Blogs from Waitomo Caves, North Island, New Zealand, Oceania


Oceania » New Zealand » North Island » Waitomo Caves March 20th 2020

Everywhere in New Zealand is a long drive to get to. However, once at the destination it is worth it. Hobbiton was a good 2 hour drive from Auckland and was a much better experience than I had anticipated. I never realised that the movie set for the Hobbit/ Lord of the rings trilogy was so huge. We walked through The Shire with all it's lovely Hobbit Holes and even in the light rain it was a delight. Our guide explained that some of the Hobbit houses are much smaller than others so that Gandalf can stand next to a small one and look huge ,whereas a Hobbit can stand next to a large one and look small. The attention to detail is amazing. Smoke comes out of the chimneys and vegetables and flowers grow in ... read more
Hobbiton in the rain
Hobbit veg garden
Pokeku bird

Oceania » New Zealand » North Island » Waitomo Caves April 11th 2017

We started the day by driving from Rotorua to the Waitomo Glowworm Caves, but not before deciding to squeeze in another Hobbit filming location tour in the early afternoon. We started with the Glowworm caves (unfortunately, they don't allow photography), grabbed a quick bite for lunch, and then drove just under an hour to near Piopio for a 1pm tour. We then raced back in time to explore the Ruakuri cave at 4pm. It made for a busy day, but a thoroughly enjoyable one.... read more

Oceania » New Zealand » North Island » Waitomo Caves April 3rd 2017

Geo: -38.2609, 175.113... read more

Oceania » New Zealand » North Island » Waitomo Caves February 22nd 2017

Bay of Islands to Auckland Left Paihia after a pleasant few days, we are back for one day only on March 7th so hope to do the Treaty Grounds at Waitangi. Before leaving we stopped at the Hurura Falls, we had rowed to these in a Maori war canoe a couple of years ago. Anyway, onward down the West coast of Northland first of traversing the spine of the Northland passing through some spectacular scenery and the townships of Kaikohe, Taheke, Waima before coming upon Opononi with more scenery of huge sand dunes that surround Hokianga Harbour, the fourth biggest in the country. This area remains underdeveloped, just how the locals like it. But for how long!!! From here it's a drive down through the Waipoua and Kauri forests, the forests boast some of the largest ... read more
The Falls2
View from Falls
Opononi view

Oceania » New Zealand » North Island » Waitomo Caves January 23rd 2017

Week three of our New Zealand road-trip started with a 'cross-country' drive from Napier on the East Coast to Whanganui on the West Coast, which even with a lunch break spent near one end of Manawatu Gorge only took about three hours! Along the way we enjoyed some unexpected views of what could only have been Mount Ruapehu (the tallest mountain on the North Island at 2797m) sporting an impressive amount of snow cover. From Whanganui we then headed a further half-hour up the coast, lured by yet another hot tip from Rankers about a campground that sounded almost too good to be true... But as with every other campsite we've found on Rankers, this one turned out to be everything we'd hoped for and more! Situated right behind the rugged surf and black sands of ... read more
Smoke stacks and sea views
The Wind Wand
Goblin Forest

Oceania » New Zealand » North Island » Waitomo Caves March 25th 2016

Pot proti Aucklandu sva zjutraj v New Plymouthu začela z vzponom na znamenito skalo Paritutu. Jasno jutro je poskrbelo za čudovit razgled na morje in mesto, v daljavi pa je kraljevala gora Egmont. Ker naju je čakala kar dolga vožnja proti Aucklandu, sva kar hitro odrinila na pot. Med potjo proti Hamiltonu, ki sva ga že obiskala, sva se ustavila v kraju Waitomo, ki je znan po svojih jamah. V njih živijo svetleči hroščki (Arachnocampa luminosa), ki jim po krivici pravijo "glow worms" (svetleči črvi), saj v resnici spadajo med žuželke in so sorodniki kresničk. V Waitomu sva si ogledala eno izmed jam, v katerih živijo in ki se raztezajo vse do morja. Skozi jamo smo se podali oblečeni v neopren in z gumijastimi obroči, saj smo večino poti preplavali po podzemni reki. Med potjo smo ... read more
New Plymouth in gora Egmont
New Plymouth
V jami

Oceania » New Zealand » North Island » Waitomo Caves January 17th 2016

Em and I arrived safely in Auckland and were met by Mary...I had managed to snag myself an upgrade to business class for $50 (everyone should bid on getting an upgrade with Air New was worth it). Unfortunately due to the flight being late we were behind schedule so after a classy and quick change in the carpark at the airport we were dressed to the nines and ready to hit the town. We got to meet up with some of our APBA family in Auckland - my apologies to G for our excitable spontaneous karaoke session as he was chauffeuring us from location to location...but I am sure it was highly entertaining at the very least! The night ended with a fluro light glove wearing karaoke weilding cab driver - those gloves had to ... read more
Mel heading down to the caves
The morning after
Mary Ritchie and Em

Oceania » New Zealand » North Island » Waitomo Caves January 16th 2016

Our time in New Zealand had to come to an end. From the Rotarua area we headed back to Auckland but had time for one more stop. A few kiwis had told us how great the Glowworm Caves in Waitomo are so we decided we'd stop there for an evening and see the caves the next day. We pulled up at a tiny campsite and went to check in. Oddly, we found that there were no staff. The whole place was run on an honesty box system. We had anticipated being able to pay by credit card but we just managed to scrape together the right cash. The facilities at the site were extremely basic and the outdoor tables were falling apart. It would do for an evening though. We set up the tent, heated dinner ... read more
Waitomo Countryside
Glow Worm Trails
Us in Footwhistle Cave

Oceania » New Zealand » North Island » Waitomo Caves December 29th 2015

Tuesday December 29 – This morning I called and booked a campsite for the night as well as a tour for each of us at Waitomo, an area with several large caves that have glowworms. I wanted to do the black water rafting tour and Jeroen didn’t, and we were lucky to each get the last place on a different tour that started around the same time of day. We drove to the holiday park, checked in, and then went to collect our tickets at the info site we booked from over the phone. After lunch he drove to his tour and I got picked up for mine. His was a walking tour in the Ruakari cave, and mine involved a wetsuit and an inner tube. I had to walk through the cave and jump into ... read more
Ruakari Cave
The glowworms make these strings to catch insect prey
Some of the glowworms, in the light

Oceania » New Zealand » North Island » Waitomo Caves November 21st 2015

This was one of the coolest things I've ever done and probably the second biggest adrenaline rush I've had in my life after skydiving. It's pretty hard to explain and telling you about it or seeing photos of it won't do it justice, but I'll try. It was a 5 hour trip and started with abseiling down a 35m vertical drop through a tiny hole in the cave. You are literally hanging there, repelling slowly and the only thing saving you from free falling is the friction in the rope that you're holding. The hole we had to repel through was so small I barely squeezed through. So scary. We got into the cave, stumbled through the rocks, then got to a zip lining spot. They made us turn our headlights off and we did the ... read more

Tot: 0.082s; Tpl: 0.012s; cc: 8; qc: 102; dbt: 0.0253s; 1; m:saturn w:www (; sld: 1; ; mem: 1.5mb