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Franz Josef Heli Hike - Franz Josef Glacier Guides

Franz Josef, New Zealand

Enjoy a helicopter ride to the Franz Josef Glacier, then embark on a three hour guided hike on the ice!

DurationUp to 4 hrs
Start & End Time
Start & End Time8.30am, 11am
Max Group Size
Max Group Size11
Minimum Age
Minimum Age8 yrs
Fitness Level
Fitness LevelModerate
MealsNot included
Start & End Location
Start & End LocationThe Helicopter Line Base

Franz Josef Heli Hike - Franz Josef Glacier Guides Highlights

  • Get up to $40 cash back per person when you book with us
  • Enjoy a spectacular helicopter flight over rugged terrain
  • A short 5-minute transfer flight to and from the glacier
  • Embark on a two hour guided hike on the ice
  • Discover New Zealand's famous Franz Josef glacier 
  • Explore the area with a professional, experienced guide
  • Enjoy exclusive access to the glacier

Please note due to demand this product goes on manual request and we will reply with confirmation email once confirmed or supply different options

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What to Expect

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Frequently Asked Questions

Can we wear our own boots/jackets?

Most customers choose to borrow gear supplied by Franz Josef Glacier Guides. The benefits being that you will come back to your own fresh gear and do not run the risk of damage caused by the ice.

You are welcome to wear your own waterproof jacket, as well as quality ankle-supporting hiking boots upon assessment from one of our guides; or you can choose to wear the weatherproof boots that we provide. Feel free to call us or stop by our base if you would like advice.

You are welcome to wear your own good quality ankle supporting hiking boots with our crampons, or you can choose to wear the boots that we provide. Our boots are comfortable and warm and ensure you don't damage your own boots when strapping on your crampons. If you choose to wear your own boots, bring them in for a fitting the evening prior to your tour departure to see if they are suitable.

Check in time for Heli Hike, Heli Ice Climbs and Glacier Valley Walk is 1 hour prior to the trip time stated on your booking confirmation. 

This allows us plenty of time to prepare you for your trip, fill in medical information, give a weather update, and get you kitted up with all the necessary equipment.

Come in and see our friendly team 15 minutes prior to your trip time.

We ask that you do not bring a backpack on your Heli Hike or Ice Climb as there is limited space in the helicopter.

On all our trips we provide you with a small waist bag to carry your essentials (phone/camera, sunscreen, sunglasses, water and a snack). Please do not bring valuables, camera bags, selfie sticks, wallets, phones, keys. chargers or spare batteries.

Blue ice is a major highlight of a glacier tour. You have a good chance of seeing blue ice on our Heli Hike tour as the helicopter will land high up on the glacier allowing you to explore some of the best bits the Glacier has to offer. 

The temperature on the ice is typically only about 1-2 degrees cooler than in town but due to the nature of the environment the temperature can be very changeable and we recommend wearing 2-4 warm layers of upper body clothing depending on the conditions on the day.


It is the high annual rainfall in the Glacier region (6-8 metres per year) that allows the glaciers to grow and without the rain, these magnificent glaciers would not be here. We do provide you with the best in rain protection including Goretex Rain Jackets and waterproof over trousers.

Sometimes the weather means that helicopters can't fly; heavy rain, high wind, low cloud.  If your tour is cancelled due to these reasons, Franz Josef Glacier Guides will automatically transfer you onto our Glacier Valley Walk the same day.  There is no obligation to participate and you can cancel at any time.  We just want to make sure you don't miss out on a great glacier experience. 

Yes! In order to uphold safety standards we are not able to accept as clients any person over the weight of 115kg (253.5lb). Children need to be at least 8 years old, weight at least 35kg and be at least 137cm tall.

The helicopter ride is 5 minutes long both way. The hike is up to 2.5 hours long. 

3-4 warm upper body layers (ideally woollen or polypro, not cotton)
A pair of lightweight trousers
A water bottle
A small snack
A  Camera ( at your own risk)

A water-proof jacket
Water-proof over trousers
Weather-proof hiking boots
Thermal socks
A small waist bag. This is the only bag you will be able to take, and is capable of storing your water bottle, snack and camera
Extra layers if you should need them. 

Jeans, or any form of denim clothing. The reason behind this is that if your denim clothing got wet, they get very cold and heavy and become restrictive when hiking. This is a Health and Safety risk.  We are able to provide overtrousers if this is all you have.

Selfie-sticks or Galaxy Note 7 Mobile Phones as the Civil Aviation Authority does not allow the use of these devices.

A backpack as there is limited space in the helicopters, we please ask you to leave backpacks behind. We do however provide a small waist bag that you are able to store your water, snack and camera.


Due to the nature of the glacier there are some restrictions on the participation of children.

There are minimum age, weight and height requirements for children wishing to join our Heli Hike trips, see the terms and conditions page for this information. Due to glacier and weather conditions these guidelines may change. Participation in the hike is ultimately the decision of the lead guide on the day. All children under the age of 18 years old must be accompanied by a paying parent or guardian for the duration of the trip from check in until return to base after the hike.

The minimum age for the Heli Ice Climb experience is 16 years and a full paying parent or guardian must also accompany anyone under 18 years for the duration of this activity.

Factors such as lack of physical fitness, pre-existing medical conditions including, but not limited to, ankle injuries, knee injuries or ACL damage, joint replacements, dislocations, neck or back injuries, heart conditions, high or low blood pressure, diabetes or asthma can effect capacity to safely take part in a glacier trip and in turn increase the possibility of sustaining an injury.

If you have any medical conditions or have had surgery in the last 10 years we recommend consulting your doctor about your participation in a glacier trip and making Franz Josef Glacier Guides aware of your condition.

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