Lake Marian is and extremely beautiful alpine lake a great hike on the drive into Milford Sound. If you hike this on a warm day, it's not a bad place to go for a (very cold) swim.

The track starts soon after the turnoff onto Hollyford Rd off the Milford Highway. The track begins with a bridge crossing over a river and then soon reached Marian Falls. From the falls the trail climbs steeply through forest until the lake. The lake is a beautiful place to spend several hours and then return via the same track. The track is covered in roots and rocks and requires care as to avoid falling.

A quicker version of the hike would be a quick 20 minute walk to the falls.

Pack List

  • Sturdy hiking boots
  • Water
  • Snacks
  • Camera
  • Bathing suit (if you would like to swim in the lake)
  • Warm clothing
  • Bug spray
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RT Distance 3 Miles
Elevation Gain 1312.3 Feet
Activities Chillin, Photography, Swimming, Hiking
Skill Level Intermediate
Season Spring, Summer, Autumn
Trail Type Out-and-Back
Features
Easy Parking
Forest
Lake
Scenic
Waterfall

Reviews

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Overall rating: 

Amazing views, especially for such a quick hike

Did this hike in a morning, with the most difficult part being finding a ride to the trailhead from Milford Sound. It has great infrastructure, with stunning woodwork on some of the bridges and a pretty great hanging bridge to start the trail off. The lake is gorgeous, but definitely left me wanting to hike up the surrounding rock walls. Without a doubt suggest this one for a calm day or on your way into the depths of the park from Te Anau.

One of my favorite short hikes ever!

After we kayaked the Milford Sound, we were talking to a worker at the hostel we were staying at for short hike recommendations... and boy, was this a perfect suggestion! From elevation gains, to climbing up tree roots, and amazing views, the opening to Lake Marian was absolutely climatic! My friends and I were in awe and lucky had the place to ourselves. We tired to go swimming. It was too cold. Lake Marian has definitely not seen the last of me!

Everything New Zealand Can Offer In A Single Hike

Lake Marian was an afterthought addition to my New Zealand hike itinerary. Very glad it was added in since it is now one of my favorite hikes ever. A lush green forest opening up into an alpine lake- everything you'd want - and expect - from New Zealand all wrapped up into one.


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Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures. Be aware of local regulations and don't damage these amazing places for the sake of a photograph. Learn More

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