Southland
Air & Helicopter Tours

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Our most recommended Southland Air & Helicopter Tours

From Queenstown: Milford Sound Full-Day Trip by Plane & Boat

1. From Queenstown: Milford Sound Full-Day Trip by Plane & Boat

Combine a flight and a cruise on Milford Sound on this excursion from Queensland. Take in the area's outstanding natural beauty as you savor the sights from both air and water. Enjoy a pickup and transfer to the air hanger in Queenstown. Listen to informative commentary in English and marvel at the stunning views of lakes, mountains, and waterfalls on the 40-minute flight. Upon landing, transfer to the Milford Sound Boat Terminal. Board in Milford Sound and experience 2 hours onboard an intimate vessel with English commentary by your skipper, and complimentary tea and coffee. Cruise to the mouth of the Tasman Sea, while enjoying views of waterfalls and marine life like fur seals, dolphins, and penguins. Next, board your scenic flight back to Queenstown. Take a different flight path from your outbound flight as you admire the spectacular views of Fiordland National Park. After the 40-minute journey back to Queenstown, enjoy complimentary transfer back to your accommodation.

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Milford Sound Fiord Cruise & Helicopter Glacier Landing

2. Milford Sound Fiord Cruise & Helicopter Glacier Landing

Discover Milford Sound's stunning fjord from high in the air and on the water. Land in Milford and join an unforgettable fjord cruise past sheer cliffs and gushing waterfalls.Try to spot dolphins, seals, and adorable penguins. Then enjoy an exhilarating flight past spectacular rivers, valleys, and mountains with blue-green ice falls, and experience a glacier or mountain landing in the heart of Fiordland National Park. Today, many of the local landscapes can be recognized because of their use as film locations. You can even fly over where movies were filmed! The pilots regularly work with film production crews and are happy to share plenty of stories of life on the film set. Finally, for the photo opportunity of a lifetime, alight on a glacier and enjoy panoramic views. These highly experienced, well-known local pilots can’t wait to share with you their extensive knowledge and history of the area while showing you the best of New Zealand's amazing scenery. Please note that there may not be snow on the day of your flight depending on the season, especially during summer.

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Milford Sound: Fly | Cruise | Fly

3. Milford Sound: Fly | Cruise | Fly

Gaze down at the mountains and glaciers of Milford Sound as you take the flight of a lifetime onboard a fixed-wing aircraft. Savor the awe-inspiring scenery from your window seat as you enjoy an informative commentary from a knowledgeable local pilot. Soar over incredible features of the surrounding landscape, such as Coronet Peak skifield and Skippers Canyon. Absorb panoramic views over the Shotover River, the second-richest gold-bearing river in the world. Marvel at the sight of shimmering Lake Wakatipu below, as you fly along the Dart River Valley into World-Heritage-listed Mount Aspiring National Park. Enjoy an unforgettable experience as you jet across snow-clad peaks, the Olivine Ice Plateau, Mount Tutoko, and the Tutoko Glacier. Take in the breath-taking scenery of Fiordland National Park, the rugged West Coast, and the Tasman Sea, before descending into Milford Sound. Be amazed by the dramatic cliff faces and aerial views of cascading Stirling Falls, as you are led on a walk through beech forest and onboard a 1hr 45min cruise through the natural wonders of Milford Sound. Get the camera ready to snap the iconic Mitre Peak, standing 1692 meters above sea level. Look out for seal colonies, penguins, and dolphins from the open-air viewing deck, as you travel the full length of the fiord. Soak in the stunning landscape as you are greeted by your pilot for another memorable flight back across a World-Heritage-listed area to Queenstown.

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Te Anau: 40-Minute Doubtful Sound Scenic Seaplane Flight

4. Te Anau: 40-Minute Doubtful Sound Scenic Seaplane Flight

Take off from the Lakefront in Te Anau and explore the famous Doubtful Sound Fiordland in a way not many get the opportunity to do so aboard South Island New Zealand's only seaplane.  Fly with an experienced and personable local pilot who will conduct an informative commentary throughout your flight. Be able to listen and speak using your headset. Soar over the Doubtful Sound, which is known for being one of the deepest fiords and is long and winding with three distinct arms.  See breathtaking waterfalls and unspoiled scenery in its most dramatic form on a 40-minute flight with the upmost safety standards, operating in accordance with strict Civil Aviation New Zealand Rules.

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Te Anau: 30-Minute Fiordland National Park Scenic Flight

5. Te Anau: 30-Minute Fiordland National Park Scenic Flight

Sample the grandeur of the Fiordland scenery. This scenic helicopter flight is a short adventure into the untamed Kepler Mountains. You can see what lies beyond the Te Anau horizon, with a Te Anau helicopter scenic flight a must-do experience when visiting the area. Views of both the Kepler Track Great Walk and the Hidden Lakes will be spread out before you. You can fly over the local's backyard of the lower Kepler mountains, and can also receive a bird's eye view of the rural basin of Te Anau from a helicopter. During your tour, you will also make a landing at a mountain tarn so you can enjoy the vista and ruggedness of the Main Divide and breathe the crisp pure air of Fiordland.

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Doubtful Sound: Scenic Flight with 2 Landings

6. Doubtful Sound: Scenic Flight with 2 Landings

Experience the stunning Fiordland National Park from the sky. Soar high above the Iris Burn Valley and Lake Manapouri, also known as the "Lake of Many Islands". Spot the infamous West Arm Power Station on Lake Manapouri before flying up and over the Wilmot Pass into Doubtful Sound. This long and winding fiord is one of Fiordland’s deepest and is home to a number of stunning waterfalls. Your helicopter will detour into magical Campbell’s Kingdom, a beautiful hanging valley encompassing a lake and a waterfall. This is the stuff of fairytales. From here, take a peek at Bradshaw Sound before soaring over the Main Divide of the Southern Alps for a second remote landing at scenic Mount Kidd. Make sure you have the camera or phone well charged for this flight — you’ll want to revisit the scenes and landscapes you visit over and over again.

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Queenstown: Milford Sound Flight and Cruise

7. Queenstown: Milford Sound Flight and Cruise

Take flight a small luxury plane leaving Queenstown. Admire the awe-inspiring scenery from your very own window seat as you soar over Fiordland National Park, listening to the pilot's commentary. Landing at Milford Sound airport you will be escorted to the Cruise Terminal either by shuttle or 15 minute nature walk to meet your boat. Enjoy 2 hours of spectacular scenery and wildlife on the Gem of the Sound, learn all about the history of the area from the skipper as he skillfully pulls the boat underneath waterfalls and right up to the base of famous Mitre Peak. Your pilots will meet you off the cruise at the Terminal and take you back to the awaiting plane for your return to Queenstown. Your complimentary shuttle will drop you back to your hotel with plenty of time to enjoy the legendary dining scene.

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Milford Sound Flight and Cruise

8. Milford Sound Flight and Cruise

Enjoy an exclusive sightseeing tour to the very best locations in Queenstown and the South Island of New Zealand. Discover New Zealand’s magnificent fiords, native forests, and glaciers, as well as the island's stunning native bird life, seals, penguins, and dolphins. Milford Sound is situated on the West Coast of the South Island of New Zealand. It is a world-renowned area of extraordinary beauty. Milford Sound is a true fiord, which measures 7.5 miles (12 kilometers) long and is up to 1,050 feet (320 meters) deep. The fiord receives an average yearly rainfall of approximately 300 inches (7.5 meters) because it is situated on one of the world’s most formidable coastlines, which is subject to rapidly changing weather conditions. The weather is famous for its ability to deteriorate or improve within a very short period of time. These dramatic weather patterns result in some of nature’s most amazing scenery transformations, especially when viewed from above.

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Milford Sound: 1.5-Hour Helicopter Tour with Two Landings

9. Milford Sound: 1.5-Hour Helicopter Tour with Two Landings

Experience the breathtaking scenery of Milford Sound on a roundtrip scenic helicopter flight from Queenstown. Land in Milford Sound and also experience the thrill of a landing in a remote alpine location. After pickup from your central Queenstown hotel, it's a short drive to the airport helicopter base. Check in and meet the friendly crew who will ensure you make the most of your aerial experience. Take to the skies and marvel at the epic scale of the Southern Alps and The Divide en route to Milford Sound. Your experienced pilot will share local insights and point out areas of interest. You'll fly over secluded alpine lakes, sky-high waterfalls, lush pristine rainforest, ancient glaciers, and rugged peaks. Touch down in Milford Sound to enjoy 15 minutes on the ground to admire the majestic fjord. You will also land in a remote alpine location with a high likelihood of snow. Your scenic tour concludes with the return flight to the helicopter base and transfer back to your hotel.

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From Te Anau: Scenic Flight to Doubtful and Milford Sound

10. From Te Anau: Scenic Flight to Doubtful and Milford Sound

Soar high above Lake Manapouri and deep into the heart of Doubtful Sound, also known as the "Sound of Silence" due to its remote location. The first landing is in Campbell’s Kingdom, a unique hanging valley suspended amidst mountains. See the picturesque valley that has its own waterfall and lake. From here, fly above several more fiords before arriving at Milford Sound and touring Fiordland’s most famous destination. A Milford Sound scenic flight is the best way to see all the fiord has to offer, as you will be amazed by the sheer granite cliffs and inky blue water. The second landing is at Lake Quill, high above Milford itself and is located at the head of the spectacular Sutherland Falls, one of the highest waterfalls in the Southern Hemisphere.

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Other Sightseeing Options in Southland

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What people are saying about Southland

Sensational experience of a lifetime. Highly recommended. The scenic flight to Milford Sounds was exceptional & a must see. The cruise on the sounds was such a special time with a very informative commentary. The sounds is certainly the 8th wonder of the world & every kiwi needs to visit this sacred part of our beautiful country. The flight back to Queenstown was yet another priceless experience. Can’t say enough about this experience. The extra cost for the scenic flight was worth every cent & I will be raving about our trip to the Milford sounds for many years to come. We went well prepared. Scout moto, “Be Prepared”. Take: Warm clothes. Raincoat/windbreaker, Towel & insect repellent. Also Take your lunch as there is limited food outlets at the sounds. A beanie is better then a cap, depending on the wind & a light backpack is better then a bag. Full phone/camera battery with plenty of space for pics & vids. (I needed a bit of extra charge. Too many vids. No internet reception.

Sam our hotel pick up driver arrived at our hotel on time and was polite and engaged throughout our driver. I also believe Sam was also the employee I spoke to the previous day as our original booking was cancelled due to weather. Sam managed to ensure all three of us were able to experience Milford Sound together the very next day Dean our flight pilot was fantastic! He acted as a tour guide and pilot all in one giving us information as we flew above. Dean always had a smile on his face and tried to keep the flight seating fair

2nd go at this flight. Bad weather last year meant we missed out. Pays to have a spare day if you can. This flight was amazing although Milford had a bit of low cloud obscuring the view. I’d recommend the fly in boat trip if you really want to see Milford. This flight focussed more on the out of reach small mountain glaciers up towards Mt Aspiring. Beautiful remote otherwise impossible to see parts of the Southern Alps of Aotearoa.

Very pleasant guides, very helpful and knowledgeable. Cruising with Mitre Peak Cruises couldn’t be better. Tea and coffee drinks on board to enjoy which was a surprise to us. Tour was not hurried , and very enjoyable

Beginning to end it was really an experience to remember. I can't recommend enough.