Te Anau, located on the edge of Fiordland National Park in New Zealand, is a true gem. With stunning lakes, majestic mountains and charming towns, Te Anau is the perfect destination for nature lovers and adventure seekers alike. Whether you’re a fan of scenic boat rides, hiking, fishing, or just relaxing and taking in the beauty of the great outdoors, Te Anau won’t disappoint! In this post, we’ll be exploring the best attractions and things to do in Te Anau, so you can make the most of your trip and experience all that this amazing region has to offer. So pack your bags and get ready for a journey through the natural wonders of Te Anau!
The 4 Best Things To Do Around Te Anau
- Milford Sound Small Group Tour Cruise Lunch from Te Anau
- From Te Anau 1 Day Milford Sound Coach Cruise
- Milford Sound Coach Cruise Underwater Observatory Lunch
- Te Anau Glowworm Caves Tour
The 4 Best Things To Do Around Te Anau
1. Milford Sound Small Group Tour Cruise Lunch from Te Anau
Take a guided small group tour by comfortable minibus from Te Anau to Milford Sound and its surrounding area. Your tour includes a sightseeing cruise, a picnic lunch and plenty of scenic stops along the way.
Begin by meeting your guide in Te Anau and drive along the lakeside making a stop at Te Anau Downs to soak in the scenery. Enter into Fiordland National Park and visit Eglinton Valley to admire the landscape sculptured by an ancient glacier. After that, continue to Mirror Lakes and see the Earl Mountains reflected in these clear waters. Relax and take photos by Lake Gunn before continuing towards Hollyford River. Pass the waterfall at Falls Creek as you head higher into the Darran Mountains stopping at viewpoints along the way.
During the tour, enjoy a sightseeing cruise on Milford Sound with mesmerizing views of Mitre Peak. Also, keep an eye out for native birds and other wildlife. Experience the best of Milford Sound and its surroundings with a knowledgeable guide.
2. From Te Anau 1 Day Milford Sound Coach Cruise
If you’re visiting Te Anau, taking a day tour to Milford Sound is a must-do. The journey alone is worth the trip – you’ll travel on a comfortable premium coach and take in the incredible panoramic views on the road to Milford Sound. Your experienced local coach driver will show you the best short walks and photo stops along the way, so you won’t miss a thing.
Once you arrive at Milford Sound, you’ll board the original cruise to get up close to the towering mountains and stunning waterfalls. You may even spot some of the native wildlife. The commentary is available in foreign languages, so everyone can enjoy the tour.
Milford Sound is approximately a 5-hour drive or a 45-minute flight from Queenstown or Te Anau, so taking a coach is a convenient and comfortable option. This is the perfect tour for nature enthusiasts and anyone who wants to experience the beauty of Milford Sound without any hassle.
3. Milford Sound Coach Cruise Underwater Observatory Lunch
Set off on an intimate day trip from Te Anau to Milford Sound and experience the most in-depth Milford Sound day trip available. Encounter the majestic alpine Milford Road on your way to the fiord, where you will embark on a small, more personalized cruise. Cruise beneath towering waterfalls, spot the native wildlife, and marvel at the grandeur of the mountains.
Your journey will include short walks and photo stops along Milford Road, led by an experienced local bus driver who will provide interesting and informative commentary. Upon arrival at Milford Sound, relax on the cruise with a freshly prepared picnic lunch, and visit New Zealand’s only floating underwater observatory. Get within touching distance of imposing rock walls and marvel at the up-close view of Stirling Falls.
Your passionate skipper will share their local knowledge with lively and informative commentary, making this a day trip that you will remember for a lifetime. Don’t miss out on this unique opportunity to experience Milford Sound like never before.
4. Te Anau Glowworm Caves Tour
Experience a mysterious and enchanting underground world during the Te Anau Glowworm Caves Tour. This tour will take you to the western shores of Lake Te Anau where you will embark on a scenic cruise before heading underground to explore the caves.
Your knowledgeable guide will lead you through the cave system, pointing out fascinating rock formations and providing insight on its history. As you wander through the caves, you’ll hear the sound of water echoing off the walls and see the light of hundreds of tiny glowworms illuminating the darkness.
The glowworms are a real highlight of the tour, creating a serene and otherworldly experience. These little creatures light up the darkness with stunning blue-green bioluminescence, adding to the incredible beauty of this underground wonderland.
At the end of your visit to the Te Anau Glowworm Caves, you will have the option to take a guided forest walk and learn about the unique flora of the region. This tour is perfect for those seeking a unique and enchanting experience in the breathtaking natural surroundings of Te Anau.
FAQs about Te Anau: Everything Tourists Need to KnowAre you planning to visit Te Anau, one of New Zealand’s most charming towns? If so, you’re in the right place. In this post, we’ll answer some of the most frequently asked questions about Te Anau so you can better prepare for your trip. From weather and transportation, to activities and accommodations, we’ve got you covered.
1. What is Te Anau known for?Te Anau is known for being the Gateway to Fiordland National Park, which is home to the popular Milford Sound and Doubtful Sound. The town is situated on the shores of Lake Te Anau, New Zealand’s second-largest lake, surrounded by breathtaking scenery. Visitors come to Te Anau to explore the natural beauty of Fiordland National Park, which is a UNESCO World Heritage site.
2. What is the best time to visit Te Anau?The best time to visit Te Anau is during the summer, from December to February. The weather is warm and pleasant, perfect for hiking and outdoor activities. However, this is also peak tourist season, so expect crowds and book your accommodations and tours in advance. Spring (September to November) and autumn (March to May) are also nice times to visit, with fewer tourists and mild weather. Winter (June to August) is the off-season, with cooler temperatures and occasional snow.
3. How do I get to Te Anau?The nearest airport to Te Anau is Queenstown Airport, about a two-hour drive away. You can rent a car or take a shuttle from the airport to Te Anau. Another option is to take a bus from Queenstown or Invercargill, both of which have regular connections to Te Anau. If you’re coming from Milford Sound, you can take a scenic bus or boat tour that stops in Te Anau along the way.
4. What are the best things to do in Te Anau?There are plenty of things to do in Te Anau, both indoors and outdoors. Here are some of the most popular activities:
- Hiking: Te Anau is the starting point for many of the best hikes in Fiordland National Park, such as the Milford Track and Routeburn Track.
- Cruising: Take a boat tour of Lake Te Anau, Milford Sound or Doubtful Sound for a scenic and tranquil experience.
- Caving: Explore the underground wilderness of the Te Anau Glowworm Caves or the Kepler Track tunnels.
- Fishing: Cast your line in one of the many rivers and lakes in the area, such as the Waiau River or Lake Manapouri.
- Museums: Learn about the history and culture of the area in the Fiordland National Park Visitor Centre or the Te Anau Museum.
5. What are the best accommodations in Te Anau?Te Anau has plenty of accommodations to suit all budgets and preferences. Here are some top picks:
|Distinction Te Anau Hotel & Villas, Fiordland Lodge, Kingsgate Hotel Te Anau
|Bella Vista Motel Te Anau, Anchorage Motel Apartments, Parklands Motel
|Te Anau Lakefront Backpackers, YHA Te Anau, Explorer Motel & Hostel
6. Are there any food options in Te Anau?Yes, Te Anau has a variety of dining options, from casual cafes to fine dining restaurants. Some local specialties to try include venison, seafood, and lamb. Here are some recommended restaurants:
- Redcliff Cafe Bar: A cozy eatery with hearty breakfasts, lunches, and dinners.
- Olive Tree Cafe: A garden cafe serving organic and vegetarian fare, with homemade cakes and smoothies.
- The Fat Duck: A top-rated restaurant with a focus on New Zealand cuisine, such as beef, lamb, and seafood.
- Wilderness Cafe: A picturesque cafe with views of Lake Te Anau, serving coffee, tea, and light bites.