Anne Marie's Australian Adventure

Follow the Adventures of Anne Marie, Fergus, Cooper and Bean Sidhe in Australia!!

Waitomo Caves – Wet and wild!!

Posted by Anne Marie Serrano on December 4, 2008

At the Waitomo Caves you can see the underground caves with stalactites and stalagmites and the glowworms. There are several different companies that operate these tours; walking tours down through the caves or boat tours where you can cruise down into the caves. We had to do it the cold, wet and hard way – floating down into the cold water river in an inner tube wearing a wet suit and a helmet with a miner’s lamp.

First thing they did was outfit us with our gear and made sure our inner tubes fit. And teach us how to connect once we start floating through the tricky areas of the caves.

Basic training for our cave adventure.

Basic training for our cave adventure.

Does this inner tube make my butt look fat?

Does this inner tube make my butt look fat?

This was the easy part because of course it wasn’t cold or wet yet. The next thing they did was make us jump into the water. Now water activities are not my favorite things to do, never have been, but I hate being cold more than anything. The water was cold and only got colder as we descended into the dark deep caves. We rafted underground rapids, jumped over underground waterfalls and floated through these river caves with millions of glowworms on the ceiling of the caves.  I won’t go into all the info about glowworms but you can click here to learn more about glowworms and the caves.
After awhile I forgot I was cold even though the water got colder the deeper we got into the caves. There were two guides who really were great. They would stop every once and awhile to explain about the caves, the discovery of them, about the worms, and to give us a rest. The pictures they took inside the caves weren’t great – mostly blurry so if you do the trip think about taking an underwater/shockproof camera for youself. You can’t see much because the caves are totally dark hence the miner’s lamps.We made it out alive!! What a thrill!!!cave6
We made it out alive!! What a thrill!!!
The hardest part of the trip was getting into and out of the WET wetsuits and getting out of my inner tube once we got to the cave’s exit. I was so crunched into the tube and I was so tired from paddeling the last several meters to the exit I struggled to get myself out of the tube. This was an exhilarating adventure and it felt good to be alive. Click on this site if you want to see a video about the Black Water Raft. The hot shower and warm soup served at the cafe made me thaw out and feel alive again. I would  recommend this experience, maybe not the wetsuit and inner tube method but definitely a visit to the caves and the glowworms.
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