After our time in Rotorua, we drove to Waitomo, NZ.  It was a two hour drive, so I took a turn!

Not too bad! 🙂

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Haven’t I been saying AUS/NZ has the most interesting trees?

We drove to our B&B: Waitomo Caves Guest Lodge.  This is the view from our patio.

We stopped by Roselands for lunch.  They were a few weeks away from their grand re-opening.  They had been just a tourist stop for Japanese tour buses that served lunch.  Now, they were re-branding themselves, with an all-day restaurant, petting zoo, archery, and wedding venue.

The food was so delicious!

Then we got to tour the petting zoo.

SO cute!!

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Later that day we went to the Waitomo Glowworm Caves.  We did Black Labyrinth cave tubing with Black Water Rafting.

There’s streams that run inside the caves.  You take an inner tube, sit in it, and float down the streams.  Sounds peaceful huh?  Not when you’re jumping off five-foot high waterfalls backwards…in the absolute pitch-black darkness!  We had done one jump with our head lamps on, which was scary, but manageable.  The other two in our tour group were two female skydiving instructors.  Our guides said, “We’ve never done this before, but how about we do the next waterfall jump in the dark?”  The girls were like, “Yeah!!”  And I was like, “Uh…” looking at Will for support.  I went third, after the girls.  It was the scariest thing I’ve done!  So proud of myself that I did though! 🙂

Sorry this picture is blurry.  This was taken with our underwater camera (which obviously was wet).

The thing that makes this cave tubing unique is that the cave is filled with glowworms.  When you look at the cave ceiling, you can see tiny green dots of light.  It’s very mesmerizing…but kinda spooky.  The light is actually coming from the digestive tract of baby maggots.  Yikes…a little.

We weren’t allowed to take pictures (you couldn’t anyway…so dark) so I can’t show you what they looked like.  You’ll just have to go and see for yourself!

After the three-hour tour, we got to indulge in a hot shower and piping hot soup and a bagel.

For dinner, we heard about a restaurant that Katy Perry had visited the previous year.

It was a thrill-filled day!  See you later, Waitomo!

(Aren’t the colors just unreal?  No editing done; just pure New Zealand beauty.)

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