Along the way, there were massive waterfalls to enjoy and a strangely colored gray river leading out from the glacier. I'm standing next to the waterfall in the picture below, so that may give you an idea of its size, and that doesn't even include the upper part of it!
When we got closer to the glacier, I was struck by the blue hues in the ice. I've never seen anything like that in snow, and it looked really cool (ha-literally!).
We, um, sort of snuck under a barrier rope to walk farther along the path to get closer to the glacier. To be fair, lots of other people did it too (I know, I know), but that included a guided glacier group, so I knew it couldn't be that dangerous. That meant we got to see this ice cave and got a much better view of the blue hued glacier.
Then it was time to head to Fox Glacier, only thirty minutes away from Franz Josef. On the way, we stopped at Lake Matheson, hoping for some good pictures of snowy Mount Cook reflected in the lake. No such luck, but when the clouds parted for a brief moment, I did get a glimpse of the big mountain we would see later in our trip from the other side.