Waitomo Caves Discovery Centre
The award-winning Waitomo Caves Discovery Centre is located in the heart of Waitomo village. It is one of the best special interest museums in New Zealand and possibly one of the best cave interpretation centres in the world.
Our must-see centre explores the above and below ground treasures of Waitomo. We feature a multi-media show called Arachnocampa Luminosa that describes the life-cycle of the New Zealand glowworm. Displays include the formation of karst (limestone) landscapes and caves, local history and culture, an impressive collection of cave fossils and moa bones and a cave crawl challenge for the adventurous.
The Waitomo Caves region has a unique mix of history and heritage and people of all interests and backgrounds form a backdrop to this vital, energetic, small rural community that has developed its own colourful and interesting history.
Our constantly growing collection includes an extensive collection of fossil skeletons uniquely preserved for thousands of years in the stable cave environment. Caving memorabilia keeps us in touch with the stream of colourful, intrepid and very interesting people who have travelled from every corner of the world to explore the caves of Waitomo. The centre preserves these items and thus the stories and experiences of the Waitomo Caves people.
The Discovery Centre also houses the Waitomo i-SITE, the Waitomo Education Service, a souvenir shop, a post shop, luggage storage, internet access, photocopying and phone top ups.
It is open every day of the year except Christmas Day.
- 26th December to end of February: 8:30am – 6:30pm* daily
- 1st March to end of Easter weekend: 8:45am – 5.45pm* daily
- End of easter weekend to 1st April: 9.00am – 5:30pm* daily
- 1st April to start of Labour weekend: 9:00am – 5:00pm* daily
- Start of Labour weekend to 24th December: 9.00am – 5:30pm* daily
*(Times may be subject to change throughout the year)