On this Franz Josef Glacier helicopter tour and hike, land atop the glacier and explore ice caves and pinnacles with a small group. Soar above New Zealand’s Southern Alps during a scenic flight, then grab your crampons and make your way through dramatic ice formations during a moderately difficult hike. After your return flight, rejuvenate with a complimentary blissful soak at Glacier Hot Pools. Numbers are limited to 11 to ensure personalized attention from your expert guide.
Franz Josef Glacier helicopter tour and walk
Take in beautiful glacier views from the air by helicopter
Explore the ice with your guide and gain insight into the geological forces at play
Marvel at the stunning landscape on your moderately difficult hike
Relax after your glacier walk with a soak in the hot pools
Tour includes all hiking equipment
Why Travelers Choose This Tour
Travel longer and further than most glacier hikes with hours on the ice.
Meet your guide at the centrally located tour base in Franz Josef at one of several morning departure times available. You’re given a safety orientation and provided with protective gear including Gore-tex jacket, trousers, woolen hat, gloves and leather boots with crampons in preparation for your Franz Joseph Glacier tour.
Then hop into the helicopter for stunning aerial views over New Zealand's scenic Southern Alps and surrounding area—a magnificent sight to behold. After a brief flight, experience a gentle yet thrilling landing atop the mighty Franz Josef Glacier.
Ice axe in hand, set off on foot with your guide past ice formations that protrude alongside ice caves, pinnacles, and seracs. Explore the dramatic landscape as you hike past mazes of ice and deep blue crevasses along the glacier. With insight from your guide, understand the various geological forces at play in this otherworldly environment.
At the conclusion of your glacier hike, return to Franz Josef by helicopter and unwind with a rejuvenating soak at the Glacier Hot Pools, situated in a rain forest haven at the edge of town. Relax your muscles in the soothing hot pools, which are fed by pure glacier water—an ideal way to complete your half-day adventure.
Franz Josef Glacier Guides
This is where you need to check in for the Glacier Tour. This is also where you check in for the Glacier Hot Pools
Trip was cancelled due to weather. The torrential rain coupled with thunder and lightning meant all activities cancelled. Franj Joseph Staff were great and we were offered lots of alternatives. Waiting to do trip in Queenstown.
Worth Spending the money. Only downfall was the hike hasnt been tracked in 5 days so the guide had to pick axe a clearer pathway for hiking groups which meant we were stopping every few steps to wait for him. It was frustrating. Suggest another guide performs this instead of the guide for the group as it ruins the experience. Apart from that the trip with the helicopter was great and the ice cave worth the trip all by itself. Its not a hard hike and can be done by most able people. Thanks crew.
Tip - Book the earliest morning tour! Bad weather will usually only show up later in the day causing the later hikes to be canceled while the morning tours are still completed. This was an amazing experience. Our guide, Geidre, was friendly, knowledgeable, and patient. You travel through ice caverns and all over the glacier's formations, so you can really appreciate the power of the nature around you. I felt safe at all times and constantly in awe! Definitely worth it!
it had been raining last week and i heard that previous sessions were cancelled due to bad weather. Lucky me, it was a sunny morning (though i have planned to stay for 2 nights, just in case)
The center provided us waterproof jacket and trousers, socks, shoes, crampons, beanie, gloves and a cross body bag - so you dont have to worry about the gears.
it started with a short helicopter ride to the glacier starting point.
We had a few short-legged participants and I noticed our awesome guide Kallie has taken good care of care of them. Safety is the first priority and it has been repeatedly reinforced throughout the journey that no photo taking is allowed whenever there is a handrail around. There are plenty of good and safe spots. The hike took around 3 hours. Appreciated our guide Kallie moderated the pace all along.
The view at the glacier is much better in winter (you can see the snowy mountains only in winter).
The hot pool was rejuvenating, especially after the hike. It is just next door- you can enter once anytime during your stay at Franz Josef.
Walking on a glacier is a bucket list item. It was every bit as amazing as I hoped. Very well organised. The weather is unpredictable and the likelihood of not being able to fly is very high. I recommend booking the 1st trip of the day as the mornings seems to be more clear, and leave yourself 2-3 days to play with in case your hike should be postponed for a day or two, as this is worth abandoning your other travel plans. The normal hiking paths, to walk up to the glaciers through the forest, have mostly been destroyed. They are aiming to reconstruct them by Christmas. However 1 or 2 are still open, so still worth a try.
Our first time was cancelled due to bad weather so we hung around another day and were lucky enough to do a morning hike with Lawrence and we were so glad that we got this opportunity. Our guide Lawrence was so knowledgable and made the whole hike interesting. All along keeping an eye on the weather for our safety, the rest of the tours for the day were cancelled due to the weather. All equipment is supplied and a great team to ensure everyone has fun whilst remaining safe
What an amazing experience being able walk on the glacier and through some of the crevasses. Franz Josef Guides are truly helpful and the company supply all the gear you will need for an amazing experience on the ice. We were fortunate to have a perfect day.
Hands down the best tour I have been on! The glacier was amazing! Our guide, Justin did a great job keeping us all entertained and telling us about the glacier! The equipment they provide was clean and in excellent condition.