Waitomo

Waitomo

1 night stay with Kiwi Experience (January 2016)

Introduction

The Waitomo region is home to unforgettable sightseeing attractions. The most famous of which, the Waitomo Glowworm Caves, Arachnocampa luminosa, a must see for any traveller in the region. It is an experience completely unique to New Zealand. T​housands of these tiny creatures radiate their unmistakable luminescent light, which are most commonly viewed on a boat trip around the remarkable caves which last around 45 minutes.

It has become more popular to combine your experience of visiting this famous place with Ruakuri Cave; where you will see glowworms up close and descend a spectacular spiral entrance. You can also visit Aranui Cave.

If you are looking to fully experience the caves and are willing to be a little more adventurous, The Legendary Black Water Rafting Co offer a variety of activity and adventure packages that have amazing write-ups. Includes; black water rafting, cave abseiling (rappelling) cave eco-tours & natural attractions above and below ground. It’s a New Zealand adventure & scenic paradise in the North Island, easily reached from Auckland, Rotorua & Taupo and only 15 minutes from towns Otorohanga to the north & Te Kuiti to the south.

Whatever you desire you do, I must say the standard boat trip and tour of the caves was beautiful and is the very least you should do when visiting Waitomo!

Accommodation

There is adequate accommodation in the area, however there is not too much available within the Waitomo cave vicinity. I highly recommend pre-booking somewhere in the area so you can enjoy the caves and stay if you book one of the adventure packages. If you are travelling with Kiwi Experience, they will arrange your accommodation for you, which was at the Base hostel a few minutes walk from the caves. If you are tight on time or only wish to do the boat ride around the caves which lasts around 45 minutes, I would recommend driving straight onto Rotorua after your experience, which has a bigger town and more to do.

My Experience:

Departing Hot Water Beach this morning, we arrived in Waitomo just after lunch and checked in to our accommodation for tonight. The afternoon was spent at leisure exploring the Waitomo caves. People left at various times for their bookings depending on which activity they had chosen. I am not a big fan of heights or rock climbing, so I stuck to doing the classic boat trip and guided tour of the caves. I highly recommend as it was very informative and I really enjoyed it.

That night the group socialised at the bar onsite the Base accommodation. If I had been travelling alone or with friends with a campervan I would have gone on to spend the night at Rotorua, however as I was with Kiwi Experience I needed to make the stop over here. It was a good opportunity for socialising, however I was keen to get going and was not a fan of waiting around!

The next morning there were a lot of sore heads from some members of the group who had stayed up drinking and socialising the past 2 nights. It took a longer time to get to Rotorua than I think was necessary, however we finally got there at 2pm again, with the afternoon to spend at leisure.

Next Stop – Rotorua!

Love,
-The Sloan Ranger x

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