Make your way to the operator’s base in Franz Josef to meet your guide and get geared up with proper equipment for your 3-hour valley walk to Franz Josef Glacier, which requires a basic level of fitness.
After a brief bus ride to the outskirts of the glacier, follow your guide on foot during a valley walk through a forest and up alongside the Waiho River. The hike along the rocky riverbed takes you via exclusive trails amid a magnificent alpine landscape en route to the glacier’s rapidly changing terminal face.
Learn from your guide about the glaciology and natural history of Franz Josef, also known by its Maori name as Ka Roimata o Hine Hukatere, and hear about the imposing giant’s path of retreat. Close to the terminal face, you'll be rewarded with impressive views of the marbled blue ice and deep crevasses.
Finish with the return hike through the valley back to the minivan and transport to the base.