|Cruising the western coast of Lower Island|
In the afternoon, the Captain announced that we would indeed be able to enter and our exploration began. The entry is narrow and could easily be ignored. What a shame it would be to miss this area of fjords, waterfalls and snow-capped mountains.
|Notice the relationship between the boats and the cliffs|
A historian, who has been giving lectures throughout the cruise, gave commentary. Milford Sound is a fjord within Fiorland National Park and a World Heritage site. It is a place where lush rain forests cling to cliffs, while seals, penguins and dolphins frequent the water. There are two permanent waterfalls in the Sound, Lady Bowen Falls and Stirling Falls. Among the peaks inside are The Elephant and The Lion as well as Mount Kimberly, which is the largest in the Southern hemisphere. We were so fortunate to have sunny skies and calm water, as this is an area known for unpredictable weather, rain and storms.
Leaving the sound the captain informed us that the seas ahead were not as welcoming as the calmness of the Sound. There would be swells and high winds and we would feel the movement into the night. As we headed back to Australia, we wondered what we would experience as we crossed the Tasman Sea a second time.