The Chasm

The Chasm - Milford Road - Fiordland National Park

The Chasm

Milford Road - Fiordland National Park


34 Rankers Reviews

28 Face-to-Face

18 Milford Sound - Fiordland National Park

Your Nature Guide

Marios Gavalas's avatar

Marios Gavalas

Author And Researcher

Nau mai, haere mai

Nau mai, haere mai

I'm Marios, delivering the best of Aotearoa's nature walks to your device.

I've personally walked hundreds of New Zealand's tracks and spent months in libraries uncovering interesting information on New Zealand/Aotearoa. And you'll find a slice of that research on this page - enjoy!


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Water flowing down the Chasm
It could be dangerous if you fall in......
Imagine this after a good rain!


400 m return | 20 minutes return

Swirl holes are created in chunks of solid rock, like here in the granites beds of the North Branch of the Cleddau River. As there are few fractures and cracks in the smooth bedrock, the erosive power of the water is translated into these unusually rounded indentations. These are formed by stones being eddied around a small depression by the force of moving water, then enlarged in a positive feedback mechanism as the holes increase in size.


The bigger the rain, the bigger the river. Best at when it is chucking it down Fiordland style and has been doing so for 12 hours beforehand.

Visit early in the morning or late in the evening, when the midday pulse of tourists on the coach to/from Queenstown are not there.


The Chasm is well signposted 10 km before Milford Sound. Take care in the large car park, as on busy days there can be up to 15 coaches jostling for position.


This well used track has been concreted and overlain with boardwalks and is about the most sanitised of all the Milford Road walks. It has been especially designed so that coach loads of unseasoned walkers cannot slip or break a heel and find some authority to bemoan for not providing a safe walking environment. Bring a buggy if you have one to plough through the hoards. Regardeless of whether you have a baby to put in it or not.

The bridge over The Chasm is especially crowded.


Feature Value Info


DOC Fiordland

Central government organisation


South IslandFiordlandMilford Sound - Fiordland National Park


  • Walking
  • Free


Showing 13 reviews of 30.

Andrew Hammond's avatar

Andrew Hammond


Ranking: 8/10

Nice short walk on well maintained path. Very impressive sigh and worth a stop. Might even be able to get a coffee from the coffee van in the car park.

Reviewed over 2 years ago

Raphaele's avatar


Ranking: 7/10

Easy walk. However, it is very busy with tourists and based on the praise the site received in brochures and stuff I expected a lot more from it. Still a nice opportunity to stretch your legs and observe the impressive fjordland nature.

Reviewed over 3 years ago

Nicole and Timm's avatar

Nicole and Timm


Ranking: 10/10

Impressive stone formation, it is incredible how water has shaped the rocks after all these years. Easy walk.

Reviewed over 4 years ago

Eveet De Beleir's avatar

Eveet De Beleir


Ranking: 7/10

Nice little walk with waterfalls. We were not that impressed but it is nice to stretch your legs.

Reviewed almost 5 years ago and experienced in December 2016

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Patricia Trigo's avatar

Patricia Trigo


Ranking: 10/10

Fantastic!! A short and easy walk where you could see a rock chasm formed by the rushing of the water. Also you could see falls around the walk.

Reviewed about 5 years ago and experienced in October 2016

Anna's avatar



Ranking: 6/10

Easy walk to the river where you can see different rocks sculpted by the river. Very busy with tourists. Lots of Kea birds in the carpark.

Reviewed about 5 years ago and experienced in November 2016

Connor Hormell's avatar

Connor Hormell

United States

Ranking: 8/10

Great little walk but one of the main buss stops for the tourist busses. If you can time it right, it is great. Still if the busses are there it is still worth it. Amazing water feature you cannot see anywhere else.

Reviewed over 5 years ago and experienced in November 2016

Christian Bobsu's avatar

Christian Bobsu


Ranking: 6/10

10 minute track, shorter walk than I anticipated.

Reviewed over 5 years ago and experienced in March 2016

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Coralie Dhenin's avatar

Coralie Dhenin


Ranking: 8/10

Do not miss these amazing waterfalls and special stones.

Reviewed almost 6 years ago and experienced in March 2016

Molly Bogeberg's avatar

Molly Bogeberg

United States

Ranking: 8/10

We were unsure about this short walk as the parking lot was full of tour busses, but we were rewarded with an amazing sight. It was worth it to brave the crowds!!

Reviewed almost 6 years ago and experienced in March 2016

Katrina's avatar


New Zealand

Ranking: 10/10

Only a 15 minute loop walk. The Chasm itself is mesmerising and we spent a good 10 minutes staring into the abyss, despite the rain. The highlight though, is the cheeky Kea at the carpark! Do not feed them - they will pose for photos without a bribe.

Reviewed almost 6 years ago and experienced in February 2016

donald  pobke's avatar

donald pobke


Ranking: 9/10

Amazing scenery loved it. A must do on the way to Milford sound

Reviewed almost 6 years ago

Nicole's avatar



Ranking: 9/10

Turn right at the donation box! Little path to a clear lake to jump in! Beautiful scenery. Very cold but worth it.

Reviewed about 6 years ago

DOC Managed

Thanks to all the good people working for the NZ Department of Conservation - for all your hard work - making NZ more beautiful, accessable and healthy! Cheers 😍

Cymen Crick's avatar

Cymen Crick