Milford Sound might be one of the few destinations that gets better in the so-called 'off-season'.
The torrents, and scenic rivulets are world famous. Of course, chipper guides will tell you that the Bowen and Stirling falls only get better with rain.
It's known as the wettest place in New Zealand, but - should you be hoping for blue skies - the traditional off-peak season through midwinter is the least-soggy. In June and July the precipitation tops out at 420mm of rain a month, half of the monthly average for December.
Don't forget to pack a coat.
As one of New Zealand's biggest natural draw cards for international tourists, it takes more than a bit of rain to put off the bus-loads of visitors which arrive via the State Highway 94 pass daily.
However this year operators have reported a drought in tourists. Cruise company Real Journeys has reported a 75 per cent drop in visitors since New Zealand's borders closed and the taps were turned off for international tourism.
CEO Stephen England-Hall which recently took the reins of parent company Wayfare, has come up with a way to lure Kiwis back.
From 1 April, Real Journeys is giving away one thousand $1 fares to New Zealanders.
"Jumping aboard a Milford Sound Cruise is the best way to appreciate the scale of the 'eighth wonder of the world'," says England-Hall. Normally, $69 the two hour scenic cruise takes in the sights on a two-hour return sailing into Anita Bay and the Tasman Sea.
Operating three ships - the Milford Haven, the Milford Mariner and the MV Sinbad - the company offer itineraries from two hour laps of the sound to overnight adventures on the water.
Just as epic is the "adventure to get here," he says. The three-hour drive From Te Anau via the M94 and Homer Tunnel.
See realjourneys.co.nz/milford-no-joke for details. Tickets go on sale from 1 April until 6 April or until sold out, for sailings between 1 April to 30 September 2021
The adventure before the adventure: On the road to Milford
The lakeside town is the starting out point for many Fiordland journeys, and the perfect place to top up on info, supplies and waterproof kit.
An eons-old glacial valley is a marvel, full of alpine meadows, providing a taste of the wilderness to come.
The Mirror Lakes
A reflective tarn that is a welcome pit stop for mountain photos.
A giant glacial plain with mountain views and studio and campsite accommodation, for those wanting to break the journey in a scenic location.
A glacial fed creek that pours from the Fiordland ice fields.
The Homer Tunnel
Passing from one side of the Alpine ridge to the other the 1.2km tunnel was carved by hand.
Hairpins snake down the valley towards Milford and the west coast sounds. Notoriously unstable, there's no stopping on the roadside but plenty of sweeping, driving views.
A short drive from the Cleddau Valley, the high-force waterfalls of the Chasm are across an epic rope bridge track.
The most recognisable view in New Zealand, Mitre Peak welcomes visitors to the coastal inlets where the road runs out.