Te Anau Glowworm Caves
Te Anau Glowworm Caves
4.5
About
Visit the Te Anau Glowworm Caves - an underground network of limestone caves lit by hundreds of glowworms. In the darkness they produce a glittering display. Carved out by the force of the river, the underground world is surprisingly beautiful with whirlpools and roaring waterfalls. Begin with a scenic cruise across Lake Te Anau and then our nature guides will take you in groups through the caves and then in a small boat into the grotto.
Duration: 2-3 hours
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  • Tim K
    113 contributions
    4.0 of 5 bubbles
    Not your usual worms
    This is a pretty limited tour, but it is not something you can do at home, so going to one of these (several around New Zealand) is probably sensible, although not cheap. There is a boat ride across Lake TeAnau and then a lecture about the glowworms at the center before going into the cave in small groups. The cave walk is confined at the beginning, but roomy once inside. There is rushing river, stairs to climb with some worms en route and it is pretty dark but safe. At end you board a small boat in dark (to become light adapted) and are puled around a limited area to see the glowing worms. then you return. the views from the lake are nice, but not really different form on shore.
    Thanks for taking the time to leave a review and for coming to visit these unique glowworms during your visit to New Zealand :)
    Written 16 May 2023
    This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
    Visited March 2023
    Written 30 April 2023
  • Brent E
    4 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Amazing cave experience
    Wasn't expecting much from the Te Anau Glowworm Caves tour, but the reality far exceeded my expections. I've visited a lot of caves and while I have seen better glowworm displays and there are no decorations, this was one of the best cave experiences I have ever had. Walking up a solution tube on a grate a couple of feet above an active stream was just amazing, then it opens out into a larger cavern with a stunning waterfall that you climb up and around to reach the short boat ride in the dark to see the glowworms. The caves had been closed for the last week due to flooding, so we where really lucky and the creek was at its most boisterous. Absolutely stunning.
    We're delighted to hear that the Te Anau Glowworm Caves tour is the best cave experience you have had and that you found them stunning! Thank you so much for your fantastic review.
    Written 14 December 2023
    This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
    Visited September 2023
    Travelled with family
    Written 2 October 2023
  • Joel K
    Vancouver, Canada3,602 contributions
    4.0 of 5 bubbles
    Great tour of the Caves. Great tour guides
    We went on the Real NZ tour of the Glow worm caves. Easy going and interesting tour of this iconic NZ experience. The tour guide was knowledgeable and interesting about the caves and the history.
    Thank you for your great review of the Te Anau Glowworm Caves! We're thrilled that you found the tour informative and enjoyed learning about the history of the caves.
    Written 14 December 2023
    This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
    Visited April 2023
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 29 October 2023
  • Carol M
    1 contribution
    4.0 of 5 bubbles
    Magical experience. Quite unreal.
    The whole trip was well organised. There was a guided tour boat trip on Lake TeAnau, a screen show about the glow-worms, complimentary tea or coffee and then we were divided into small groups to be escorted into the cave. While inside, we were seated in the dingy and in silence viewed the spectacular twinkling lights.
    Thank you for your wonderful review of the Glowworm Caves in Te Anau! We're so glad you had a magical experience.
    Written 14 December 2023
    This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
    Visited September 2023
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 12 November 2023
  • Tony W
    Cambridge, United Kingdom454 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Great Trip !!
    This was our first visit to any Glowworm caves, and we were very impressed. It's a busy trip, but extremely well organised. The boat ride along the lake is a nice bonus, with spectacular NZ Fjordland scenery. The cave tour started with a safety briefing and explanation of the origin of the caves. Then a walk into the caves with a guide explaining about the geology etc. It's quite cool, dark & damp so a jacket is well advised. Then it's into a boat for a short river ride in almost pitch blackness - except for all the glowing worms on the walls & ceiling. Then its back to the reception area for hot drinks & a talk about the worms - which are much more interesting than we expected !! Highly recommended.
    Thank you for your thoughtful review of the Te Anau Glowworm Caves! We're thrilled that you had a great time and found the experience informative.
    Written 14 December 2023
    This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
    Visited November 2023
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 27 November 2023
  • 927catherinew
    Hamilton, New Zealand19 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    We loved our tour
    Great trip, highly recommended. Boat trip across Lake Te Anau is gorgeous. Lots of young Glow worms when we went which was cool. We had a great guide who was knowledgeable and enthusiastic.
    Thank you for your great review of the Te Anau Glowworm Caves! We're thrilled to hear that your experience was enhanced by our enthusiastic and knowledgeable guides.
    Written 24 January 2024
    This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
    Visited December 2023
    Travelled with family
    Written 3 January 2024
  • Rookie Ching Chong
    2 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Eerily beautiful natural wonder
    Our guide was wonderful. The Te Anau caves are noticeably smaller than the Waitomo caves, but still amazing - both the glowworms in the dark and the underground waterfalls. Boat ride across the lake is a bonus.
    Thank you for sharing your experience at the Te Anau Glowworm Caves with us! We're thrilled to hear that you found our guide to be wonderful and that you enjoyed the boat ride across the lake. Your feedback is greatly appreciated, and we hope to welcome you back for more adventures in the future!
    Written 9 April 2024
    This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
    Visited February 2024
    Travelled with friends
    Written 23 February 2024
  • Cliff S
    Safety Harbor, Florida154 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Very Enjoyable
    The first bit was confusing. We had to low-walk through the opening to the cave and I couldn’t see the glow worms that our guide was pointing out. As soon as we got on the little boat, things improved dramatically. The ceiling and some of the sides of the cave had thousands of little green dots. The presentation after was very well done also. This was a fun way to spend the afternoon in Te Anau.
    Thank you for sharing your experience at the Te Anau Glowworm Caves! While the initial confusion may have been disorienting, we're delighted that the glowworms, beauty of the caves and the presentation afterward made up for it. It's fantastic to know that you found the experience fun and enjoyable overall.
    Written 9 April 2024
    This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
    Visited March 2024
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 3 March 2024
  • Andrew B
    Levin, New Zealand39 contributions
    4.0 of 5 bubbles
    Good experience.
    The boat trip to the caves had a running commentary by one of the boat crew which was informative. We sat on the top deck and there were plenty of opportunities to take photos. Unfortunately, photos were not permitted in the caves but totally understandable. The hosts at the cave tour site provide entertaining and informative detail of what to expect. I was a little underwhelmed perhaps as I had previously visited when I was very young so did not have the same wow factor. The walk was easy, just had to bend down in a couple of places.
    Thank you for sharing your experience at the Te Anau Glowworm Caves with us! We're glad to hear that you found the boat trip to the caves informative, and that you had plenty of opportunities to take photos from the top deck. We understand that the no photography policy inside the caves may have been disappointing, but we appreciate your understanding. We apologise if the experience felt underwhelming compared to your previous visit, but we're glad that the walk was easy for you, with just a few moments of bending down. We hope to welcome you back for more memorable experiences in the future!
    Written 9 April 2024
    This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
    Visited February 2024
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 25 March 2024
  • Jared M
    5 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Stunning
    We had our tour with Sean and he was amazing! So enthusiastic and knowledgeable, any questions he could answer for us. We were lucky with sunshine and a rough lake on the way home which made it so exciting! Great set up with hot drinks and a slideshow before going into the caves loved it!
    We're delighted to hear that you had such a wonderful experience at the Te Anau Glowworm Caves with Sean as your guide! It's fantastic to know that he was enthusiastic, knowledgeable, and able to answer all your questions, enhancing your tour.
    Written 9 April 2024
    This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
    Visited February 2024
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 27 March 2024
These reviews are the subjective opinion of Tripadvisor members and not of TripAdvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Most Recent: Reviews ordered by most recent publish date in descending order.

Detailed Reviews: Reviews ordered by recency and descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as waiting time, length of visit, general tips, and location information.

Popular mentions

4.5
4.5 of 5 bubbles2,569 reviews
Excellent
1,448
Very good
766
Average
255
Poor
67
Terrible
33

lovetheoutdoors061
Oldsmar, FL132 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Apr 2024 • Couples
This is a must do if you are in the area of Lake Te Anau. A 30 minute boat ride gets you to the glow worm caves where you have a guided tour on catwalks then in a boat in the pitch dark. Guide gave us a brief history before the tour started. Maximum of 12 people per tour. Interesting video afterward in the station where they offer tea and coffee. This place is amazing.
Written 15 April 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Lindsay C
3 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2024 • Friends
Very well organised - highly recommend for families. The cave experience was amazing. The boat ride to the caves was also excellent.
Written 1 April 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
We're thrilled to hear that you enjoyed your time at the Te Anau Glowworm Caves! It's great that you enjoyed the caves themselves as well as the scenic boat ride over. Thank you for recommending this as a great trip for families, and we look forward to welcoming you back in the future!
Written 9 April 2024
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Renee S
Colorado Springs, CO6 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2024 • Couples
The glow worms themselves are not the main event in my opinion, but I highly recommend this excursion. First, we had a wild ride across the lake with spectacular views even with fog. There is an interesting explanation before entering the cave. Do not expect an American style tour. Underground, it is narrow and you walk over a roaring underground river on a metal walkway in parts. In other parts, you have to duck down around overhangs. It is pitch black and silent in the cave with the worms, and you have 12 people shoulder to shoulder in a small dory. You have to entirely trust your guide to get you back to the light. A few people who were claustrophobic turned away. Even for the adventuresome, it is a bit tense, but that is what made the tour so extraordinary. Great experience.
Written 29 March 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Thank you for sharing your experience at the Te Anau Glowworm Caves with us! We're thrilled to hear that you highly recommend the trip, despite the unique challenges it presents. It sounds like you had an adventurous and memorable journey, from the wild ride across the lake with spectacular views to the interesting explanation before entering the cave. While it may be tense for some, we're glad to hear that you found the experience extraordinary.
Written 9 April 2024
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Jared M
5 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2024 • Couples
We had our tour with Sean and he was amazing! So enthusiastic and knowledgeable, any questions he could answer for us. We were lucky with sunshine and a rough lake on the way home which made it so exciting! Great set up with hot drinks and a slideshow before going into the caves loved it!
Written 27 March 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
We're delighted to hear that you had such a wonderful experience at the Te Anau Glowworm Caves with Sean as your guide! It's fantastic to know that he was enthusiastic, knowledgeable, and able to answer all your questions, enhancing your tour.
Written 9 April 2024
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Andrew B
Levin, New Zealand39 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2024 • Couples
The boat trip to the caves had a running commentary by one of the boat crew which was informative. We sat on the top deck and there were plenty of opportunities to take photos. Unfortunately, photos were not permitted in the caves but totally understandable. The hosts at the cave tour site provide entertaining and informative detail of what to expect. I was a little underwhelmed perhaps as I had previously visited when I was very young so did not have the same wow factor. The walk was easy, just had to bend down in a couple of places.
Written 25 March 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Thank you for sharing your experience at the Te Anau Glowworm Caves with us! We're glad to hear that you found the boat trip to the caves informative, and that you had plenty of opportunities to take photos from the top deck. We understand that the no photography policy inside the caves may have been disappointing, but we appreciate your understanding. We apologise if the experience felt underwhelming compared to your previous visit, but we're glad that the walk was easy for you, with just a few moments of bending down. We hope to welcome you back for more memorable experiences in the future!
Written 9 April 2024
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Missy H
Granbury, TX69 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2024 • Couples
Our guide was rude and had a bad sense of humor. He didn’t make us feel safe while in the caves. As far as the glow worms, there were not many glowing when we went into the cave. The bus ride to the caves was nice.
Written 20 March 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
We're truly sorry to hear about your disappointing experience with our guide and the lack of glowworms in the cave during your visit. Ensuring the safety and comfort of our guests is our top priority, and it's concerning to hear that you didn't feel safe while in the caves. Your feedback is invaluable to us, and we will address these issues with our team to ensure improvements are made. We appreciate you bringing these concerns to our attention, if you would like to discuss the matter further, please do not hesitate to reach out to us at feedback@realnz.com.
Written 9 April 2024
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Jimena V
2 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2024 • Couples
A must do. So worth going on this tour.
Great cruise to the caves with spectacular views. And the caves are just beautiful. Glow worms are so fascinating
Great and informative guides.
Written 16 March 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
We're thrilled to hear that you had such a positive experience at the Te Anau Glowworm Caves! It's fantastic to know that you found it to be a "must do". We're delighted that you enjoyed the cruise to the caves and were captivated by the spectacular views along the way.
Written 9 April 2024
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

JHMTTL
Woodbine, MD1,609 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2024 • Couples
I found the story of the glowworms life rather interesting. You need several minutes in the caves for your eyes to adjust to limited light. Then you could easily see the glowworms.
Written 5 March 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
We're glad to hear that you found the Te Anau Glowworm Caves to be interesting! It's true that adjusting to the limited light in the caves can take a few minutes, but we're delighted that once your eyes adjusted, you were able to easily see the glowworms.
Written 9 April 2024
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Cliff S
Safety Harbor, FL154 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2024 • Couples
The first bit was confusing. We had to low-walk through the opening to the cave and I couldn’t see the glow worms that our guide was pointing out. As soon as we got on the little boat, things improved dramatically. The ceiling and some of the sides of the cave had thousands of little green dots. The presentation after was very well done also. This was a fun way to spend the afternoon in Te Anau.
Written 3 March 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Thank you for sharing your experience at the Te Anau Glowworm Caves! While the initial confusion may have been disorienting, we're delighted that the glowworms, beauty of the caves and the presentation afterward made up for it. It's fantastic to know that you found the experience fun and enjoyable overall.
Written 9 April 2024
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Rookie Ching Chong
2 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2024 • Friends
Our guide was wonderful. The Te Anau caves are noticeably smaller than the Waitomo caves, but still amazing - both the glowworms in the dark and the underground waterfalls. Boat ride across the lake is a bonus.
Written 24 February 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Thank you for sharing your experience at the Te Anau Glowworm Caves with us! We're thrilled to hear that you found our guide to be wonderful and that you enjoyed the boat ride across the lake. Your feedback is greatly appreciated, and we hope to welcome you back for more adventures in the future!
Written 9 April 2024
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

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Te Anau Glowworm Caves - All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go (2024) - Tripadvisor

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