Fun For All The Family at the Waitomo Caves
We were spending three nights in a campsite near Lake Taupo with some family friends and one day we were at a loss of how to entertain us adults, a three year old, a seven year and a ten year old. We had picked up a flyer for Waitomo Caves from the local i-Site and thought that it fitted the bill perfectly so rounded everyone into the cars and headed north-west. Less than two hours later and we had arrived at Waitomo Caves.
After browsing the many different visitor options available, we decided that the Waitomo cave combo package that included the glowworm caves and Aranui Cave was the best option for us. After a short wait at the main Waitomo Cave entrance, a tour guide took us and around twenty other tourists into the first section of caves. It took us a little time to adjust to the dim lighting but we could see the cave formations while the guide gave us a brief history of the caves and how they had been formed. It was a great blend of history and interesting facts which meant that it catered for us as well as the kids. We were then shown a few little specks of light on the roof of the caves which were glowworms and taken further into the caves to the underground river.
At the river, our tour was put onto a boat and we were told to look up and I was amazed to see virtually millions of glowworms in all their lit-up glory. We then emerged from the caves into bright sunshine and our tour was over. There was a chance to buy a picture of our group on the boat as we left the main Waitomo Cave area, which we declined.
In order to get to the second part of our trip, the Aranui Cave, we could either wait for the shuttle bus or take our own cars. We decided to take our own cars for convenience and drive a couple of minutes up the road to the next cave. Here we had to wait about thirty minutes outside the cave entrance for our allocated tour time and right on cue the tour guide appeared. We were then given a short safety briefing, mainly about what not to touch, before entering the cave.
This cave was much better lit and we were again given some information about the history of the caves along with a little Maori history, before being allowed to tour the cave. It was great that there was plenty of opportunity for us to chat individually to the guide and ask any questions we wanted. The whole tour probably took no more than 45 minutes which I felt was good from the kids’ point of view as they had just started to get a little tired towards the end of the tour.
All in all Waitomo caves is a great day out and definitely catered to all ages.
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