Franz Josef Glacier is the steepest and fastest moving glacier in New Zealand. At 12 kilometer long, 2,600 meters high, this 7000 year old body of ice is sliding down a mountain valley into a rainforest. Franz Josef can be safely viewed from as close as 15 meters.The area surrounding the two glaciers is part of Te Wahipounamu, a World Heritage Site park.
A view looking south-east over the popular Franz Josef Glacier, named after an Australian King. In the distance, Mt Tasman an Mt Cook rise above the Southern Alps. A huge number of people walk to the base of the glacier, and even take guided trips up on it, but flying around the area is also a spectacular option.