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Franz Josef Town

Bus & Minivan Tours

Our most recommended Franz Josef Town Bus & Minivan Tours

Franz Josef: 3-Hour Kayak Tour on Lake Mapourika

1. Franz Josef: 3-Hour Kayak Tour on Lake Mapourika

Gear up for an incredible, three-hour guided kayaking experience. Begin your adventure by meeting your experienced team at the local partner's office in Franz Josef. Join them and your small group on a complimentary transfer out to Lake Mapourika. Glide effortlessly across the water, taking in panoramic views of the Southern Alps, glaciers, and untouched Jurassic rainforest reflected on the glassy waters of Lake Mapourika. Paddle into the heart of the Okarito Kiwi Bird Sanctuary, exploring the protected area with your knowledgeable guide. Tours depart at various times throughout the day. Mornings are often the calmest time of the day on the lake, a perfect choice for photographers looking to capture the beauty of the area. This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity and an experience not to be missed during your visit to Franz Josef.

Franz Josef Glacier: 2-Hour Scenic Lake Mapourika Cruise

2. Franz Josef Glacier: 2-Hour Scenic Lake Mapourika Cruise

Soak up panoramic views of the Southern Alps and glaciers reflecting on the mirror-like waters of Lake Mapourika on this 2-hour scenic cruise. The lake was created by the Franz Josef Glacier as it retreated 14,000 years ago and now sits calm and reflective between the Southern Alps and the sea. Meet your experienced skipper and small group at the office in Franz Josef and take a complimentary transfer out to Lake Mapourika. Board the boat, then sit back and relax onboard the Hanna-k in the comfortable enclosed cabin or on the covered back deck. Your skipper will take you through to the Okarito Kiwi Sanctuary on the far shorelines of the lake and will help you spot New Zealand's native birds. Enjoy informative commentary and fascinating stories as you cruise past untouched Jurassic rainforest and 900-year-old Kahikatea trees. Sip on a cup of complimentary tea or coffee as you unwind in beautiful Glacier Country, a picture perfect way to escape the crowds and enjoy the West Coast’s scenery.

Franz Josef Glacier: 2.5-Hour Lake Mapourika Cruise and Walk

3. Franz Josef Glacier: 2.5-Hour Lake Mapourika Cruise and Walk

Begin your adventure at the meeting point in Franz Josef to join your small group and transfer out to Lake Mapourika with your guide. Cruise across the lake in the comfort of the boat and enjoy a stunning vista of Southern Alps and glaciers. On a clear day enjoy views as far as Mount Cook.   Sit back as you arrive into the calm estuary of the Okarito Kiwi Sanctuary. Your local knowledgeable skipper will provide you with exclusive access and will guide you through a private rainforest trail.   Follow your skipper through the Jurassic rainforest track and get local insight on the region. Spot native birds as you find your way to the scenic lookout, the perfect spot for a cup or tea or coffee made on the spot.

Greymouth: Glacier, Heritage & Wildlife Centre Guided Tour

4. Greymouth: Glacier, Heritage & Wildlife Centre Guided Tour

Departing from Greymouth, you will enjoy a scenic drive South, following the coastline with ocean views before heading inland to reach your destination of Franz Josef. On the way you will stop at West Coast Tree Top Walkway, an exhilarating Treetop Adventure among temperate rain forest giants. Experience life with the birds, high in the ancient Rimu and Kamahi tree canopy. Easy access for all to enjoy along a steel platform 20 metres high and over 450 metres long. Climb the tower to reach great views for photography of the surrounding lake and mountain range. Next stop is calling into Ross Goldfields Information & Heritage Centre, a one-stop spot for gold mining history and regional information. The centre boasts a small museum where a replica of NZ’s largest gold nugget The Hon Roddy resides. This was uncovered at Ross in 1909. Please note the information centre is not always open and accessible. Reaching the township of Franz Josef, a popular tourist hot spot with thousands visiting the town to view the famous Franz Josef Glacier. Walk up to the glacier along a marked track called the Valley Walk, following the river bed. The trek will take approximately 30 to 45 minutes return. Allowing you to view the Glacier from a distance for safety. On your return to Franz Josef, you will visit the Wildlife Centre. Home to two of New Zealand’s native birds, the Rowi Kiwi and the Tuatara, the centre also hosts an interactive exhibit on the glacier so you can learn more about the history of the area. There is also a souvenir gift shop and cafe onsite. In Franz Josef there will be free time to buy lunch and look around the town before heading to Okarito, the gem of South Westland. Ōkārito is a small coastal settlement on the West Coast of New Zealand’s South Island. It is built at the southern end of the Ōkārito Lagoon at the mouth of the Ōkārito River. Boosting native New Zealand bird life and strong history of gold and timber. Visit the information heritage centre on the wharf to take in the lagoon and learn more about the wild history of Okarito. From here you will return back to Greymouth.

Fox Glacier: Half Day Walking & Nature Tour with Local Guide

5. Fox Glacier: Half Day Walking & Nature Tour with Local Guide

Walk through the lush historic glaciated rainforest in Westland Tai Poutini National Park, spotting the huge rata, rimu trees and moss. During the walk your guide will provide informative commentary on glaciation, geothermology geology, flora and fauna. Dip your hand into a geothermal spring to feel nature up close. Take in the views of upper Fox Glacier, Fox Neve, and Mount Tasman, one of New Zealand's highest mountains. Due to the location, you won't get up close to the terminal face of the glacier, this walk is predominantly focused on the stunning nature in the Fox Glacier Valley.  Upon completion of the walk, your guide will drop you back to your accommodation.

Franz Josef: Franz Josef Glacier Lookout Guided Walk

6. Franz Josef: Franz Josef Glacier Lookout Guided Walk

Enjoy a relaxing small-group walking tour in the glacier valley to view the Franz Josef Glacier with an experienced local guide where you will learn about glaciers and the local nature, history, local stories & Maori legends. Get picked up from your accommodation and drive to the glacier carpark to begin your guided tour. Stroll through the tepid rainforest full of creeks, beautiful flora, fauna, and native trees. Discover hidden gems such as native snails, mushrooms, orchids, and birds, waterfalls & glowworms. During the walk, enjoy a cup of tea with a view, listen to the songs of the forest birds & chat with your guide.

Franz Josef: Half-Day Nature Tour to Lake Matheson

7. Franz Josef: Half-Day Nature Tour to Lake Matheson

Start your adventure with hotel pickup or meeting at the local office in Franz Josef Township. Embark on the 40-minute drive in an air-conditioned van to Lake Matheson. Take a walk on an approximately 4.4-kilometer loop track around the Lake with your guide in a small group. Learn about flora, fauna, glaciation, geology and the amazing natural history of this beautiful lake. Look out for the reflections of the country's highest mountains, Mount Tasman and Mount Cook, in the lake's dark waters. The best chance for these reflections is either early morning or late evening.

Franz Josef: Half-Day Guided Tour to Okarito

8. Franz Josef: Half-Day Guided Tour to Okarito

Get off the beaten track and explore one of New Zealand's hidden gems on this half-day tour. Learn about the history of the old gold mining township of Okarito from your knowledgeable guide. Start your adventure in Franz Josef Township, where you will meet your guide and the rest of your group before departing on a 25-minute drive down the highway to reach Okarito. You will then head out on a walk to admire the stunning landscapes. Take in spectacular views of the mountains and glaciers of New Zealand's West Coast and take pictures as you go.  Experience unique bird & wildlife sightings throughout the tour, and if you're lucky you may get a chance to see dolphins. Your guide will do their best to tailor this walk to your interests. If you like photography, there is an opportunity to stop at the world-renowned Andris Apse photography gallery.

New Zealand: 9 Day South Island Tour

9. New Zealand: 9 Day South Island Tour

Day 1 - Christchurch to Lake Tekapo Marvel at the stars at the Dark Sky Project, Lake Tekapo. Visit The Church of the Good Shepherd. Hike up Mount John for panoramic views of the surrounding mountains and lakes. Day 2 - Lake Tekapo to Mount Cook (return) Spend the day at Aoraki/Mt Cook National Park. Hike the Hooker Valley Track to Hooker Lake. Day 3 - Lake Tekapo to Queenstown Enjoy a buffet dinner with panoramic views of Queenstown at the Skyline Stratosphere Restaurant (At your own expense). Day 4 - Queenstown free day Have the whole day to yourself and explore the wonders of Queenstown. Day 5 - Queenstown to Glenorchy day trip Cruise past the lake, soaking up the views, and onto Glenorchy for some short walks. Day 6 - Queenstown to Wanaka Roys Peak hike (6-hour return). Take in breathtaking views over Lake Wānaka (only accessible from November to May). Mt Iron hike (alternative to Roys Peak) that provides 360-degree views of The Pisa range. Visit the famous Wanaka tree. Day 7 - Wanaka to Franz Josef Thunder Creek falls in Mt Aspiring National Park. Head to Lake Matheson, famous for mirror views of Aoraki/Mount Cook. Day 8 - Franz Josef Design and carve your own Greenstone jewelry in a West Coast workshop (included). Walk the Glacier valley walk in Franz Josef Day 9 - Franz Josef to Christchurch Take a scenic hike across Arthurs Pass, walk the Castle Hill track, and visit Devils Punchbowl waterfalls.

New Zealand: 11 Day South Island Tour

10. New Zealand: 11 Day South Island Tour

Set off on an adventure-filled 11-day tour to discover and explore New Zealand's South Island with accommodation and some activities included. Day 1 - Wellington to Kaikoura Travel across the Cook Strait, one of the most enjoyable and beautiful ferry journeys in the world. Go for a wine tasting in the Marlborough region and visit the Kaikoura Seal colony. Day 2 - Kaikoura to Christchurch Hike the Kaikoura Peninsula Walkway. Enjoy the amazing panoramic views of Kaikoura and discover hidden gems of Christchurch in a city street art trail. Day 3 - Christchurch to Lake Tekapo Marvel at the stars at the Dark Sky Project, Lake Tekapo. Visit The Church of the Good Shepherd. Hike up Mount John for panoramic views of the surrounding mountains and lakes. Day 4 - Lake Tekapo to Mount Cook (return) Spend the day at Aoraki/Mt Cook National Park before Hiking the Hooker Valley Track to Hooker Lake. Day 5 - Lake Tekapo to Queenstown Delight your palate with a buffet dinner with panoramic views of Queenstown at the Skyline Stratosphere Restaurant (at your own expense). Day 6 - Queenstown free day Have the whole day to yourself and explore the wonders of Queenstown. Day 7 - Queenstown to Glenorchy day trip Cruise past the late, soaking up the views, and onto Glenorchy where you'll do some short walks. Day 8 - Queenstown to Wanaka Hike Roys Peak (6-hour return) and take in breathtaking views over Lake Wānaka (only accessible from November to May). Mt Iron hike (alternative to Roys Peak); provides 360-degree views of The Pisa range. Visit the famous Wanaka tree. Day 9 - Wanaka to Franz Josef Thunder Creek falls in Mt Aspiring National Park. Visit Lake Matheson, famous for mirror views of Aoraki/Mount Cook. Day 10 - Franz Josef Design and carve your own Greenstone jewelry in a West Coast workshop (included) and walk the Glacier valley walk in Franz Josef. Day 11 - Franz Josef to Christchurch Take a scenic hike across Arthurs Pass, walk the Castle Hill track, and admire Devils Punchbowl waterfalls.

Frequently asked questions about Franz Josef Town Bus & Minivan Tours

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What people are saying about Franz Josef Town

Overall rating

5.0 / 5

based on 4 reviews

Outstanding! On a perfect day we enjoyed the cruise and beauty of Lake Mapourika while learning of its history and natural surroundings. Magnificent views of the mountains and glaciers were mirrored in the serene waters. Jake was interesting and informative. Just do it! A photo album of wonderful memories.

Beautiful cruise around the lake with excellent cruise operator Dale... Kept us entertained with informative and interesting area history and west coast lifestyle...friendly and welcoming personality..

Tour guide David was fantastic. Very knowledgeable and took us to locations off the main track for some amazing sights.

Great hike. A lot bush walking which we thoroughly enjoyed. Guide was very knowledge able and informative.

The walk is easy and not long with lots of breaks to look at all the amazing views