This morning is all about the highly recommend Lake Matheson hike where you get incredible views over the Southern Alps if the weather is clear, and if it’s calm the lake can reflect the view.
We then travel the short distance to Franz Josef where the afternoon is all about visiting the Franz Josef glacier, either by Helicopter or by walking up to the terminal face viewpoint. The heli hike option is one of the most memorable activities you can do during the tour and is the only way to step foot on the ice, you fly up by helicopter and mountain guides take you into cravasses and ice caves before a short return flight to Franz Josef. If you’re not keen to head up by helicopter, you can view the valley and glacier but from a distance, the trail is also open to bikes so make the most of the afternoon and explore the area. There is something for everyone here and if glaciers aren't for you explore the nearby water ways with a guided kayak tour or take to the skys with a scenic skydive.
We then leave Franz Josef and make our way to Okarito, a tiny west coast town that is famous for its wetlands reserve and bird conservation projects, where it’s possible to spot some rare and endangered bird including the kiwi!
The camp is right next to a quiet west coast beach where we like to set up a small camp fire and chill out while watching the stars.
- Meals: Breakfast and Dinner
- Bike Rides: Ride along the walk/cycleway to the Glacier viewpoint. There is also a beautiful ride on the quiet road that leads to Okarito
- Walks and Hikes: A highly recommended walk around Lake Matheson in the morning then if you're not hiking on the ice, head up to the terminal face viewpoint in the afternoon.
- Available Upgrades: Yes (limited options)
- Drive Distance: Approx. 3 hours