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Southern Discoveries Convert Catamaran to Amphibious Vehicle

Milford Sound’s original cruise operator, Southern Discoveries, is backing a new vision for tourism in the region with the conversion of its Spirit of Queenstown catamaran to an amphibious vehicle.

The 28 metre catamaran, which services daily sightseeing cruises across Queenstown’s Lake Wakatipu, was pulled off the water today to begin work on the improvements.

Southern Discoveries CEO Tim Hunter says the amphibious version of Spirit of Queenstown will allow the company to offer a twin lake cruise package encompassing Lake Wakatipu and Lake Te Anau.

“Our Spirit of Queenstown Scenic Cruise already goes further than any other cruise in Queenstown, taking visitors to the remote shores of Mt Nicholas High Country Farm. From here, it’s a relatively short drive for our amphibious vehicle through beautiful high country to Lake Te Anau,” says Hunter.

The company is making a significant investment in the conversion, which includes an all-wheel drive drivetrain, and is confident that there is a strong market for its twin lake cruise package.

“Today’s travellers want to go further, get closer and discover more of the regions they visit. We’re helping them to explore deeper into our high country, while experiencing a truly unimaginable mode of transport,” says Hunter.

Southern Discoveries will also offer a one-way twin lake cruise connection, allowing customers to disembark in Te Anau and meet one of the company’s coach trips to Milford Sound.

The conversion is expected to be completed in time for the next summer season beginning 1 October 2019. Further information and tickets for the twin lakes cruise package are available at

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