Get up close with New Zealand's natural wonders.

Lake Mapourika & Okarito Kiwi Sanctuary

Get up close with New Zealand’s natural wonders…


Lake Mapourika sits in the Franz Josef Glacier valley and was created as the Glacier retreated some 14,000 years ago. It’s surrounding of tall peaks leave the lake calm and mirror like, with unbeatable panoramic views of many glaciers and some of the tallest peaks in the country.


From the lake we enjoy watching the weather patterns as they form. Sandwiched between the Franz Josef Glacier and the sea – watch the clouds roll in and sweep over the hills, creating a dramatic setting. Often drizzling in town we remain warm and dry on the lake. The opportunities for photographers are endless!


The back of the lake borders the Okarito State forest, which is left in its prehistoric state as this forest has sprung up after the last ice age and is found in its same pristine state today. This area is protected habitat of the rarest kiwi on the planet – the Rowi. When the sun sets these elusive birds come out to play.


We are lucky enough to be able to slide our kayaks into a small estuary which winds through the forest and deep into the kiwi sanctuary. This is a highlight of the tour – as we enjoy friendly native birds darting out to say hello, reflective waters and some 900 year old kahikatea trees. Your guide will let you spread out and be left to your imagination.

A very well run operation. Beautiful lake. They have different sized kayaks so you can get a comfortable fit. I felt safe at all times. We went in the rain and it was fantastic!

Margaret S. - Hokitika, West Coast, New Zealand


Join us for a kayaking tour that you'll never forget. Ranked number one on the list of things to do while in Franz Josef!
Explore a glacial lake, native rainforest and views of the unique alpine environment with Glacier Country Kayaks.

Read more about our team, before we meet you out on the lake!


Ready to hit the lake? Join us with your family and friends for a guided kayaking tour on the stunning Lake Mapourika in New Zealand's scenic West Coast.
Choose from our kayak tours or even a combo with a scenic glacier flight, Franz Josef sky dive or hike.
Book Today!


Contact Glacier Kayaks to arrange your West Coast kayaking adventure!

  •    Across the road from the Glacier Hot Pools, 64 Cron Street,
    Franz Josef Glacier Village, 7856 , South Westland, New Zealand

  •    +64 (03) 752 0230

  •    0800 423 262


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