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Franz Josef Glacier Guides retains status as top choice for backpackers
Franz Josef Glacier Guides has been voted the number one visitor attraction in New Zealand at this year’s TNT Golden Backpack Awards - for the second year in a row.
The TNT Golden Backpack Awards are the original and most well-established awards dedicated to the independent tourism sector, rewarding companies which work hard to make backpacking around Australia and New Zealand that extra bit special.
Following a ten-week campaign in TNT magazine and online, backpackers voted Franz Josef Glacier Guides the ‘Best Visitor Attraction - New Zealand’.
Manager Craig Buckland said the company was “thrilled” with the back-to-back win, particularly up against such strong competition in this year’s finalists.
Franz Josef Glacier Guides is an internationally-renowned tourism operator, with a history of guiding in the area stretching back over a century. It offers guided tours to one of New Zealand’s most incredible glaciers, and tours are enhanced by using helicopters to transport visitors to the glacier.
Trips start with a heli-ride from the South Island West Coast township of Franz Josef, taking visitors up to the glacier for guided hikes or ice-climbing on a pristine and breathtaking glacial landscape.
Buckland added “a second win means so much to our team who see the value and importance of delivery outstanding visitor experiences to the backpacker market.
“What makes this award win even more special is that it comes from public votes. It demonstrates that we have a world-class activity which backpackers know is truly a ‘once-in-a-lifetime’ experience, and pays testament to the skill and experience of our guides on the ice and team on the ground.”
Buckland said the company’s backpacker market had grown within its traditional markets or the UK and Ireland, as well as emerging backpacker travellers coming from the Chinese market.
Franz Josef Glacier Guides has also seen seasonal spread increase out into the traditional shoulder seasons.
Earlier this year Franz Josef Glacier Guides moved into the brand new Glacier Base building in the township’s Cron Street, a purpose-built guiding centre reflecting the changing need of the market and providing support for a world-class product.
Buckland concluded “this has been hugely successful in terms of visualisation and in enhancing the customer experience through better processing within a brand new, functional space as well as enabling us to offer on-site café.”
Franz Josef Glacier is located high in the Southern Alps and deep within the lush rainforest of Westland’s National Park.
As well as fun and interaction on the ice, visitors can enjoy the dramatic and dynamic scenery with a Glacier Valley Walk, running alongside the mighty Waiho River.
For more information go to www.franzjosefglacier.com
Image: Fun on the glacier with Franz Josef Glacier Guides.
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