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Waitomo

Food & Drinks

Our most recommended Waitomo Food & Drinks

From Auckland: Hobbiton & Waitomo Caves Day Trip with Lunch

1. From Auckland: Hobbiton & Waitomo Caves Day Trip with Lunch

Join this tour to visit two of New Zealand's most iconic and famous attractions, the Hobbiton Movie Set and the Waitomo Glowworm Caves, in a day trip from Auckland.  After pickup from your central Auckland hotel, travel south over the Bombay Hills for panoramic views of the Waikato Region and the scenic Hauraki Plains. Arrive at The Shire's Rest in Matamata, the home of the Hobbiton Movie Set. Your guide will help you skip the crowds so you can explore the Movie Set on an official 2-hour tour. Be escorted through the 10-acre site and learn fascinating details of how the Hobbiton Movie Set was created.  See Hobbit Holes, The Green Dragon Inn, and The Mill. Savor a complimentary specially-brewed beverage at The Green Dragon Inn.  Afterwards, travel to the mesmerizing Waitomo Glowworm Caves, where you'll enjoy a Kiwi-style lunch at The Homestead in Waitomo. On the way, share stories from Hobbiton and interact with your fellow travelers.  Glide silently by boat in the world famous caves and be amazed by the thousands of magical glowworms.  Your guide will likely be a descendant of the Maori Chief who originally explored the Caves and can share with you the remarkable history of the area. Walk through the majestic Cathedral Cove, famous for its acoustics. The return trip takes you through some of New Zealand's most beautiful countryside before following the majestic Waikato River northwards part of the way back to Auckland. You will pass Taupiri with its very sacred Maori burial ground. The day concludes with your return to your accommodation.

Waitomo Caves Black Abyss Ultimate Caving Experience

2. Waitomo Caves Black Abyss Ultimate Caving Experience

Go on the ultimate caving adventure at the Waitomo Caves. Satisfy your inner adrenaline junky on this guided tour into the depths of Ruakuri Cave. Zipline through otherworldly glowworms, and splash through underground waterfalls. Check-in in Waitomo where your guide will ensure you are properly equipped and offer some technical instruction before you descend into the underground network of the Waitomo Caves.  Practice abseiling with your guide to ensure you feel confident before abseiling down 35-meters into the seemingly bottomless black depths of the glowworm-studded Ruakuri Cave. Descend deeper with a flying fox zipline that passes through an area that is abundant with glowworms. Prepare to be awed by stunning stalactites and stalagmites that decorate the cavern walls as you traverse through the dark water.  Enjoy adrenaline-fueled fun as you clamber down, float through the canyon, and scramble up waterfalls before resurfacing into daylight. At the end of your exhilarating journey, enjoy a hot shower, hearty soup, and a bagel.  End at the Long Black Café, a great place to sit back, relax and enjoy the high energy atmosphere as excited visitors depart and arrive from their various expeditions. Internet access and merchandise are also available at this point. 

Waitomo: Glowworm Cave 3-Hour Guided Eco-Tour

3. Waitomo: Glowworm Cave 3-Hour Guided Eco-Tour

Get off the beaten track on this intimate 3-hour tour through some of New Zealand's natural wonders. Start with a brief walk through native bush and the scenic Mangapu gorge.  Hike through beautiful native New Zealand forest, wade through freshwater streams, climb over boulders, and explore untouched limestone caves and spectacular rock formations. Enjoy the mesmerizing glowworm displays in privately owned caves that remain unspoiled by paths or electric lights.  Finish up your tour with a shower, a hot cup of coffee or tea, and some light refreshments. 

Auckland: Hobbiton Movie Set and Waitomo Small Group Tour

4. Auckland: Hobbiton Movie Set and Waitomo Small Group Tour

The tour starts with pickup from Auckland city, where the adventure begins as you drive through the stunning Waikato countryside, the most extensive farming area in the world, on a fully guided journey to Hobbiton. Along the way, don’t forget to take advantage of the photo opportunities as you admire the stunning natural landscapes all around of beautiful mountains and farmlands. After the drive, arrive at Alexander Family Sheep Farm and Shire's Rest, the entrance to Hobbiton, and marvel at the thousands of sheep that live here. While you’re here, grab a bite to eat, a coffee, or enjoy an ice cream to cool off while your guide collects your tickets to the movie set. Next, hop on board one of the big green Hobbiton buses to depart on your two hour fully guided tour of this amazing 12-acre movie set with a professional Hobbiton guide to ensure you get the most out of your visit. During your tour trip into the lush pastures of the Shire, visit 44 hobbit holes, see amazing gardens, hear secrets and stories about the making of the movies and finish your LOTR experience with a cold beverage at the famous Hobbiton pub, The Green Dragon Inn. After your LOTR experience, it’s time to head west towards the stunning Waitomo region. Along the way admire the incredible hydro dams, beautiful farmland, race horses and the Kiwiana capital of New Zealand. Before arriving at the caves, stop by Waitomo homestead for lunch, and a little surprise too. Once in Waitomo, explore the ancient and amazing caves and marvel at the many cave formations including Stalactites, Stalagmites, and Lime Columns before descending even further underground for your Glowworm Grotto experience. Board your glow-worm boat for a cruise on the grotto river with thousands of glowworms sparkling above you. Unique to New Zealand for over 120 years, Waitomo Glowworm Caves are a must see for any traveler. On the guided trip back to Auckland the sights continue with New Zealand's longest river, Huntly power station and the Maori Queens’ burial site.

From Auckland: Hobbiton, Rotorua & Waitomo Caves Day Trip

5. From Auckland: Hobbiton, Rotorua & Waitomo Caves Day Trip

Visit the Hobbiton Movie Set, Rotorua, and Waitomo Caves in one day on a fully-guided tour from Auckland. See three of North Island’s iconic sites in one attraction-filled day. Be ready and waiting at your hotel in time for your specified pickup time. Travel from Auckland to Hobbiton through Waikato. On arrival, you’ll be guided through the picturesque twelve-acre site and given fascinating details of how the movie set was created. The official tour concludes with a complimentary drink at the Green Dragon Inn. Climb back into the vehicle for the approximately 55-minute drive to Rotorua where you will spend around 1.5-hours.  Arrive at Te Puia where you’ll have lunch. Te Puia is home to the Pohutu geyser, visible from the restaurant. You will get great views of the geyser and thermal valley from the restaurant and a good photo opportunity. The tour does not include admission to Te Puia or time in the thermal Reserve, but does include a tour of other key areas of Rotorua such as the lakefront, and government gardens. After Rotorua drive to the world-renowned Waitomo Caves where you’ll enter the caves on foot and ride out in a small boat. Above your head will be thousands of tiny glowworms radiating their unmistakable luminescent light as an expert guide provides informative commentary. 

From Auckland: Two-Day Rotorua, Hobbiton, Waitomo Caves Tour

6. From Auckland: Two-Day Rotorua, Hobbiton, Waitomo Caves Tour

Join this overnight all-inclusive tour from Auckland and experience the Central North Island's most iconic attractions at a leisurely pace.  Take guided tours of Hobbiton and Waitomo Caves. Discover the Waiotapu Thermal Wonderland and the thermal areas and geysers of Te Puia. Experience a Maori cultural evening with a meal and concert.  At the end of the two days, you will return to your hotel in Auckland or a different location in the central area, if specified. Most of the transport is supplied in Mercedes minibuses with luxury seating. Your driver guide will take the time to make sure you enjoy your time on the tour. The largest vehicle seats 15 passengers, but on most occasions your group will be 12 people or less.

From Auckland or Rotorua: Hobbiton and Cave Rafting Day Trip

7. From Auckland or Rotorua: Hobbiton and Cave Rafting Day Trip

Get picked up from your accommodation or an agreed-upon meeting point in Auckland or Rotorua and set off for Hobbiton. Upon arrival, you'll have some time to get something to eat or explore the Shires Rest souvenir shop before joining a two-hour walking tour of the Hobbiton Movie Set, which includes a complimentary drink at the Green Dragon Inn.  Transfer to the movie set on one of the tour operator's buses and hear about how this set was used for all filming of both "The Lord of the Rings" and the "The Hobbit" movies. After the tour, take 15 minutes to relax in the Green Dragon Inn before traveling to Waitomo Caves. Between the two stops, you'll have time to enjoy your picnic lunch. At Waitomo Caves, join a group of up to 12 people on the Black Labyrinth tour, which includes cave tubing and caving in the river that runs through the bottom of the Ruakuri Cave. After arriving at the cave, you will be given a briefing on the art of cave tubing before starting your rafting excursion. Float through a glow-worm grotto, jump over small waterfalls, and enjoy other adrenalin-filled experiences. The tour runs about three hours, 1.5 of which are underground.  Rejoin the main transport for the day and travel to your drop-off destination. On some occasions, the activities may be reversed. After you have completed the final activity, you will be taken to Auckland or Rotorua. You can start and finish in the same place, or choose to make this a one-way journey beginning or ending in Auckland or Rotorua.

Auckland: Hobbiton & Waitomo Bus Tour with Festive Lunch

8. Auckland: Hobbiton & Waitomo Bus Tour with Festive Lunch

Visit two of New Zealand's most iconic and famous attractions, the Hobbiton Movie Set and the Waitomo Glowworm Caves, on a hassle-free tour by premium bus from Auckland.  Relax in the comfort of a premium bus with free Wi-Fi as you begin your journey. Travel through picturesque scenery as your friendly and experienced guide shares local insights with you. At the Waitomo Glowworm Caves, enjoy a 45-minute guided tour. You’ll walk in and float out, marvelling at the sparkling galaxy of blue lights on the silent boat ride through Glowworm Grotto – a subterranean cavern lit by thousands of tiny glowworms. Your next stop is the iconic Hobbiton Movie Set. Enjoy a sumptuous buffet lunch fit for a Hobbit, served up in the festive party marquee beside the Green Dragon Inn. After lunch, your Hobbiton guide will greet you and take you on a magical journey to Middle Earth. Learn insights behind the making of the movies, pose for photographs outside hobbit holes, and sip a specially brewed beverage at the Green Dragon Inn. You’ll have some free time in the rural town of Matamata before the return trip to Auckland.

From Auckland: Small-Group Hobbiton and Waitomo Day Tour

9. From Auckland: Small-Group Hobbiton and Waitomo Day Tour

After pickup from your inner city Auckland accommodation, travel south over the Bombay Hills to the rich farmland of the Waikato region. Your driver guide will provide commentary on the way to Hobbiton with insights into the areas you are travelling through, along with some background to The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit movies. On arrival at Shire’s Rest, embark on your Hobbiton movie set tour. This location is the largest “green set” in the world and the only part of the set remaining in New Zealand. See 44 hobbit holes, the Mill, the double arch bridge, and the party tree. At this stunning location you can take a photo at the gate to Bilbo’s house, “Bag End”, whilst looking out over the whole set to the hills in the distance. The tour ends with a visit to the Green Dragon Inn for a drink. Following your drink, you will be treated to a delicious lunch at the Shires Rest Cafe. There is time for shopping before your tour continues to Waitomo. On arrival in Waitomo, join a 45 minute guided tour of the incredible Waitomo Glow Worm Caves. Discover an ancient world 30 million years in the making. Enjoy the delicate cave formations and be wowed in the Cathedral, before taking the iconic boat ride through the glow worm grotto (subject to water levels). Marvel in silence at thousands of magical glow worms, which are unique to New Zealand, before exiting the cave. After your tour at Waitomo, return to Auckland. Enjoy an afternoon tea stop on the way, at your own expense.

From Aukland: 18-Day North & South Island Tour with Guide

10. From Aukland: 18-Day North & South Island Tour with Guide

Day 1 - Auckland to Hot Water Beach •Explore Cathedral Cove •Relax at Hot Water Beach; by digging your own spa pool. Day 2 - Hot Water Beach to Waitomo •Hike through the Karangahake Gorge •Magical Glowworm Caves in Waitomo Day 3 - Waitomo to Rotorua •Hike through the Ruakuri Reserve •Spend the evening and night at a Māori village where you'll learn about the history and culture of the locals. •Opportunity to visit Hobbiton (not included) •Immerse yourself into Maori culture and history by exploring Rotorua. Day 4 - Rotorua to Tongariro National Park via Taupo •Walk the Huka Falls walkway •Soak under a waterfall or in the naturally heated rock pools at Spa Park. Day 5 - Tongariro National Park •Hike the Tongariro Crossing; one of New Zealands best one day hikes (shuttle not included) •Go skiing or snowboarding on Mount Ruapheu (equipment not included) Day 6 - Tongariro National Park to River Valley •Hike the Taranaki Falls walk •Spend the day at River Valley Lodge; nestled on the Rangitikei River •Go white water rafting on the Rangitikei River or Horse trekking (not included) •Enjoy an organic group roast dinner. Day 7 - River Valley to Wellington •Buzzing city vibes in the capital Wellington Day 8 - Wellington to Kaikoura •Inter-Island transport across the Cook Strait; one of the most enjoyable and beautiful ferry journeys in the world •Wine tasting in the Marlborough region •Visit Kaikoura Seal colony. Day 9 - Kaikoura to Christchurch •Hike the Kaikoura Peninsula Walkway •Enjoy the amazing panaramic views of Kaikoura •Discover hidden gems of Christchurch in a city street art trail Day 10 - Christchurch to Lake Tekapo •Marvel at the stars at the Dark Sky Project, Lake Tekapo. •Visit the The Church of the Good Shepherd. •Hike up Mount John for panoramic views of the surrounding mountains and lakes. Day 11 - Lake Tekapo to Mount Cook (return) •Spend the day at Aoraki/Mt Cook National Park. •Hike the Hooker Valley track to Hooker Lake. Day 12 - Lake Tekapo to Queenstown •A buffet dinner with panaramic views of Queenstown at the Skyline Stratosphere Restaurant. Day 13 - Queenstown free day - Have the whole day to yourself and explore the wonders of Queenstown. Day 14 - Queenstown to Glenorchy day trip - Today we'll cruise past the lake, soaking up the views and onto Glenorchy where we will do some short walks. Day 15 - Queenstown to Wanaka •Roys Peak hike (6 hour return); take in breathtaking views over Lake Wānaka (only accessible November to May) •Mt Iron hike (alternative to Roys Peak); providing 360-degree views of the The Pisa range. •Visit the famous Wanaka tree Day 16 - Wanaka to Franz Josef •Thunder Creek falls in Mt Aspiring National Park. •Lake Matheson; famous for mirror views of Aoraki/Mount Cook. Day 17 - Franz Josef •Design and carve your own Greenstone jewelry in a West Coast workshop (included) •Walk the Glacier valley walk in Franz Josef Day 18 - Franz Josef to Christchurch •Scenic hikes across Arthurs Pass •Walk the Castle Hill track. •Devils Punchbowl waterfalls.

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What people are saying about Waitomo

The tour is fabulous! Visit several of New Zealand's North Island's top tourist attractions with engaging commentary from your guides. The staff of the company is most charming! If there is any problem on any of the days of the tour with any of the activities that are planned, they reorganize it so that you can enjoy each of them. In addition, they make your vacation as easy as possible by picking you up and dropping you off wherever you ask them! Regarding the tour itself, transportation is in very comfortable minibuses. The accommodation is in a wonderful hotel, with all the comforts you can expect (it even has a spa, although it is not included in the tour). Each and every one of the activities that are included are unforgettable experiences and I could not keep just one. Spectacular landscapes and adorable people! In general, many incredible emotions running through your body at the same time! One of the best tours I've booked in my entire life!

What we liked about this tour was the small group, and the shuttle bus that took us around, that also included a hotel pickup! Our driver was incredibly accommodating and helpful - even going so far as to take some awesome photos of us and dropping us off where we wanted at the end of the tour. The Hobbiton Experience was absolutely fantastic, and am so glad that I also got the additional Waitomo Cave experience that was in the same day! These experiences are definitely bucket-list items, and you won't regret choosing this company to take you !

Well organised and run tour. Our guide Mike was very friendly, knowledgeable and helpful throughout the whole day, making sure everyone got the best possible experience. Highly recommended!

This was a truely amazing experience, so amazing to see Hobbiton and sing a song in the Waitomo Caves. Well worth the time to go to visit.

Great experience with great guide - Mike! Highly recommended