Introduction

You can access Fiordland National Park and many of its attractions by road via Te Anau by airplane, boat or walking. There are a number of commercial operators offering transport for visitors.

Find out how to get to Fiordland by road, by airplane, boat or walking via tracks. There are a number of commercial operators offering transport for visitors.

Fiordland National Park is in the south-western corner of New Zealand, and covers an area of 1,260,740 hectares. The largest town is Te Anau, followed by Manapouri and Milford Sound.

Access by road is via Te Anau, Lake Manapouri, and other points on the Scenic Southern Route.

Road access

Te Anau is considered the ‘gateway to Fiordland’ and can be reached by SH6 and SH94 from Queenstown or SH1 and SH94 from Invercargill. Regular bus services are available from these centres.

Fiordland National park is accessible from many points on or adjoining the roads between Te Anau and Milford Sound (ie, Milford Road, Hollyford Road), Te Anau and Manapouri (e.g. Rainbow Reach) and Manapouri and Tuatapere (eg, Borland Road, Lake Hauroko).

The Southern Scenic Route offers road access to southern Fiordland locations - on Southern Scenic Route website

See: Transport services in Fiordland

Air access

There are airports in Te Anau, Manapouri and Milford Sound, offering some commercial flights and private aviation services.

Boat access

To access parts of Fiordland by sea, boat launching is available at Milford Sound, Doubtful Sound and on the southern coast including the port of Bluff near Invercargill.

To access Doubtful Sound, trailer boats can be barged across Lake Manapouri to West Arm and driven over the Wilmot Pass to Doubtful Sound (contact Real Journeys for barge booking). There is a charge for using the Wilmot Pass Road (contact Fiordland National Park Visitor Centre for details).

For freshwater access, boat launching is available at most lakes accessible by road, including Lake Te Anau, Lake Manapouri, Lake Monowai, Lake Hauroko. Please be aware of freshwater weeds – check, clean, dry all items before entering, and when moving between, waterways.

Didymo: help protect Fiordland’s rivers from this weed
Boating in Fiordland

Walking access

Access the Park by walking from either Te Anau or Manapouri, or from further afield (e.g. walk from Queenstown area via the Routeburn Track).

Road distances and times

The Automobile Association travel time and distance calculator can provide travel times for these frequent driving routes to the Te Anau and Fiordland region:

  • Queenstown to Te Anau
  • Invercargill to Te Anau
  • Dunedin to Te Anau
  • Christchurch to Te Anau
  • Te Anau to Milford Sound
  • Te Anau to Manapouri
  • Te Anau to Tuatapere 
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