Water activity

Te Anau: Glowworm Caves Guided Tour

Activity provider: RealNZ
Water activity

Te Anau: Glowworm Caves Guided Tour

Activity provider: RealNZ
Likely to sell out

From US$ 61.87 per person

Likely to sell out

Begin with a calm cruise across Lake Te Anau, before travelling through the caves by path and small boat. Deep inside the caves thousands of glowworms inhabit a silent hidden grotto.

About this activity

Free cancellation
Cancel up to 24 hours in advance for a full refund
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Covid-19 precautions
Special health and safety measures are in place. Check your activity voucher once you book for full details.
Duration 135 minutes
Check availability to see starting times.
Live tour guide


  • Enjoy a return scenic cruise on Lake Te Anau
  • See the glow worms in pitch black darkness
  • Learn about the rock formations in the caves
  • Listen to the roaring water flowing through the caves
  • Learn about the unique flora of the region on an optional short guided forest experience
Full description
Experience a mysterious underground world of rushing water before drifting in darkness beneath the luminous shimmer of hundreds of glowworms.  Your trip to the Te Anau Glowworm Caves begins with a cruise to the western shores of Lake Te Anau. At the entry to the caves, view the informative displays and learn about this geological wonder before you head underground. On the tour of the caves, your friendly guide will point out the highlights and share their knowledge of the caves and its history. This underground world is astonishingly beautiful. The cave are 12,000 years old which by geological standards is still very young and they are still being carved out by the force of the river that flows through them. The result is a twisting network of limestone passages filled with sculpted rock, whirlpools and a roaring underground waterfall. Deep inside the caves, beyond the roar of the water, you will be taken by small boat into a silent hidden grotto inhabited by thousands of glowworms, unique to New Zealand. In the subterranean darkness, they produce a glittering display that is nothing short of extraordinary.
  • Guided tour through the caves
  • Beautiful scenic cruise from the meeting point to the caves entry point
  • Various language handouts in English, German, Portuguese, Japanese and Chinese
    Not suitable for
    • People with mobility impairments
    • Wheelchair users

    Select participants and date



    Meeting point

    Visitor Centre, 85 Lakefront Drive, Te Anau, New Zealand.

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    Important information

    What to bring

    • Comfortable shoes
    • Insect repellent
    • Weather-appropriate clothing

    Not allowed

    • Cameras

    Know before you go

    • Please note that a reasonable agility level is necessary as some bending is required due to low cave entrances and steps being involved
    • This tour is not suitable for wheelchair passengers or heeled shoes
    • This tour is not suitable for infants
    • Light refreshments are available to purchase from the Cavern House and on the Luminosa. Complimentary tea and coffee is available at Cavern House
    Customer reviews

    Overall rating

    4.7 /5

    based on 378 reviews

    Review summary

    • Guide
    • Transportation
    • Value for money
    • Safety

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    The scenic boat trip taking us to the cave was fun and informative, and there was lots of interesting information at the caves. The cave trip transitioned from thunderous water rushing all around to silent darkness with only the glow of the worms on the ceiling. It was truly awe-inspiring.

    March 16, 2023

    Something I would have never ever considered doing, but was honestly a once in a life time opportunity. As recommended by the tour guides, go in the summer months. The cruise was smooth, and relaxing, and to my surprise, we saw millions of glow worms in the caves. Highly recommend for those in Te Anau. The cave can be a little narrow, and there is a bit of bending to do at the start. But didn’t ruin the experience at all! The cruise inside the cave, to the see the glow worms was indescribable. Genuinely one of the best sights I’ve seen.

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    March 13, 2023

    A very special experience- unique to New Zealand. Lake Te Anau is beautiful and the trip across it to the caves was a tour in itself. The boat was not overcrowded (although fully booked) with room to move around/go outside. At the caves we were split into groups none bigger than 14. The cave journey was mesmerising and a talk afterwards told us everything we could possibly want to know (and more!) about glow worms. Wrap up warm as cold & windy on boat and cool in caves.

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    March 3, 2023

    Product ID: 126038