This is one place where a helicopter trip is a must - taking you where otherwise you could not go. Avoid the standard off-the-shelf 'Milford Sound' trips and if budget allows go on one of our private charters where a local legend (25,000+ flying hours) will show you their secret and favourite places.
Rather than just sightseeing, include a top grade activity into your heli-itinerary - from wild food barbecues to finding pounamu (greenstone, jade), snorkelling for crayfish and paua (lobster and abalone), wildlife spotting, wildlife conservation, hiking, photography etc etc
And on land there are award winning wineries, hikes, jetboating (private rather than the mass tourism obvious ones), time on enormous private mountain estates, sightseeing where there arent people', fly fishing in undisturbed water, buggy riding, horse riding and the list goes on and on.
Accommodation is also plentiful although now booked further and further in advance. Even a year in advance you're not always certain to get your first choice around New Year. Luckily we have quite a few unknown places up our sleeves too.