Manapouri: Fiordland National Park Doubtful Sound Cruise

Activity provider: RealNZ

Manapouri: Fiordland National Park Doubtful Sound Cruise

Activity provider: RealNZ
Likely to sell out

From US$ 145.01 per person

Likely to sell out

Travel to an untouched world in Fiordland National Park. Cruise across Lake Manapouri, ride over Wilmot Pass in a coach, and explore the magical waterways of Doubtful Sound.

About this activity

Free cancellation
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Covid-19 precautions
Special health and safety measures are in place. Check your activity voucher once you book for full details.
Duration 7 hours
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Live tour guide


  • Enjoy a peaceful cruise across the crystal-clear Lake Manapouri to West Arm
  • Learn about the region's flora and fauna from a knowledgeable nature guide
  • Be on the lookout for dolphins, seals and even penguins
Full description

Spend a day in the remote wilderness of Doubtful Sound, located in the heart of Fiordland National Park and three times longer than Milford Sound. Self-drive to Manapouri and board a cruise across picturesque Lake Manapouri, followed by a bus trip across Wilmot Pass. Stop en route to experience the dense Fiordland rainforest. At Deep Cove, board the Patea Explorer, a purpose-built catamaran, for a 2-hour and 45-minute cruise on Doubtful Sound. See waterfalls, rainforests, and mountains during the cruise. You might spot the resident pod of bottlenose dolphins, the colony of fur seals at the mouth of the fiord, or even rare Fiordland crested penguins. During the cruise, knowledgeable nature guides will provide informative commentary.  When it rains in Fiordland, the landscape is dramatic - rock faces stream with waterfalls, mist hangs around the tops of the mountains, and rivers and streams rage.  From a dry comfortable vantage point on board the bus or vessel, this landscape is spectacular.

Be prepared for rainfall during your visit. Many say you have not seen Fiordland unless you have seen it in the rain. At the end of your tour, be returned to the departure point.

  • Lake Manapouri cruise
  • Transportation by bus
  • Commentary on the bus
  • Doubtful Sound cruise
  • Guide on cruise
  • Live commentary during the cruise
  • Drinks (available for purchase, cash only)

Select participants and date



Meeting point

Check-in at the Real NZ Visitor Center in Manapouri.

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Important information

What to bring

  • Sunglasses
  • Camera
  • Hiking shoes
  • Sunscreen
  • Jacket
  • Rain gear
  • Insect repellent
  • Cash
  • Weather-appropriate clothing

Know before you go

  • Allow approximately 2 hours and 45 minutes to drive to Manapouri from Queenstown and 30 minutes to drive to Manapouri from Te Anau
  • It is recommended to bring clothing and footwear for cool and wet weather
  • Only cash is accepted for purchases onboard
Customer reviews

Overall rating

4.8 /5

based on 317 reviews

Review summary

  • Guide
  • Transportation
  • Value for money
  • Safety

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Star rating:

This tour was outstanding. The operator was exceptionally well organised, the boats well maintained and the staff really friendly and knowledgeable. The weather was perfect and we enjoyed time on land lake and sea that included spectacular scenery and aquatic life. The tour exceeded our expectation and trumped a previous awesome day trip on Milford Sound.

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January 14, 2023

We had a fantastic day in Doubtful Sound - perfect weather with lots of sun and blue skies. We saw dolphins around the boat within thirty minutes of leaving the jetty (we were told that dolphin sightings can’t be guaranteed though) and when we reached the Tasman Sea, we saw seals. Even without the wildlife sightings the tour would’ve been great since the natural beauty of the fjord is just incredible. The nature guide on board added a lot of interesting and informative commentary. The 7 hour tour may seem long, but the hours fly by, since the trip is broken up into three parts (crossing Lake Manapouri, then the bus ride to the jetty - the actual Doubtful Sound Cruise is only 3 hours long). Both boats have comfortable sitting areas and a small snack bar on board (sandwiches, cakes, instant noodles, and other snacks, plus wine, beer, tea, coffee and sodas for sale) and the boat on Doubtful Sound even has a real espresso machine for perfect Flat Whites (much appreciate by me!)

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January 14, 2023

Nice variety. First drove to the harbor itself. There on the boat all over the lake. Wonderful boat trip. Then on the bus for a bus ride over a mountain range to the boat that takes us to Doubtful sound. What a beautiful nature, so beautiful. Definitely recommended. Staff tells a lot and tries to show as much as possible. A bus broke down on the way back and that was neatly resolved.

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January 12, 2023

Product ID: 126227