Waitomo, New Zealand
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clock-o60 minutes (Approx.)
ticket-oMobile ticket
commentOffered in: English


Take a CaveWorld tour of Footwhistle Glowworm Cave, part of an extensive cave system in Waitomo. An informative guide leads your small group past stalactites and stalagmites to a candlelit cavern glowing with the tiny lights of glowworms. See the stunning rock formations of Te Anaroa Cathedral and view the bones of an ancient moa during your 1-hour tour of this subterranean marvel. Numbers are limited to 13 people to ensure personalized attention from your guide.
  • 1-hour tour of the Footwhistle glowworm caves at Waitomo
  • Take a short walk through New Zealand bushland and see native birds, ferns and waterfalls
  • Gawk at glowworms, ancient Moa bird bones, stalactites and stalagmites in a majestic underground chamber
  • Learn from your knowledgeable guide about the cave’s history, glowworms and other insect life
  • See the famous Footwhistle flowstone formation, which looks like a frozen waterfall!
  • Small-group tour limited to 13 people provides an intimate and personalized experience with your guide
Make your way to the CaveWorld office in Waitomo for a 5-minute shuttle ride to Footwhistle Glowworm Cave. Next, follow your guide on a short bush walk past lush ferns and a waterfall cascading into a nearby stream. As you enter the dim, candle-lit cavern, your guide details the history of Footwhistle, known to the Maori as Te Anaroa. 

Look up at a starry glow emitted by tiny glowworms before continuing into a side passage where you’ll marvel at the bones of a now-extinct moa — a flightless bird that inhabited New Zealand centuries ago. Creeping through the otherworldly terrain of the Footwhistle cave system, you’ll pass by dripping stalactite and stalagmite formations and a subterranean stream.

Take a seat in the largest chamber and watch as your guide demonstrates how the first cave tours were conducted more than 100 years ago. Be mesmerized by the brief flare of a magnesium torch that flashes on rock sculptures and the dome-shaped ceiling before fading back into darkness. 

After you make your way back to the cave entrance, your 1-hour tour ends with the return shuttle ride to the CaveWorld office.


Viator Traveller's Reviews

8 reviews
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1 Star
, Mar 2018

This was the best tour of a Glow Worm Caves we did! Extremely knowledgeable, interesting and personable guide. We booked this tour for the small group advertised and ended up with just four, so very private tour! No crowds!! Taken by mini bus to a privately owned cave with such a lovely entrance through tropical rainforest. Everything was explained to us throughout the tour, no rush, one to one with even the guide taking photos of us with the glow worms! Finished off with traditional bush tea. I would highly recommend this tour to anybody. Absolutely loved it!!

, Jan 2018

Great overall tour. We were the only ones on the tour so had a personal guide. Tea at the end of the tour was a great little finish.

, Apr 2017

We loved the caves. It was also very nice to learn about the history of the area from our guide. As there were only 12 people, there was plenty of time to take it all in and ask questions - like having a personal guide. The kawa kawa tea ceremony was fantastic and a nice touch.

, Jul 2016

Fantastic and highly recommended. Tour guide was great and the cave was amazing.

, Mar 2016

This was a delightful experience where we got to see amazing caves, cave wetas and the local scenery all with extra information provided by our tour guide Ross who had amazing knowledge of all the flora, fauna and geology and history.
There were crazy queues up the road for other cave tours but this was more intimate and brilliant.
Go it's great fun.

, Dec 2015

Pay careful attention to the description. This is a tour of Footwhistle Cave, not the more famous Waitomo Cave. You'll have to climb down and then back up about 100 steps so skip this one if you've got mobility or stamina problems. Overall, a nice tour though, with plenty of glowworms on display.

, May 2015

Great guide, interesting but underwhelming experience. Worth seeing, but not the best thing you'll see in NZ

, Feb 2017

Excursion au top et en plus le guide est passionné par ce qu'il raconte! On a adoré cette visite!

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Product code: 6370CAVES

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