5 star rating: Highly Recommended 54 Reviews

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  • Location:Queenstown, New Zealand
  • Duration:2 days (approx.)

Doubtful Sound Overnight Cruise

This Doubtful Sound overnight cruise takes you over Manapouri Lake to this South Island gem in the UNESCO-listed Fiordland National Park. Board the ‘Fiordland Navigator,’ a traditional three-mast sailing scow, and cruise past soaring granite peaks in New Zealand’s second-largest fiord. Learn from an onboard nature guide about wildlife such as fur seals, penguins and bottlenose dolphins. Then spend the night in a comfortable cabin, including a 3-course buffet dinner and breakfast. Join the cruise in Manapouri or include coach transfers from Te Anau or Queenstown.


  • Doubtful Sound Overnight Cruise from Manapouri
  • Cruise the crystal waters of Lake Manapouri
  • Travel the alpine route over Wilmot Pass for exceptional views of the Fiordland
  • Explore the pristine waters of Doubtful Sound
  • See a vast array of wildlife, including dolphins and penguins in their natural habitat
  • Choose to join the cruise in Manapouri or connect by luxury coach from Queenstown or Te Anau

Recent Photos of This Tour

What You Can Expect

Doubtful Sound Overnight Cruise

Doubtful Sound Overnight Cruise

Start your Doubtful Sound overnight cruise from Manapouri, or board a luxury coach for a convenient round-trip transfer from Te Anau or Queenstown. Your South Island adventure begins with a short trip across island-strewn Lake Manapouri, followed by a bus ride over Wilmot Pass for sensational views of the Fiordland. You’ll then descend to Deep Cove in Doubtful Sound to meet the crew and board the Fiordland Navigator.

This purpose-built sailing scow, designed with the charm of a traditional sailing vessel combined with modern comforts, includes spacious viewing decks, an observation lounge, a dining saloon and fully licensed bar.

Cruise the entire length of Doubtful Sound — three times longer and 10 times larger than Milford Sound, and the second largest of the 14 fiords in World Heritage–listed Fiordland National Park. With deep inlets and ancient rainforests that cling to soaring granite peaks, Doubtful Sound offers one of New Zealand’s most dramatic landscapes.

Your captain navigates the pristine waterway while a specialist nature guide on board explains the vast array of flora and fauna. Search the waters for bottlenose dolphins, New Zealand fur seals and Fiordland penguins in their natural habitats.

The crew drops anchor in a sheltered cove in the late afternoon, allowing you to explore the shoreline by kayak or tender craft (small boat) with a nature guide.

Dig into a delicious buffet dinner prepared by the onboard chef, and relax in the dining saloon before retiring to your cozy cabin (accommodations are single, twin, triple or quad-share).

In the morning, following a cooked or continental breakfast, cruise a little further before returning to Manapouri, where you may be transferred back to Te Anau or Queenstown.


Customer Reviews

Richard B

5 star rating: Highly Recommended February 2016

A fantastic tour. Very informative nature guide, great breakfast, dinner and snacks. Had a wonderful time, spectacular scenery and recommend this tour

Mrs MB O

5 star rating: Highly Recommended January 2016

Brilliant. Crew were very helpful and knowledgeable and we had excellent weather which put the icing on the cake.

Emma F

5 star rating: Highly Recommended January 2016

Great trip - highly recommend. Stunning location, great service, great food and excellent tour information. An expensive trip but ultimately worth it. Be prepared for a lot of travel before and after the actual cruise as you are heading into wilderness but that said, it and #39;s all part of the experience!

Kenneth United States of ... 

5 star rating: Highly Recommended December 2015

Outstanding cruise and tour. If you can afford the extra cost, it is far superior to Milford Sound. Dramatically fewer tourists, superior experience of the southwest coast fjords. Top notch crew, and an excellent boat captain that brings you close to the shore and sea features. Perhaps the best experience during our 19-day tour of the north and south islands.

Kathleen M

5 star rating: Highly Recommended December 2015

Unforgettable!! This was an extraordinary tour, very professionally run from start to finish. We were able to view stunning scenery and rare sightings of whales, penguins, dolphins, and seals. The weather started out rainy, which was OK, but then turned brilliantly clear, with a sky filled with millions of stars. Do NOT miss this tour, if you can swing it. Worth every penny.

Susan B

5 star rating: Highly Recommended December 2015

Wow! Don't miss this one, it is amazing. From the moment you are picked up to the time you are dropped off this is such a wonderful trip. All the crew from coach drivers to chefs to the skippers are so informative and helpful. I can't praise it highly enough. Great activities, food and rooms make it all the more enjoyable. Making new friends along the way is very easy as everyone is so relaxed. The crew are one very well oiled machine, they all wear many hats. Thank you for all making this a very happy adventure.

Robin A

5 star rating: Highly Recommended December 2015

Despite slightly miserable weather we could not fault anything about this cruise. It was fantastic!


5 star rating: Highly Recommended November 2015

The whole trip from leaving Queenstown was fabulous. The scenery absolutely breathtaking, the weather perfect, the boat comfortable, the food great, the staff helpful and knowledgeable. I would certainly recommend the trip to anyone interested in taking advantage of the wonderful opportunity of exploring a hidden gem of the West Coast.

Larry D

5 star rating: Highly Recommended November 2015

Fantastic voyage. The best excursion we have ever been on. The crew was friendly and efficient. We couldn't have expected more.
Larry and Eva Durey

V. M

5 star rating: Highly Recommended November 2015

We loved our Doubtful Sound overnight cruise. Just getting to the cruise boat is an adventure--Lake Manapouri boat ride and then an overland bus ride to get to the cruise boat. We especially liked having a naturalist on the boat explaining what we were seeing. The morning of the cruise, he had all us passengers sit up front with him and asked that we could be silent to hear the sounds of nature. It was magical!!

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Tour code: 2264RJ350_351_358


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