Oh, Waitomo

She’s finally here and we are ready to take on New Zealand. First stop on the trip, Waitomo.

Luckily my mom, or mum as they say here, is pretty incredible. She’s laid back, adventurous, and stoked about whatever she sees around her. We stayed in hostels the whole week, so she could really get the Kiwi-experience.

In Waitomo, we booked a cute and cozy little hostel. We stayed at Juno Hall Backpackers, a little cabin style hostel on a beautiful farm; 360 degrees of pure New Zealand bliss. The host was quite a character, but nothing less that what I could’ve expected. With not many people at the hostel during this time of year, we got the full tour including all of the animals, feeding times, and historical landscapes. My favorite part of the hostel tour was being able to see and feed the two-week lambs on the farm. The host warmed up a few bottles of milk and allowed us to pick up the lambs and feed them dinner. This was perhaps one of the cutest experiences of my life.

Anyways, onto our Waitomo adventure. If you don’t know, Waitomo is known for the glow worm caves. Underneath the green hills lies a labyrinth of caves, sinkholes, and underground rivers. The caves were carved by underground streams pushing through soft limestone over many years. These caves had amazing arachnocampa luminosa, or glow worms, unique to New Zealand. Thousands of these tiny creatures radiate their light to attract food into their web-like structures to reproduce and plant more worms. After taking a 30 minute bush walk over the green pastures, we took a boat ride able to see these creatures light up the cave.

It’s a little disturbing if you think about it. Thousands of worms hanging over your head, creating a light to attract food in order to survive and reproduce. Nonetheless, it was absolutely beautiful. Be sure to take the tour by Spellbound, a less touristy attraction, led by a Maori staff and a smaller group of individuals at a time.

In this adventure, the stay was just as exciting as the day activity. If you ever get the opportunity to, hold and feed a baby lamb. It’s one of the cutest things you can experience. Just be sure it doesn’t poop on you like it did to my mum.

Cheers, all. Be back soon for more.

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