Franz Josef

Franz Josef, West Coast, New Zealand

Franz Josef GlacierFranz Josef Glacier

The Franz Josef Glacier is a 12 km long glacier located close to the Franz Josef township and
 together with the Fox Glacier 20 km to the south, forms part of a World Heritage Site.

Franz Josef townshipFranz Josef township is a tourist destination, located
approximately 5 km away from the face of the glacier.

Surrounded by dramatic landscape and beautiful scenery,
combine this with good West Coast hospitality and
Franz Josef is a great place to stay.
Franz Josef has numerous accommodation options to suit
every budget, restaurants. Also a small heliport.

Adventure activities include scenic flights over the glaciers,
heli-hiking and guided glacier tours.
There are also several good walking tracks around Franz Josef.

Franz Josef
To stand at the terminal face of a massive frozen river and feel the weight and might of this natural phenomenon is a truly humbling. To then strap crampons to your boots and climb upon the glacier and explore its crevasses and folds is an incredible experience. Glacier Country is understandably one of the most popular destinations on the West Coast.
Outside of Argentina, New Zealand is the only country where glaciers extend their icy tongues into the temperate rainforest and grind to a halt only 250 metres above sea level.
Government geologist Julius von Haast named Franz Josef Glacier in 1863 after the then Austro-Hungarian Emperor. Franz Josef is a hive of activity year-round. There are helicopters buzzing overhead, buses coming and going and throngs of sightseers browsing around the town and enjoying the many fine restaurants and cafes as well as the excellent information centre, which has models of the region and loads of information about the glacier, it’s history, geology and physiography. Two glacier guiding companies operate out of Franz Josef as well as a number of helicopter and fixed-wing scenic flight companies that will take you high above the mountains and can even land on the upper reache
of the glacier for a truly incredible natural experience in white and blue.

Franz JosefView of Mt Cook