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Our Story


Franz Josef wilderness Tours is a locally owned and operated family run business on the South Island’s West Coast.  After 10 years in business & with over 16 years of guiding experience in Franz Josef Glacier you know you’re in good hands with Dale & the team.

Bronwyn, originally from Canada, has been kayaking for many years including multi-week trips around Vancouver Island. Dale has been an outdoor guide for over 15 years with 6 years spent as a Glacier Guide for the Franz Josef Glacier Guides, and a few seasons spent kayak guiding in Canada. Dale has spent his life as an outdoorsman in New Zealand, and is a qualified Maritime NZ Skipper. He is one of our lead guides and you might find him paddling, fishing or cruising on the water most days.


While guiding in Canada over a summer period in 2008, Bronwyn paddled into Dale. Bronwyn and Dale continued guiding in Canada and Stewart Island NZ, before taking over Glacier Country Kayaks in 2013 and Glacier Country Lake Tours in 2015.  Recently, in November they brought their kayak & boating operations together to now be Franz Josef Wilderness Tours.

Franz Josef Wilderness Tours is teamed with an awesome crew from a range of backgrounds who have a wealth of knowledge and experience.

Come explore this amazing part of the Westland Tai Poutini National Park with us. We can’t wait to show you our slice of paradise…

The Family Behind Franz Josef Wilderness Tours


At Franz Josef Wilderness Tours safety is our top priority – its integrated into every part of our organization!  Our Kayak and Paddleboard tours are safety audited by Qualworx and hold the highly recognized OutdoorsMark endorsement.  This ensures that only the highest standards of safety are implemented throughout the business, you know you’re in good hands. Our boat tours are full MOSS accredited and adhere to all of Maritime NZ regulations.

We proudly hold the Qualmark Silver endorsement which represents a high level of quality, service and environmental sustainability.  Sustainable Tourism is at the core of what we do.  We operate within a beautiful National Park and UNESCO world heritage site, it’s our duty to look after our playground.

Adventure Mark Logo


Operating in the South Westland UNESCO World Heritage Site and the Westland Tai Poutini National Park comes with responsibility.  A responsibility to care for our local environment and the planet.  Sustainability is a core part of what we do and we’re proud to have achieved Carbon Zero status through working with Ekos New Zealand to identify and reduce our carbon emission.  What we couldn’t reduce we have offset and we’re proud of how far we’ve come. 

A portion of all our tours is returned to the Department of Conservation for further restoration and care for New Zealand, and we’re partners with the Zero Invasive Predators initiative in the region.

To view our full sustainability mission, and learn more about our initiatives please visit: