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The West Coast of New Zealand is known for its phenomenal untouched beauty, majestic charm wild activities and attractions. You will be consumed by the tranquil serenity of the landscape and amazed by the peaks of the mountains and icy glaciers. West Coast is filled with fun and exciting things to do during your stay and there are attractions to suit all ages, tastes and budgets. With everything from adrenaline-pumping adventure to a relaxing day out, life is never dull on the West Coast.
Glacier Hot Pools
To wind down after a long day be sure to head down to the Glacier Hot Pools by Franz Josef. These unique pools are nestled within luscious rainforest, and are the perfect place to relax and unwind in a space of tranquility. The complex consists of three invitingly warm main pools and three secluded private pools. The surrounding native bush is vibrant and offers nothing but the noise of the birds chirping in the background and a fantastic view. You can find the glacier Hot Pools in the heart of Franz Josef township on Cron Street and they are operational from 12:00am to 10:00 pm daily.
For something completely out of the ordinary Cowboy Paradise offers a unique horse trek that includes target shooting, clay bird shooting and stand-offs in true cowboy style! Get right into theme and dress up if you wish, either way this is one unique and exciting adventure to be had on the West Coast. The horse trek takes you from Hokitika, past the scenic Lake Kaniere (pronounced like the bird, Canary), through native reserve to offer the first glimpse of the majestic Upper Arahura Valley. There is a variety of packages to choose from and Cowboys Paradise is great for small or large groups and older children.
Swingbridge Adventure and Heritage Park
Swingbridge Adventure and Heritage Park is a one-stop-shop for thrilling excitement and adventure that’s suitable for all ages and budgets. Take a jet boat ride through the upper Buller gorge where you can marvel at the surrounding pink granite rocks. There is also the famous Comet Line ride which is a 160 m flying fox with a difference, this one is suitable for everyone as you remain comfortably seated and safely strapped i; this ride can even be taken as a tandem flight. To add a little balance enjoy a walk along New Zealand’s longest SwingBridge where you can view the spectacular scenery from the heights. There are also guided nature walks and hikes to be had with experienced guideds. For all your entertainment needs stop by Swingbridge Adventure and Heritage Park; located just hours away from Nelson and Picton, Westport and Christchurch.
Gear up for the ultimate guided tour of Franz Josef with the help of some fun-filled quad bikes. These two seater ATV bikes provide an exhilarating way to explore rainforest, riverbeds, ice, grass and mud all in the same tour! Quad bike adventures are fun, suitable for most ages and run throughout the entire year. There are day and half day trips available and all necessary equipment is provided.
Most attractions on the West Coast are about experiencing the scenery and landscape in various ways, why not enjoy a little history too? It’s common knowledge that the discovery of gold in 1864 drew settlers from right around the world bringing the population from a tiny 300 to nearly 30,000 in just a few months. With this boom came some amazing stories of ingenuity and many great industrial advances. Shantytown offers the chance to relive the experience of early New Zealand gold mining. There are steam train rides, holographic theatre shows and traditional gold panning. Fun will be had with this exciting and educational day out.
Take some time to explore this uniquely beautiful area of the world by booking into Franz Josef Glacier accommodation and starting your West Coast experience of a life time.