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Walks, Tracks & Tramps

Glacier Country has walks and hikes to suit every fitness level and time frame from short, easy 30 minute walks to three day hikes. Walk in the rainforest, take a walk to look for birds, explore historic relics and get a good workout on a tramping track with hot pools at the end. Or enjoy the easy shared walking and cycling track at Franz Josef Glacier.  Glacier Country holds delights for everyone who wants to get out and about in nature.

Here we have included descriptions of the walking tracks and hikes in and around Fox Glacier, Lake Matheson, Franz Josef, Okarito and surrounding areas.

Call into the Westland Tai Poutini National Park Visitor Centre and I-SITE in Franz Josef village for up-to-date weather conditions, detailed guides and personal locator beacons, or to learn more about the area.

Pakihi Walk Okarito

The Pakihi Walk is within the bounds of the Okarito Kiwi Zone. On a clear...
The Pakihi Walk is within the bounds of the Okarito Kiwi Zone. On a clear day you can get a panoramic view of the Southern Alps, the rainforest and the...

Sentinel Rock Walk Fran...

Sentinel Rock offers the best view of the Franz Josef Glacier for the least amount...
Sentinel Rock offers the best view of the Franz Josef Glacier for the least amount of effort. In military speak a sentinel is a guard who stands watch over a...

Te Ara a Waiau - Walkwa...

Walk or cycle through bush from Franz Josef Township to the Franz Josef Glacier car...
Walk or cycle through bush from Franz Josef Township to the Franz Josef Glacier car park.  This is a shared-use track. 8.7km return via same track.  Walking 2hrs on an easy...

Lake Matheson Fox Glaci...

This is one of the easiest and most popular walks on the West Coast and...
This is one of the easiest and most popular walks on the West Coast and is suitable for people of all abilities and fitness. The 2.6 kilometre circuit around the...

Fox Glacier Valley Walk

This walk will take you about one hour return, depending on where the safety barriers...
This walk will take you about one hour return, depending on where the safety barriers are. The Fox Glacier is the largest and longest of the spectacular West Coast glaciers....

Lake Wombat Track Franz...

This is an easy forest walk that will lead you to Lake Wombat, a bush...
This is an easy forest walk that will lead you to Lake Wombat, a bush enclosed tarn at the foot of Alex Knob. This is a kettle lake that was...

Franz Josef Glacier Val...

This is your chance to take a gentle stroll and be inspired! Even when it...
This is your chance to take a gentle stroll and be inspired! Even when it is teeming with rain, the Glacier Valley is still a place of isolation, wonderment and...

Minnehaha Walk Fox Glac...

This easy all-weather track is well graded and sheltered by the moss strewn forest and...
This easy all-weather track is well graded and sheltered by the moss strewn forest and a wealth of ferns. The track is wheelchair and pushchair friendly, and takes about 20...

Te Weheka Walkway/Cycle...

Walk or cycle through bush from Fox Glacier Township to the Fox Glacier car park....
Walk or cycle through bush from Fox Glacier Township to the Fox Glacier car park.  This is a shared-use track. 8.4 km return via same track.  Walking 2 hrs 20 mins...

Moraine Walk Fox Glacie...

This easy walk is a perfect example of how plants can quickly regenerate after a...
This easy walk is a perfect example of how plants can quickly regenerate after a glacier has retreated. It takes forty minutes return, and you can see all stages of...

Okarito Trig & 3 Mi...

The trail takes about ninety minutes return. The site of the Okarito Trig viewing platform...
The trail takes about ninety minutes return. The site of the Okarito Trig viewing platform was once a vital hub for the first survey network. Surveyor explorers such as Julius...

Copland Track - Welcome...

It takes around seven hours to reach the Welcome Flat Hut via a well marked...
It takes around seven hours to reach the Welcome Flat Hut via a well marked track and there is the added bonus of the relaxing natural hot pools. The hut...

Lake Mapourika

Lake Mapourika is a kettle lake. It was formed when a large block of ice...
Lake Mapourika is a kettle lake. It was formed when a large block of ice was left behind by the retreating Franz Josef Glacier some fourteen thousand years ago. It...

Roberts Point Track Fra...

This walk takes around five hours return from the Franz Josef Glacier carpark. It climbs...
This walk takes around five hours return from the Franz Josef Glacier carpark. It climbs via a rocky track and multiple swing bridges to a high viewpoint above Franz Josef...

Gillespies & Galway...

There are a number of short walks that will take you to mining relics and...
There are a number of short walks that will take you to mining relics and a miner’s cemetery at Gillespie’s Beach. Gold was discovered at Gillespie’s Beach in 1865, and...

Peak View Lookout Fox G...

This lookout is a two minute walk from the car park on Cook Flat Road....
This lookout is a two minute walk from the car park on Cook Flat Road. Enjoy the picnic area and on a clear day use the plane table. It is...

Waitangitaona Wetland W...

This easy access walk is both wheelchair and pushchair friendly, and it gives you an...
This easy access walk is both wheelchair and pushchair friendly, and it gives you an incredible introduction to West Coast wetlands. It takes approximately twenty minutes to complete the circuit,...

Douglas Walk Franz Jose...

The Douglas Walk is a wide, well graded path that leads you over glacial landforms...
The Douglas Walk is a wide, well graded path that leads you over glacial landforms that are over three and a half thousand years old. Charlie Douglas was a well...

Tatare Tunnels Walk Fra...

The track takes you to the tunnels that were blasted through bedrock and used to...
The track takes you to the tunnels that were blasted through bedrock and used to supply water to Waiho River sluice face during the historic gold rush. The walk takes...

Alex Knob Track Franz J...

The Alex Knob Track takes approximately eight hours return and climbs steadily through a variety...
The Alex Knob Track takes approximately eight hours return and climbs steadily through a variety of vegetation types. This track is for experienced and well-equipped trampers only. Location The trailhead is half...

Canavan's Knob Fra...

The track takes approximately forty minutes return and includes a steady climb through rainforest to...
The track takes approximately forty minutes return and includes a steady climb through rainforest to a breathtaking views of the Tasman Sea and the Franz Josef Glacier. In mountaineering terms...

Swing Bridge Walk Fox G...

This carefully graded short walk allows you to capture stunning views of the Fox Glacier...
This carefully graded short walk allows you to capture stunning views of the Fox Glacier and cross a historic swing bridge. Location The track can be accessed from the Chalet Lookout car...

Terrace Walk Franz Jose...

This stunning short walk takes you straight into the podocarp hardwood forest. Walk to a...
This stunning short walk takes you straight into the podocarp hardwood forest. Walk to a historic gold mining sluice face only a few hundred metres from the centre of the...

Okarito Township and La...

The historic settlement of Okarito was built on a sand-spit within the bounds of the...
The historic settlement of Okarito was built on a sand-spit within the bounds of the Okarito Lagoon. Originally a Maori settlement and then a busy gold mining town, the village...

Mount Fox Route Fox Gla...

The cliché in the early guide books that this track is “not for the faint...
The cliché in the early guide books that this track is “not for the faint hearted” is no exaggeration. If you are fit and experienced it will take you about...

Callery-Waiho Walk Fran...

The Callery-Waiho walk is an engrossing track that takes about two and a half hours...
The Callery-Waiho walk is an engrossing track that takes about two and a half hours one way. Follow the footsteps of the old gold miners to the Franz Josef Glacier....

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