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Te Anau Water activities

Our most recommended Te Anau Water activities

Te Anau: Glowworm Caves Guided Tour

1. Te Anau: Glowworm Caves Guided Tour

Experience a mysterious underground world of rushing water before drifting in darkness beneath the luminous shimmer of hundreds of glowworms.  Your trip to the Te Anau Glowworm Caves begins with a cruise to the western shores of Lake Te Anau. At the entry to the caves, view the informative displays and learn about this geological wonder before you head underground. On the tour of the caves, your friendly guide will point out the highlights and share their knowledge of the caves and its history. This underground world is astonishingly beautiful. The cave are 12,000 years old which by geological standards is still very young and they are still being carved out by the force of the river that flows through them. The result is a twisting network of limestone passages filled with sculpted rock, whirlpools and a roaring underground waterfall. Deep inside the caves, beyond the roar of the water, you will be taken by small boat into a silent hidden grotto inhabited by thousands of glowworms, unique to New Zealand. In the subterranean darkness, they produce a glittering display that is nothing short of extraordinary.

Queenstown: Milford Sound Coach & Cruise Full-Day Trip

2. Queenstown: Milford Sound Coach & Cruise Full-Day Trip

Enjoy a fun and leisurely day trip to admire the glacial features, wild flora and fauna, and picturesque backdrops of the world-famous fiord at Milford Sound. Start with pickup for the bus journey to Te Anau. Your driver will share their local knowledge as you stop along the way to see spectacular scenery. Marvel at views of waterfalls, wildlife, and the rainforest. Soak up the sights from any of the three indoor and outdoor viewing decks during your cruise and join your jovial crew at the bow as you nose under Stirling Falls for a free shower in some of the world's freshest water.  Benefit from complimentary tea service is available for the entire cruise and espresso coffee, snacks cakes. Additional drinks can be purchased from onboard cafe / bar.

Fiordland: Jet Boat & Nature Walk Experience from Te Anau

3. Fiordland: Jet Boat & Nature Walk Experience from Te Anau

Begin your adventure in the heart of Te Anau, a short walk from most accommodation. After check-in, rest at a picnic table to enjoy free WiFi and a charging station to make sure all your devices are good to go. Hop on the bus for a short ride through local farmland to the Queen's Reach boat launch on the Waiau River.  Gear up with spray jackets and life vests before an exhilarating ride down the Waiau River. Lined by ancient beech tree forest this river is featured in The Lord of the Rings as the Anduin River. Contrast high-speed spins with pauses along the river in some amazingly tranquil places. Spot some trout in the crystal-clear water and have time to take plenty of photos. Learn about the area's unique environment and fascinating history from your knowledgeable local guide. Emerge onto the breath-taking Lake Manapouri, surrounded by glacier-carved mountains. Experience a sense of wonderment as you sit in awe of their beauty and grandeur. Go ashore to explore the ancient surrounds on a short walk.

Lake Te Anau: 3-Hour Boat Cruise with Guided Walk

4. Lake Te Anau: 3-Hour Boat Cruise with Guided Walk

Your tour will begin when you arrive at the historic wharf of Lake Te Anau 5, where you'll be greeted by your crew and welcomed aboard “Faith”. You'll then receive a personalized briefing about safety onboard the ship and what to expect during the cruise.  Once onboard, you’ll be free to roam around and your crew will offer you a drink and a chat during the 40-minute journey to the Hidden Lakes wharf. During this time, you’ll learn about the history of your cruise ship, the vessel’s journey from Scotland in the 1980s and its Royal Navy service during WW2. Upon arrival at the Hidden Lakes, experience a guided walking tour of Fiordland National Park of roughly 45 minutes, and learn about the surrounding flora and fauna from your guide. Once back at the wharf, enjoy a selection of canapés and desserts in the calm of the cove. Finally, sit back and enjoy the journey home or visit the engine room to take a turn behind the wheel.

From Te Anau: Milford Sound Tour with Cruise and Lunch

5. From Te Anau: Milford Sound Tour with Cruise and Lunch

Take a guided tour by comfortable minibus to explore the natural beauty of Milford Sound and the surrounding area. Your tour includes a sightseeing cruise, a picnic lunch, and plenty of scenic stops along the way. Meet your guide in Te Anau and drive along the lakeside, making a stop at Te Anau Downs to soak in the scenery. Enter the Fiordland National Park and visit Eglinton Valley, to admire the landscape carved by an ancient glacier. 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. Keep a look out for local wildlife, including kea, the world’s largest alpine parrot. Enter Homer Tunnel and learn this history of this hand-built tunnel, before arriving at Milford Sound. Board the boat for a sightseeing cruise and see impressive views of Mitre Peak. Back on dry land, take a bush walk through The Chasm and snap photos at Pop's View Lookout, on the return journey to Te Anau.

Lake Te Anau: 3-Hour Scenic Cruise and Walk with Morning Tea

6. Lake Te Anau: 3-Hour Scenic Cruise and Walk with Morning Tea

Begin your tour at the historic wharf of Lake Te Anau, where you'll be greeted by your crew and welcomed aboard. After a safety briefing and check-in, you'll be free to explore the ship. Enjoy some light refreshments on the scenic 40-minute journey to the Hidden Lakes wharf.   Upon arrival, leave the ship for a guided 45-minute walk through the Fiordland National Park. Learn about the surrounding flora and fauna from your guide. Once back at the ship, enjoy a delicious morning tea with a selection of canapes and desserts in the peaceful cove. Then sit back, relax and enjoy the journey back to Lake Te Anau.

Te Anau: River Jet Boat and Bike Ride Tour with Local Guide

7. Te Anau: River Jet Boat and Bike Ride Tour with Local Guide

Begin your adventure in the heart of Te Anau, a short walk from most accommodation. After check-in, rest at a picnic table to enjoy free WiFi and a charging station to make sure all your devices are good to go. Hop on the bus for a short ride through local farmland to the Queen's Reach boat launch on the Waiau River.  Gear up with spray jackets and life vests before heading down the Waiau River. Lined by ancient forest, this river is featured in The Lord of the Rings as the Anduin River. Contrast high-speed spins with pauses along the river in some amazingly tranquil places. Spot some trout in the crystal-clear water and have time to take plenty of photos. Learn about the area's unique environment and fascinating history from your knowledgeable local guide.  Emerge onto the breathtaking Lake Manapouri - named NZ's most beautiful lake - surrounded by glacier-carved mountains. Experience a sense of wonderment as you sit in awe of their beauty and grandeur - and perhaps take a sip... Go ashore to explore the ancient surrounds on a short walk through Fiordland National Park's lush beech forest. Stretch your legs before getting back on board to head up river with more fun, laughs and banter along the way. Back at the boat ramp, skip the bus ride back to town, and instead bike your way along Te Anau's Lake2Lake Cycle Trail. Take your time, stop for a picnic lunch and enjoy a bit of exercise as you make your way 11 kilometres on the edge of the upper section of the river and around the bottom of Lake Te Anau before finishing back where it all started.

Te Anau: Evening Scenic Cruise

8. Te Anau: Evening Scenic Cruise

Glide over scenic lake Te Anau with this Fiordland Historic Cruises group tour. Enjoy the snow-capped peaks reflected in the pristine lake while sipping complimentary drinks and savoring tasty canapés. Anchor in an idyllic sheltered cove, and explore the historic ship Faith. Listen as your local crew shares the facinating story of the ship with you. Learn more about the stunning scenery you’re seeing. Take some time to bask in being in some of the most remote and untouched land in New Zealand. Get plenty of room, as this company caters to small groups of passengers. Hear personalized commentaries from the crew. Get the chance to help raise the sails and steer this classic ship over the lake.

Other Sightseeing Options in Te Anau

Want to discover all there is to do in Te Anau? Click here for a full list.

What people are saying about Te Anau

My husband and I booked a 9.40am day trip from Queenstown to Milford Sound return. The bus driver had lots of stories about Mouri heritage and was informative about the scenery we drove through. There were plenty of stops along the way for photos. The cruise was spectacular and lunch provided was very good. It was quite late when we returned to Queenstown but thoroughly enjoyed our day

Very well organized tour, super knowledgeable guides, tour was exactly on time as described. Tour through the caves and especially the boat ride through the dark part with lots of glow worms is an absolute highlight!

Incredible experience seeing the glow worms in the cave! Ryan our guide was great!

Great company to work with great walk in National Park fun bike ride back

Very Friendly People... Great Instruction... Excellent Facilities...