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FJ to Wanaka drive after the hike tour

Sunnyvale
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FJ to Wanaka drive after the hike tour

Hello,

I am planning to take a half day hike in Franz Josef on Dec 29th ( looks like the tickets are available only for the 10.30AM tour)

After the tour, i am planning to drive down to Wanaka for the night stay...I believe the drive is around 5 hours...do you think it is feasible to drive down to wanaka for the night given that my hike tour will be complete only in the afternoon. I would assume around 1-2PM.

I am coming out of US ...not sure how safe it will be drive down from FJ to Wanaka after the hike tour.

Any insights or alternate suggestions highly appreciated.

Thanks

New Zealand
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1. Re: FJ to Wanaka drive after the hike tour

Hi Gunchu, the drive is fine as long as you aren't tired, which you may be after the hiking. It also depends on how long you have been in the country (you still might be fighting jet lag) and how used you are to driving on the left.

The daylight hours are long in Dec, however if time permits you might be best to wait and drive the following morning. The road has some great short hikes to enjoy, The Blue Pools is 30 minutes return, some waterfalls 5 minutes each. The road also has many one-lane bridges where you need to stop and check for on coming traffic before proceeding.

Hope this helps :)

Greymouth, New...
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2. Re: FJ to Wanaka drive after the hike tour

My advice to you would be to not drive any further than you need to.

I would advise to stay the night in either Franz Joseph or Fox, but not to drive to Wanaka.

I am a professional driver, drive these road regularily and after climbing a glacier, I to keep any driving to an absolute minimum, which does not include long distances like to wanaka or Haast

Greymouth, New...
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3. Re: FJ to Wanaka drive after the hike tour

The hot pools in FranzJoseph are awesome after a Glacier climb

Sunnyvale
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4. Re: FJ to Wanaka drive after the hike tour

Thanks for the suggestions.

Is there anything to see in FJ other than the hike? I was earlier planning to spend just one night in FJ (night before the half day tour hike) and then head towards Wanaka.

Given you suggestions, I might have to skip Wanaka and directly head towards Queenstown.

Greymouth, New...
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5. Re: FJ to Wanaka drive after the hike tour

Lake cruise on Lake maporika, Quad bike riding, hot pools, helecoptor sight seeing, helehiking (now that is awesome and would be ok to drive afterward),Ice wall climbing, visit the DOC office.

that is some of the activities off the top of my head, not to mention some awesome restuarants

Christchurch, New...
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6. Re: FJ to Wanaka drive after the hike tour

Bear in mind that the half day hike may not end until 2pm by the time you get back to the village & change your clothes. Then you'll need lunch. If you need to move on perhaps consider Haast as a stop-over.

franz josef glacier
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7. Re: FJ to Wanaka drive after the hike tour

try the kayaking.

see reviews on www.rankers.co.nz..........west coast.........glacier country kayaks

and also see www.glacierkayaks.com

Sacramento...
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8. Re: FJ to Wanaka drive after the hike tour

I was just on the South Island and traveled from the Fox Glacier (about 20 minutes south of FJ) to Queenstown in just over five hours, so it would be less than that to get to Wanaka. The road is windy, but if you've driven on Route 1 in California or any other narrow, two-lane coastal roads in the U.S., it is similar. I think you could realistically make the drive after your hike, but you may want to consider sticking around the glaciers, especially if it is a nice day. It is a beautiful area and there is definitely more to see than the glaciers. We took a morning heli-hike on Fox Glacier, and in the afternoon drove out to Gillespie Beach then walked around Lake Matheson, which you'll see on a million postcards with the Southern Alps reflected in it.

9. Re: FJ to Wanaka drive after the hike tour

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