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.
South Island ▷ Fiordland ▷ Milford Sound - Fiordland National Park
Showing 13 reviews of 29.
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.
Nicole and Timm
Impressive stone formation, it is incredible how water has shaped the rocks after all these years. Easy walk.
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Eveet De Beleir
Nice little walk with waterfalls. We were not that impressed but it is nice to stretch your legs.
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.
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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.
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.
10 minute track, shorter walk than I anticipated.
Do not miss these amazing waterfalls and special stones.
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!!
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.
Amazing scenery loved it. A must do on the way to Milford sound
Turn right at the donation box! Little path to a clear lake to jump in! Beautiful scenery. Very cold but worth it.
Great spot with dramatic views - good experience.
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 😍