The Te Anau Lodge makes for a perfect place to stay while exploring the Fiordlands. Te Anau is a couple of hours' drive from the Milford Sound, but offers plenty of nearby diversions, including the Te Anau Glowworm Caves and a theater that shows the the celebrated Ata Whenua documentary film.
The lodge itself, run by friendly George, is a former convent (and your room might come equipped with its own nun's habit). The lake is just a five-minute walk away.
By AFAR Traveler, AFAR Contributor
Vintage biplane flight over the fjords and mountains of New Zealand
Not actually from Te Anau Lodge but you book through them. Adam is a fun pilot who will give you the full skinny on his vintage De Havilland and get you close to everything around Te Anou.