Milford Sound, South Island, New Zealand
The Milford Track has been described as one of New Zealand’s and indeed the world’s most popular and beautiful walks. The trail is walked from Glade Wharf at Lake Te Anu to Sandfly Point at Milford Sound and was originally a track used by Maori to collect greenstone.
John Mackay and Donald Sutherland were the first European explorers to see the Sutherland Falls and Mackay Falls in 1880 and Quintin Mackinnon was the first to open up the trail to the public. Today it is used by 140,000 people annually and is 53km long. The route passes through rainforest, waterfalls, fjords, lakes and mountains and takes in some of the most spectacular New Zealand landscapes.
In peak season the trail is completed on a one way system and walkers must complete it within four days. Some of the key sights are the Mackinnon Pass, the ring of mountains known as the Nicholas Cirque and Milford Sound itself. There are huts to stay along the route which are basic but provide shelter. At the end of the route Sandfly Point can only be reached by sea either by sea kayak or regular ferry.