer, the cruise vessel that’ll be your home over the next 10 nights. Carrying a maximum of 72 passengers, the Coral Discoverer is small enough to access the inland waterways of New Zealand, but large enough to deliver an exceptional level of comfort. Begin your journey with a trip into Fiordland National Park to explore the world-famous waterways of New Zealand’s South Island. First stop is arguably the highlight of your vacation: Milford Sound, the most beautiful fjord in New Zealand. Cruise along the fjord and gaze up at Mitre Peak, the most photographed sight in the country. Continue to Thompson Sound to discover hidden channels teaming with wildlife. Turn into Dusky Sound to pass along sheer cliff faces and inlets before reaching Pigeon Island on the northern end of Lake Wakatipu.

Continue down the coast to Stewart Island, the most southerly part of New Zealand. This island is almost completely uninhabited and has an incredible amount of wildlife, including native birds like kiwis and wekas. Head east to Dunedin, where you’ll anchor in Otago Harbour and explore the city, from the posh art galleries to the famous botanical gardens. As you explore, you’ll admire the Victorian and Edwardian architecture that defines the city.

Further up the coast in Akaroa, you can go swimming with the rare Hector’s Dolphins and stroll through the village to learn about its English and French colonial history. Reach Kaikoura and spend a day whale watching out on the water. Not only do you have a good chance of seeing massive sperm whales, but you’ll also likely see dolphins and fur seals on rocky platforms out in the waves. Reach the Marlborough Sounds, the beautiful series of waterways on the northern end of the South Island. Spend a day cruising through these waterways, admiring the green landscape and deep-blue waters, before reaching Abel Tasman National Park, where you’ll spend a day kayaking and bushwalking through the forest. Then head back onto the Marlborough Sounds before crossing the Cook Strait to reach Wellington, New Zealand’s capital, where you’ll disembark.

This cruise makes for a great addition to a longer journey through New Zealand.


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11 Days
Prices From:
US$ 6,564

Itinerary View Trip Map

Day 1

Queenstown to Milford Sound

Morning coach transfer from Queenstown to Milford Sound arrives for a 2:00pm boarding. Enjoy a scenic cruise through Milford Sound.

Duration10 Nights

Coral Discoverer

More Info

  • Coral Discoverer

    Built for comfort and safety, the Coral Discoverer provides the luxury and convenience of larger cruise ships, yet with just 72 passengers, is small enough access sites beyond the reach of larger vessels. The Coral Discoverer features plenty of open deck space and air-conditioned lounge …

    Built for comfort and safety, the Coral Discoverer provides the luxury and convenience of larger cruise ships, yet with just 72 passengers, is small enough access sites beyond the reach of larger vessels. The Coral Discoverer features plenty of open deck space and air-conditioned lounge areas for guest comfort. There are outdoor and indoor bars and single-seating dining indoors. Its 2016 refurbishment has brought on board amenities to an even higher level -- the Sun Deck is a new social space and hub of on board community, underneath of which is a covered deck area complete with round bar, a sundeck with lounges and an area for outdoor exercise equipment. Our captain welcomes you on the bridge to observe ship operations and have a friendly chat. Coral Discoverer excursions are made on board the specially-designed excursion vessel 'Xplorer', and a fleet of inflatable Zodiacs.


    • Air Conditioning
    • Bar
    • Gift Shop
    • Laundry Facilities (Surcharge)
    • Library
    • Lounge
    • Scuba Diving
    • Spa/Jacuzzi
    • Sundeck
    • WiFi

    More Details

Day 2

Thompson Sound to Doubtful Sound

Explore Fiordland's most spectacular waterway, as we cruise through a maze of hidden channels, home to myriad wildlife.

Day 3

Dusky Sound to Pigeon Island

Dusky Sound is dramatic and remote. Cruise among the sheer cliffs and explore the inlets.

Day 4

Stewart Island

Stewart Island is almost totally wilderness, and home to vast numbers of seals, birds and other wildlife. A guided walk discovers native birds such as the weka, tui, and kiwi.

Day 5


Cruise Otago Harbour, before visiting Dunedin. Spend the day exploring all that the city has to offer, including its beautifularchitecture, art galleries, and botanical gardens.

Day 6


Discover the French history of this scenic village. Optional activities include swimming with the rare Hector's Dolphin (optional extra).

Day 7


Join a special whale-watching cruise to view the giant Sperm Whale in its natural environment, along with fur seals and dolphins.

Day 8

Marlborough Sounds

Explore the spectacular waterways including the fjord-like Queen Charlotte Sound. Enjoy a multitude of interpreted explorations.

Day 9

Tasman Bay to Golden Bay

Kayaking and bushwalking in Abel Tasman National Park.

Day 10

Marlborough Sounds

Return to the Marlborough Sounds for more discovery, with the interpretation of the Expedition Team.

Day 11


Disembark in Wellington at 8:00am.

Other Information


2022 - Coral DiscovererTo be advised


  • 10 nights' on board accommodation
  • Captain's Welcome and Farewell Drinks
  • Showcase wines, selected beers, juices and soft drinks with lunch and dinner service
  • Daily lectures and briefings, slide/film presentations, and other group activities
  • Guided adventure touring and walks
  • Group transfers during the cruise
  • All meals, morning and afternoon teas
  • Guided tours on purpose built expedition vessel "Xplorer"
  • Use of snorkelling equipment, inc masks, snorkel and fins
  • 24 hour tea/coffee station
  • Coach transfer from Milford Sound to Queenstown or Queenstown to Milford Sound (to join flights/ship)
  • Port taxes and port charges imposed by government authorities


  • Travel insurance
  • International and domestic airfare & airfare taxes
  • Visa fees if applicable
  • Meals and beverages not specifcally indicated
  • Items of a personal nature
  • Arrival and departure transfers


Prices are "from" per person based on twin/double share accommodation and for travel in low season. Seasonal surcharges and blackout dates may apply. Limited seat/spaces and all pricing is subject to change and availability. Rates for single or triple travellers are available on request - please enquire.

8 Dec 2020
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