New Zealand, Glaciers

Franz Josef Glacier

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The Franz Josef Glacier is a spectacular glacier and one of New Zealand's most iconic natural attractions. The Franz Josef Glacier is over 7 miles long and descends from the Southern Alps to the lush rainforest below, making it one of the few glaciers in the world that descends into a rainforest.

You can experience the Franz Josef Glacier in a variety of ways, from a scenic hike to a guided glacier hike to a scenic helicopter tour. The glacier itself is constantly moving and changing, creating crevasses, icefalls, and other unique formations that make it a fascinating natural wonder to explore.

Along with the stunning views of the glacier, we recommend exploring the breathtaking landscapes of the surrounding national park, which is home to towering mountains, lush forests, and crystal-clear rivers.

The Franz Josef Glacier Trail used to be one of the most popular ways to explore the area, but the river has recently cut off access up the valley, leaving you with a pretty distant view of the glacier. If you still want to get amazing views of Franz Josef Glacier, we recommend taking Alex Knob Track, a 10-mile challenging out-and-back trail. Check our AllTrails link for more details.