Waitomo Travel Blog› entry 24 of 117 › view all entries
February 27th, 2007 – by: dan2105
There are several different tour operators running in the small village of Waitomo, each offering something slightly different - ranging from the extreme rafting and caving adventures to a stay-dry-and-see-the wonder-of-the-cave-type scenarios also offered.
Before we met at the base, we checked out the Waitomo Caves Museum to get some history on the caves and learn about these strange neon creatures. They are not actually worms, you know, but maggots in lavae state, using their neon beam to attract their prey - flies etc - and then devour them, much like a spider. In fact, the worms themselves actually look pretty gross.
From the base we were driven to the hill with the deep hole we were to abseil into and cave and raft. We were given some training on how to abseil, which all seemed easy enough.
Then we were faced with a ledge that couldn't be walked across, so, with our torches turned off, we flew down a zip wire into the unknown. The guides were almost complete Kiwi stereotypes - everything was "oh, sweet, man" "Oh, cold water, swell," "yeah, certain death, awesome," and they were keen to try practical jokes on us unsuspecting tourists throughout. I didn't fall for their shenanigans though. Of course not.
Then we began the bulk of the journey on foot, crawling through tiny passages, sliding down jets of water, swimming through tunnels and climbing up waterfalls. It was all great fun, and a little challenging, too. Another "swell" day, "awesome, man", and another thing ticked off the list.
More photos to come... watch this space.
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