Franz Josef, New Zealand
Franz Josef is a small town in the West Coast region of the South Island of New Zealand. Whataroa is 32 km to the north-east, and the township of Fox Glacier is 23 km to the south-west. State Highway 6 runs through the town. The Waiho River runs from the Franz Josef Glacier to the south, through the town, and into the Tasman Sea to the north-west.
The town is named after the Franz Josef Glacier - itself named by Julius von Haast in honour of the Emperor of Austria Franz Josef I of Austria. The glacier's terminal face is 5 km from the town and its accessibility makes it a major tourist attraction and the reason many people visit Franz Josef. The town is located within the Westland Tai Poutini National Park.
Franz Josef offers many accommodation options for the up to 2,000 people staying overnight during the main season, ranging from hotels and motels to holiday houses, camping sites and backpacker accommodation. Other amenities include a petrol station, small but busy heliport and a number of restaurants and shops. The village is connected to the Franz Josef Glacier valley via walking tracks and a small sealed road leading into the valley from the highway just south of the village.
Franz Josef village is also home to the West Coast Wildlife Centre, developed in 2010 and dedicated to hatching and rearing the world's two rarest species of kiwi, the rowi and Haast tokoeka. The centre offers bookings for behind the scenes tours of its kiwi hatching and rearing facilities.
- Peter Dowling (editor) (2004). Reed New Zealand Atlas. Reed Books. map 74. ISBN 0-7900-0952-8.
- Roger Smith, GeographX (2005). The Geographic Atlas of New Zealand. Robbie Burton. map 173. ISBN 1-877333-20-4.
- Quickstats about Franz Josef
- "Franz Josef Glacier Village". Tourism New Zealand. Retrieved 2015-03-19.
- Anna Turner (20 Jul 2012). "Influx of kiwi eggs forces centre expansion". The Press. Retrieved 2015-03-19.
- "Te Kete Ipurangi - Franz Josef Glacier School". Ministry of Education.
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