Dancing on ice in sub-tropical jungle: hiking on Franz Josef Glacier (with video)

When you’re driving along the West Coast of New Zealand’s South Island and you have just enough time to do one big thing, make it hiking on Franz Josef Glacier with a guided glacier tour.

The Franz Josef Glacier is also known as Ka Roimata o Hinehukatere in Maori and is situated in the Westland National Park. You can take guided tours of varying lengths on the glacier and get to see crevasses, waterfalls, stunning views and the occasional alpine parrot, the kea.

Hiking on Franz Josef Glacier: interview with a glacier guide

Come join me on my half-day guided glacier tour, watch the interview with our guide Kevin and see for yourself what awaits on fantastic Franz Josef!

Franz Josef Glacier is one of the definite highlights of the West Coast, perched between the Southern Alps and the Tasman Sea. It’s one of the world’s three sub-tropical glaciers – it’s so close to sea level that it’s surrounded by rainforest!

You can walk up to see the terminal face of the glacier without a tour guide by taking the path up to the safety barrier from the car park 5km outside of Franz Josef township. However, to get anywhere near it and onto the actual ice you need to join a guided tour, and as you can see from the video, it’s definitely worth it!

What’s your favourite West Coast experience? Share your experiences in the comments section below!

Christina Hegele

About the author: Christina Hegele runs Sandal Road, a blog on her favourite destinations. It just so happened that 95% turned out to be about New Zealand. Follow Christina and her blog on Twitter, like her blog on Facebook, and subscribe to her Youtube channel. Alternatively, subscribe to her email newsletter at the top right of this blog.

More Posts - Twitter - Facebook

  2 comments for “Dancing on ice in sub-tropical jungle: hiking on Franz Josef Glacier (with video)

  1. 10 July, 2011 at 07:10

    Good, helpful video. Glacier walking is such fun, isn’t it? We do that heaps here in Norway as well. Also, I’ve wondered why the glacier is named Franz Josef – thanks for the clarification. Oh, and cute kea 🙂

    • Christina
      22 September, 2011 at 14:15

      Thanks, Sophie! I’ll have to do a glacier hike in Norway one day. I’m sure my friend in Oslo would be keen, too!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.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


%d bloggers like this: