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Five years ago a group of us went on an adventure at this most magnificent land down under: Milford Sound in New Zealand. Nostalgia is the exact word to express my emotions while writing this post. I’ve been living in New Zealand half of my life.  Now being in a bigger island, I often reminisce the good old-time in the little islands – New Zealand.  Especially that time with good friends tracking down the most famous walking trail, it would be in the top five memories I have.

Milford sound track is;

  1. Magical: the sceneries are just breath-taking and never experienced before.
  2. Refreshing: 4 days of breathing freshest air in the wildness of South island, no way you can beat that.
  3. Historical and Mysterious: part of the track is the old trail that the native Maori used to gathering and transporting valuable Greenstone. There are many Māori legends about the track and native species waiting for you to discover.
  4. Unforgettable: within short 4 days, we passed through many beautiful forests, swam many crispy clean rivers, climbed up Mackinnon summit, showered under the Sutherland Falls and cruise back Lake Te Anau from Sandfly point…Epic!
  5. Comfortable: wondering why? the whole trail is well organised by New Zealand department of Conservation.  There are actually 3 well-equipped huts to sleep in during the nights.  We not only got a bed space, but also a mattress base for comfort.  The huts also have modern bathrooms.  In addition, you also have gas supplies to cook a basic and nutritious meal for your next day walk.

 

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Honestly, no words can possibly explain how magnificent the walk was.  Thus we uploaded the video documented our experience and some wonderful sceneries.  Hopefully it will provide you a glimpse of our adventure. If you plan to visit New Zealand and love tracking, it’s a crime to miss Milford Sound walking Trail. The below are some tips we’d like share;

Logistics:

  • Book in Advance: Summer is the most popular time, book at least 6 months ahead;
  • Organise your transportation: arrange transport from Te Anau to Te Anau downs, book the boat in and out Milford, catch a bus to Te Anau from there,  once you’ve done your booking;
  • Book a night in Te Anau: optional, but highly recommended to book a night at Te Anau after the track, for real hot water shower;

Item lists in our backpack:
Apart from good pair of hiking boots and a backpack with good support to your back. Remember that you’ll carry your backpack the whole time, so every gram counts!

  • Warm light sleeping bag: The huts are comfortable, but you’ll definitely need one.
  • Toilet paper: believe or not, we have modern bath room in the huts not just long drops;
  • Matches/lighter: Yup, the huts have gas to cook your meal;
  • Water bottle: you can refill drinking water at the huts, amazing isn’t it?
  • Reusable plate/bowl and utensils and a little pot for cooking;
  • Enough food for the trail plus one extra day (in case you get stuck at some point because of the weather).  We brought instant noodles for 4 days, compressed food/biscuits, chocolate bars/energy bars, apricot (high in iron), mixed nuts and chewing gums (for fresh breath);
  • Rain jacket and water proof trousers and easy dry clothing/socks/inner garments:  It is normal to get at least one day of rain (heavy rain) during your trail so prepare to be wet;
  • Flip-flops/Jandals/Thong and swimming costume: No shower on the track, instead lots of stream and river to swim in or even get into the falls.
  • Repellent: MUST have. The trail head is at Sandfly point.  To deserve its name, it fulfilled with sand-flies, the most terrible little creatures in NZ, and you don’t want to (trust me you don’t) get bitten by them. Or you can eat a lot of Marmite, the myth says sand-fly doesn’t bite people had it;
  • Torch, a small cloth for washing your face,
  • Camera and GoPro: if you don’t mind an extra weight in your backpack. Carry a spare battery as there is no electricity in the huts.
  • Knee protection and walking poles: If you have weak knees, coming down from the summit on day 3 is very hard, and you have one more day of walking afterwards.
  • Be aware of the Kea, which is a lovely bird, but will steal anything you leave unattended, including your shoes… true story!

For more tips and booking, you can visit the official website.

All the best…Enjoy the sceneries and experience… totally worth it!