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Waitomo Caves Full Day Trip with Option to Add Hobbiton from Auckland

Waitomo Caves Full Day Trip with Option to Add Hobbiton from Auckland

star-4.522 Reviews
Auckland, New Zealand
icon13 hours  (Approx.)
Pickup from select hotels
Mobile ticket
iconOffered in: English
icon13 hours  (Approx.)
Pickup from select hotels
Mobile ticket
iconOffered in: English

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icon13 hours  (Approx.)
Pickup from select hotels
Mobile ticket
iconOffered in: English


Design your own ideal day on the North Island with a full-day tour to Waitomo from Auckland. Ride a boat beneath thousands of twinkling glowworms in the famous Waitomo caves, with the option to tour the nearby Ruakuri cave also or navigate the rapids of the Black Labyrinth on a whitewater rafting adventure. ‘Lord of the Rings’ devotees can add on a trip to Hobbiton to step into the fantastical movie set featuring the hobbit holes of Bilbo and Froto, the Dragon Inn, and the fan favorites. Return to Auckland in the evening, or use the tour as a transfer, ending in Rotorua.
  • Ful-day tour to Waitomo from Auckland
  • See some of the North Island's most popular attractions in one day
  • Ride a boat through the legendary Waitomo glowworm caves
  • Tour the ‘Lord of the Rings’ movie set at Hobbiton (optional)
  • Option to add an additional cave tour or whitewater rafting adventure
  • Customize the day with your choice of activities
  • Finish in either Auckland or Rotorua
  • Great option for those with limited time on the North Island
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Hotels Transfer by air conditioned vehicle
Waitomo activity of choice (The Waitomo Cave option you have selected)
2 Hour Hobbiton movie set tour (IF CHOSEN)
Glowworm Cave Option includes Waitomo Glowworm Caves Only - (45 minute Tour including boat ride)
2 Caves Option Includes Waitomo Glowworm Cave (45 Minute tour) PLUS Ruakuri Caves (2 Hour Tour)
Personal expenses
Hobbiton (Unless Chosen as an option at check-out)
This operator has two meet-up options available. You can either meet at the departure point below or select a location for pick-up.
280 Queen Street , 280 Queen Street, Auckland CBD, Auckland 1010, New Zealand

Our main pick up is at 6:15 am at 280 Queen Street outside the JB HiFi shop. If you want to change to one of the pick ups below please call or email the local supplier with your Viator voucher ready so this can be arranged.

Hmm...we can’t seem to find this place. Please check the spelling, or choose another location.

6:15 AM

Please arrive 20 minutes before your selected start time for pickup. Your operator can coordinate exact time and location.

This activity will end right where it started.Our main pick up point is outside JB HIFI - 280 Queen Street at  6.15am. Please ensure you are waiting 15 minutes prior to pick up time. However, if you want to be picked up from one of the other locations listed below, please call or email the local supplier with your Viator voucher ready so is can be arranged. 6:03 am 6 Hopetoun Street (Verandah Backpackers) 6:05 am 373 Karangahape Road (Haka Lodge). 6:07 am Corner Pitt and Vincent Street (YMCA) 6:09 am 69 Beach Street (Omega Rentals) 6:10 am 80 Queens Street (BNZ) 6:15 am 280 Queen Street (JB Hi Fi) 6:16 am 380 Queen Street (Scenic Hotel) 6:17 am 490 Queen Street 6:18 am 520 Queen Street (Kiwi International) 6:20 am 63 Karangahape Road (Bus Stop) 6:40 am Manukau City - Leyton Way opposite the Mall 6:55 am Bombay Hills - Caltex Service Station 7:25 am Huntly - Main Bus Stop 7:55 am Hamilton Central Bus Stop, 340 Anglesea Street
  • Confirmation will be received at time of booking
  • Child ages 4-14 years old with price 60% of adult
  • Black Labyrinth: Minimum age 12 years old, & minimum weight 45kg
  • Black Abyss: Minimum age 16 years old, & minimum weight 45kg
  • Customers doing Black Abyss and Black Labyrinth options need to bring swimewar, a towel and a warm change of clothes. Wet suit and booties are provided.
  • Not wheelchair accessible
  • Infants must sit on laps
  • Most travelers can participate
  • This tour/activity will have a maximum of 22 travelers
  • OPERATED BY Headfirst Travel
You can cancel up to 24 hours in advance of the experience for a full refund.
  • For a full refund, you must cancel at least 24 hours before the experience’s start time.
  • If you cancel less than 24 hours before the experience’s start time, the amount you paid will not be refunded.
  • Any changes made less than 24 hours before the experience’s start time will not be accepted.
  • Cut-off times are based on the experience’s local time.

Learn more about cancellations.

Traveler Photos

Traveler Tips

  • "I would say bring a light jacket it can be pretty cold down there." See review
  • "Take your own water and snacks/ food if you need!" See review


22 Reviews
2 stars

Reviews by Viator travelers

Showing 1-10 of 22 reviews
What a day!
, Jan 2020
We chose the black-water rafting option at the Waitomo Caves which was awesome, absolutely loved the experience and would highly recommend it! Following this we then went to Hobbiton which was is just stunning (although for our entire tour it was raining and cold, would have been even more gorgeous on a sunny day). The driver was also very friendly and was nice enough to drop us directly to our hotel when we got back to the city. Our only gripes for the day were that we made a random stop half hour out of Auckland for the bathrooms (both on the way out and the way back) which was unnecessary considering we had only 3 of us on the bus. Also, the driver appeared back at the rafting just as we were finishing lunch, so we only had a short time to view/purchase our photos before being rushed off to get to Hobbiton (where we had to wait 30 minutes until our tour time anyway).
icon Response from Host , Jan 2020
Thanks so much for the review, you are so lucky to have experienced the Black Water Rafting! This is such a spectacular trip! Yes, we are on a bit of a tight schedule in order to ensure that we get everyone back to their destination on time.
Great overall experience, but be ready for a LONG day
Anna C
, Dec 2019
Great experience-> Waitomo Glowworm cave was overall ~40 minutes of short walk/ hike and short cruise in glowworm cave. Very beautiful. Need to be able to navigate stairs. No photography allowed. Definitely ADD ON Ruakuri cave-> it was ~90 minute walk/ halk (easy) and FULLY wheelchair accessible. Much more time to enjoy caverns and glowworms. PHOTOGRAPHY allowed. (No flash near worms). Great local guides on both these experiences. Be ready-> it was a full 3 HOURS from my pick up at ~600 am in Auckland (80 Queen Street in front of Bank of New Zealand) until we arrived to first cave sight right at 9. (Very short 5 minute bathroom stop on the way). (Not really traffic, and going full speed ahead---> it's just a LONG trip). These 2 caves are very close together... It's then another ~hour to 1.5 hours to Hobbiton. I'm not a huge fan, but it was worth the add on to not sit around for a couple of hours awaiting return transfer. It was beautiful farm land. Lunch, on your own, and there was no real opportunity for it until at Hobbiton (~215pm... keeping in mind I was picked up at 6am and hadn't eaten breakfast yet as nothing was open in AKL). So, prepare ahead and have breakfast/ lunch packed if that's an issue. There is a small cafe at the Waitomo caves, but it was ~940am leaving there so I didn't think I'd need to grab lunch so soon or wait until so late! ) Take your own water and snacks/ food if you need! It's then took ~2.5 hours to return trip to Auckland from Hobbiton... So, just be prepared. LOTS of time in the mini bus. (When I booked, I am sure it noted to be 2 hours either way and it was definitely 3 hours to first cave and 2.5 hours to drop off in CBD of Auckland from Hobbiton --> For me, VERY worth it. The glowworms were amazing. The transit vehicle was adequate and had AC. The Headfirst guide was fine. Communication via email was prompt and clear and pickups and all happened as had been agreed upon. I recommend!!!
, Jan 2019
Did both caves, the second cave is walk thru and you can take pictures. The guide was great the scenery was fantastic. This is a must see if your in New Zealand.
, Dec 2018
We did the Waitomo Day Trip from Auckland with Hobbiton and Ruakuri as well. It was definitely worth it! We knocked three things out in one day! I highly recommend doing Ruakuri caves as well, because you can take pictures at this cave, and its walking and very expansive! I would say bring a light jacket it can be pretty cold down there. My only qualm was that between Waitomo and Ruakuri we didn't have much time to go to the gift shop and Ruakuri gift shop is not as expansive as the waitomo one. I wish I had more time before we had to go to the next destination. That being said we assumed that Ruakuri would have a nice gift shop, but definitely buy your gifts at the Waitomo one.
Long day. The tour is run by Head...
, Mar 2018
Long day. The tour is run by Head First Travel New Zealand. Our driver guide, Mustafa, was friendly and energetic. He took us to a few extra places of interest. We were given water and snacks in between which was so thoughtful. We did the two caves option. The morning starts off with the 45 min tour of the Waitomo Glowworm caves. Then, you go to the 2 hour Ruakuri Cave tour. You can take photos here. Then we went to Hobbiton. We were early so had a quick lunch there. The Hobbition tour is 2 hours. From there we went back to Auckland. Thanks to Mustafa for a wonderful day!
The Glowworm caves are really...
, Mar 2018
The Glowworm caves are really spectacular and when they turn out all the lights the little worms glowing on the ceilings look somewhat like iridescent blue fire flies. We were in a boat for this part of the tour which ultimately led to the exit. Hobbiton is extremely picturesque, however be prepared for huge crowds. Makes you want to go back and watch the movies.
This was a fabulous tour. Tania our...
Deborah M
, Feb 2018
This was a fabulous tour. Tania our driver was great giving lots of information on Auckland and surrounding areas only negative comment - please dont book tours and relay credit card information while driving - we saw her doing this and considered this very unsafe as you cant watch the road and read a credit card number at the same time - made us uncomfortable. The caves were great and wonderful to see the glow worms and formations. It rained on and off but seemed to rain while we were in the caves so was no big deal. Hobbiton was better than anticipated and the rain stopped just as we started the walking tour - and the sun came out. My husband is a big Hobbit and Lord of the Rings fan and he loved it as did I. Very interesting facts on the tour and our guide was great. Enjoyed the scenery and having a beer at the Green Dragon Inn at the end of the tour. This tour is long but well worth the time and money.
The caves and Hobbiton were...
Rupal M
, Feb 2018
The caves and Hobbiton were excellent. Make sure to see the Ruakuri cave as well, as this is a much larger and deeper cave, so the tour lasts about 2 hours and also has glowworms but allows for photography, unlike the Waitomo cave. Bring a jacket! The Hobbiton movie set is on the Alexander farm and worth a visit even if you've never seen the movies. It is absolutely breathtaking. Green pastures as far as the eye can see. As for the tour itself, it was disorganized. At one point we did not know where our guide was or where to meet him. It also did not allow for any time for lunch until 4pm, and no breakfast or lunch was provided just chips and water only. We left Auckland at 6:15am and returned at 8:45/9pm.
This Waitomo Glowworm Cave tour was...
Leland C
, Mar 2017
This Waitomo Glowworm Cave tour was just great! Our tour guide, Leoni not sure of the spelling, but she is part Maori and very proud and knowledgeable about her heritage, took care of all of our needs efficiently. The boat ride underneath the thousands of glowworm lights in the cathedral domed cave was very peaceful with no photography allowed to distract from the experience. The ride was short, but long enough to satisfy. We were fortunate to have been able to upgrade our tour to also include the tour into the Ruakuri cave, where we were able to see the glowworms close-up and take all the photographs we wanted. After driving the long distance from Auckland, it makes a lot of sense to see both of these caves if you can. The two cave tours really complement each other. After the caves, we had a fantastic lunch at a nearby place called Roselands Waitomo Caves BBQ, where we were served all we can eat BBQ steaks, mussels, fish, and chicken, all made to order. The Hobbiton Movie Set tour was also a must-see in New Zealand. The ranch setting was very large and well-groomed. It was a long day, but this combination tour turned out to be the best event out of all of the tours we took on our cruise through New Zealand.
Bel tour
, Dec 2019
È un tour ben organizzato dove si visitano ben due grotte molto belle e si conclude il giro con il set di Hobbiton. Tutto perfetto tranne il prezzo relativamente elevato tenuto conto che non è compreso il pranzo, nemmeno uno snack.

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