New Zealand's caves, grottos and native forests form the perfect home for glow worms, a type of insect that glows in the dark.

Northland & Bay of Islands
Waipu Caves, Northland & Bay of Islands

Glow worms can be found throughout the country, and are often spotted in damp, overgrown places – the banks of lakes, rivers and forest undergrowth are prime places to spot their glowing blue-green lights. Guided night time kayaking, hiking or boating trips are great ways to get to the right places to see them.

Tucked away in Northland, the Waipu Caves are home to a population of glowworms that thrive in the darkness of the limestone formations. 

Three hours’ drive from Auckland, the Waitomo Caves offer one of the best glow worm experiences in the country. Take a boat ride underground to experience the magic of thousands of these tiny creatures lighting up the cave roof above you like a star-studded sky.

Glide through the serene waters of Te Anau Glowworm Caves as glowworms light up the darkness, creating a truly magical ambiance resembling a starry night sky. If you're looking for a unique above-ground experience, visit the Hokitika's The Glow-worm Dell(opens in new window) on the West Coast of the South Island. Stroll through the dell at night and be enchanted by the glowworms twinkling among the native bush.

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