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Begin your visit at the Glowworm Caves Visitor Centre, picking one of the range of tour departure times that work best for your schedule. Then prepare to experience the magic of this unexpected subterranean adventure.

Start your glowworm experience by exploring the giant cave complex on foot, stopping to visit its ‘Cathedral Cave,’ a site renowned for its unique acoustics and striking cave features. Then step aboard your boat to continue your adventure.

You’ll silently cruise through the Glowworm Grotto, marveling at the star-like constellation of bioluminescent insects that seem to twinkle like an eerie blue version of the nighttime sky. Your guide will provide details about the insects themselves, known by their scientific name of Arachnocampa luminosa, and share insights into the geologic and historical background of the cave complex.

Leave the caves after your 45-minute underground journey, still marveling at the mysterious beauty of these surprising insects.
Locations visited
Waitomo Glowworm Caves
Ruakuri Cave
Come visit a New Zealand attraction that’s sure to have you ‘glowing’ during this 45-minute small-group guided boat ride through the famous Waitomo Glowworm Caves. Glide by boat through this underground complex, enjoying a light show put on by the millions of tiny bioluminescent insects hanging above. As an added bonus, many of the trip guides are of Maori descent, adding unique historical context to your visit.
  • Discover New Zealand's famous Waitomo Glowworm Caves on a guided boat trip
  • Learn the science behind these mysterious glowing creatures, known as 'Arachnocampa luminosa'
  • Marvel at a virtual 'constellation' of glowworms above your head in the Glowworm Grotto
  • Explore this massive cave complex on foot, including a chance to visit Cathedral Cave
  • Hear about the geology and history of the caves from your guide
  • Once-in-a-lifetime experience
  • Great way to explore the unique natural beauty of New Zealand
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1 - 5 of 8 reviews
Reviewed 2 weeks ago
Well worth the drive

This was a beautifully presented attraction, nice cafe and gift shop. Our guide was a local full of character and knowledge and certainly had passion for the area and the caves. We did the 45 minute paid Glowworm caves tour which included the caves and...More

1  Thank iVeracity
Reviewed May 14, 2018
Good to see glow worm / very busy

This is a must do to see glow worms. Sadly, it is rather over crowed with a lot of rather rude pushy people (rudeness not the venues fault). I found this tour to be rushed; the boat trip is about 5 minutes. Sadly, the guides...More

1  Thank Donna T
Reviewed March 8, 2018
Not worth the money and overloaded

Too many people and too much money for a handful of minutes with a medium knowledged guide in a pretty packed mass tourism site. Pick out other glowworm caves if you want a pure Cave and Glowworm Experience to get away from masses and a...More

2  Thank NZJafa
Reviewed March 3, 2018
loved it

great experiance,bit out of our way but worth the travel.Glow worms were at there best,over sees visiter was truly amazed.

1  Thank Flo S
Reviewed February 23, 2018
A little disappointing

We’d been first to the Ruakuri cave and that was great, good guide (Wayne) and nearly two hour walking tour. The Glow Worm caves arevery crowded which spoils the walking part as its too noisy and not enough time to take in what are still...More

2  Thank 265martynn
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