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Dusky Sound Discovery Expeditions

Follow in the footsteps of Captain Cook and explore an untouched world on a 5 day expedition

True adventure doesn’t follow an itinerary.

Our crew are experts in the area with years of experience and ensure you are getting the very best bespoke experience.  Every night they will advise of the plan for the following day to give you plenty of time to take it in.  Weather, tides and sea conditions all play a role in the planning, as does the ability of the group.

Therefore, the sample journey is a general guide only, all trips are subject to change based on weather conditions and crew judgment and that’s what makes this expedition unique.

Where time allows, additional walks, tender craft exploration and kayaking activities are offered.

Dusky Sound - 5 days with no heli

Sample Journey

Day 1 - Cruise across Lake Manapouri, coach over stunning Wilmot Pass to Deep Cove, Doubtful Sound. Board the Milford Wanderer and cruise out of Doubtful Sound with approximately a three-hour sea passage to Breaksea Sound to conclude the day.

Day 2 - Cruise through the Acheron Passage to Dusky Sound where Captain Cook spent four weeks on his second voyage in 1773. Dusky Sound is 40 kilometres in length and eight kilometres wide at its widest point and over three hundred islands lie in this Sound. Embark on a five-hour return hike on Cooper Island that is rewarded with magnificent views of nearly the full length of the fiord out to the coast. For a gentler experience, the tender craft will take you to explore remote parts of the island instead.

Day 3 - Continue to explore Dusky Sound as you start another day with a visit to early conservationist Richard Henry’s house site on Pigeon Island. Richard Henry was the caretaker of New Zealand’s first island wildlife sanctuary in the 19th century. Cruise down past Parrot and Pigeon Island toward Facile Harbour. This is where in 1795, the first shipwreck was recorded in New Zealand’s history. Cruise through Earshell Cove and the narrow channels of Resolution Island to The Basin for a walk or some kayaking.

Day 4 - Cruise to Luncheon Cove, a historical site of New Zealand’s’ first European settlement for a group of sealers.  A walk on predator-free Anchor Island will take you through one of the most ecological diverse sanctuaries in New Zealand. Everyone can come ashore and hear the fascinating history, then the longer walkers depart for around three hours and a tender craft excursion will depart for a more relaxed option. Cruise through the Acheron passage to Breaksea Sound and then approximately a three-hour sea passage to Doubtful Sound.

Day 5 - Cruise Doubtful Sound and Hall Arm. Leave the Milford Wanderer in Deep Cove and cross by coach over stunning Wilmot Pass. Cruise across Lake Manapouri to complete your journey at the Real Journeys Manapouri Visitor Centre. 

Dusky Sound - 5 days with heli-out

Please note this is a general guide only, all itineraries are subject to change based on weather conditions and crew judgement. In addition to below there is also lots of cruising, and extra kayaking or walking where time allows!

Day 1 - Manapouri to Breaksea Sound
Cruise across Lake Manapouri and coach over stunning Wilmot Pass to Deep Cove, Doubtful Sound. Board the Milford Wanderer and cruise out of Doubtful Sound with a 3 hour sea passage to Breaksea Sound to conclude the day.

Day 2 - Breaksea Sound to Dusky Sound
Cruise through Acheron passage to Dusky Sound and visit the Shag Islands and Sportsman Cove. In the afternoon visit Luncheon Cove, the site of New Zealand’s first European and sealers settlement. Optional guided walk (2.5km) over predator free Anchor Island.

Day 3 - Explore Dusky Sound
Start the day with a visit to early conservationist Richard Henry’s house site on Pigeon Island. Cruise Facile harbour, site of NZ’s first known European ship wreck.  Cruise through Earshell Cove and the narrow channels of Resolution Island to The Basin for a walk or some kayaking.

Day 4 - Explore Dusky Sound
Visit Pickersgill Harbour and Astronomers Pt- named and used by Cook during his five week stay in 1773. Kayaking and cruising time.

Day 5 - Dusky Sound to Manapouri
Helicopter from Supper Cove helipad to West Arm of Manapouri. Cruise across Lake Manapouri to complete your journey at the Real Journeys Manapouri Visitor Centre.

Dusky Sound – 5 days with heli-in

Please note this is a general guide only, all itineraries are subject to change based on weather conditions and crew judgement.In addition to below there is also lots of cruising, and extra kayaking or walking where time allows!

Day 1 - Manapouri to Dusky Sound
Cruise from Real Journeys Manapouri Visitor Centre to West Arm of Manapouri. Helicopter to Supper Cove helipad to board the Milford Wanderer. Cruise through Acheron passage to Dusky Sound and visit the Shag Islands and Sportsman Cove.

Day 2 - Explore Dusky Sound
Visit Luncheon Cove, the site of New Zealand’s first European and sealers settlement. Optional guided walk (2.5km) over predator free Anchor Island. Visit Pickersgill Harbour and Astronomers Pt- named and used by Cook during his five week stay in 1773. Kayaking and cruising time.

Day 3 - Explore Dusky Sound
Start the day with a visit to early conservationist Richard Henry’s house site on Pigeon Island. Cruise Facile harbour, site of NZ’s first known European ship wreck.  Cruise through Earshell Cove and the narrow channels of Resolution Island to The Basin for a walk or some kayaking.

Day 4 - Dusky Sound to Doubtful Sound
Cruise through Acheron passage to Breaksea Sound and then a 3 hour sea passage to Doubtful sound.

Day 5 - Doubtful Sound to Manapouri
Cruise Doubtful Sound and Hall Arm. Leave the Milford Wanderer in Deep Cove and cross by coach over stunning Wilmot Pass.  Cruise across Lake Manapouri to complete your journey at the Real Journeys Manapouri Visitor Centre.

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