Navigation Menu
Photograph Lupines at Milford Sound, New Zealand

Photograph Lupines at Milford Sound, New Zealand

Photograph and blog post by Susan Gan, Australia

Milford Sound, Milford Road (State Highway 94), Fiordland National Park, New Zealand.

Why is photographing Lupines at Milford Sound on the Snap Spotz: photographer’s bucket list?

If you tell any New Zealander that you are visiting their country to photograph the Lupines, they will look at you like you are crazy. To them, Lupines are weeds that the infest creek beds but to a photographer they are a dream come true.

Around every corner is a new surprise in store with fields of beautiful pinks, blues and purple flowers of every different shade.

Lupines on the road to Milford Sound – Susan Gan

When is the best time to photograph Lupines at Milford Sound?

The peak season for Lupines on the South Island of New Zealand is November to December.

Where is the best spot to photograph Lupines at Milford Sound?

Lupines can be found along the edges of most of the lakes and riverbeds in Mackenzie Country on the South Island. You are certain to find them on the drive from Wanaka to Lake Tekapo.

Lake Tekapo is a popular tourist destination for photographing the Lupines with busloads of tourists wearing Lupine-matching clothing of pinks, blues and purples swarming everywhere in search of the perfect Instagram photo.

In my opinion, the field of Lupines on the road to Milford Sound was as good or better than Lake Tekapo and it had the added bonus of having minimal tourists.

Traveling down the Te Anau-Milford Highway towards Milford Sound, the flowers are easily visible on the left side of the road after you have passed through Eglington Valley.

Tips or recommendations to photograph Lupines Milford Sound

There are several safe places to pull off the road including several camping grounds. You should wear old shoes as you will need to either cross the creek or walk through long grass to get the best photos.

The closest town to Milford Sound it Te Anau. Milford Sound is approximately 5 hours drive from Queenstown, a 2 hour 30 minute drive from Te Anau or a 40 minute flight from Queenstown.

Milford Sound sits within Fiordland National Park in the southwest of New Zealand’s South Island. The park is part of Te Wahipounamu, a UNESCO World Heritage site. Milford Sound is the jewel of Fiordland National Park – a hidden secret waiting to be discovered. Despite its name, Milford Sound is actually a fiord, not a sound.

Lupinus polyphyllus. 

In New Zealand, where it is known as the Russell lupin, Lupinus polyphyllus is classed as an invasive species and covers large areas next to roadsides, pastures and riverbeds, especially in the Canterbury region. It is documented as being first naturalised in 1958 and it has been suggested that tour bus drivers deliberately spread seeds of the plant to promote colourful roadside vegetation in areas which some tourists may consider to be rather drab. The plant threatens indigenous species especially when it invades the braided river beds in the South Island.


Meet the photographer

Susan Gan, Australia | Thrifty after 50 and Snap Spotz

Susan Gan | Australia

Camera Settings

CameraCanon 6D
LensEF 24-70mm f/2.8L II USM
Camera Settings1/90 sec at f/16, ISO 400
Tripod, filters, wireless remoteNo
Photo editing toolAdobe Lightroom
Resources / Apps for preparationInternet research

Save this Pin to your photo bucket list.

Snap Spotz Pin - Lupines at Milford Sound

Have you decided to add photographing Lupines at Milford Sound to your photography bucket list? Leave a comment below.

    1 Comment

  1. Love these colors.

Post a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Snap Spotz Logo

Subscribe To Our Newsletter

Yes, I want to receive updates from Snap Spotz so I can grow my photography bucket list.

You have Successfully Subscribed!

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This