The Riwaka Caves are a series of limestone caves located in the Riwaka area of the South Island of New Zealand. These caves are known for their unique underground formations, including stalactites and stalagmites, and they have a rich cultural significance, as they have been used by Maori people for centuries.
The caves are located in the Riwaka Resurgence Reserve, a conservation area managed by the Department of Conservation (DOC) that protect the underground water system that feeds the Riwaka River.
The Riwaka Caves are open to the public and they are accessible through guided tours. The tours usually take about an hour and they include a short hike to the caves and a guided walk through the underground formations. Visitors will learn about the history and geology of the area as well as the cultural significance of the caves. The tours are suitable for all ages and skill levels, making it a great option for families and groups.
Riwaka Cave Diving
Cave diving is also possible in the Riwaka Caves, but it requires advanced skills and experience. Cave diving is a specialized type of diving that requires a different set of equipment and training. Cave divers must have a cave diving certification and should be familiar with the specific hazards of cave diving, such as low visibility and tight spaces. Divers should only attempt cave diving under the guidance of a professional cave diving instructor.
Location of Riwaka caves
The Riwaka Caves are located in the Riwaka area of the South Island of New Zealand, in the Tasman district near the town of Motueka. The easiest way to get there is by car, as the caves are not easily accessible by public transportation. If you’re coming from the north, you can take State Highway 60 from Nelson to Motueka and then follow the signs to Riwaka. If you’re coming from the south, you can take State Highway 1 from Christchurch to Kaikoura and then take State Highway 63 to Motueka, and follow the signs to Riwaka.
Once you reach the Riwaka area, look for the signs directing you to the Riwaka Resurgence Reserve, where the cave is located. Alternatively, you can also book a guided tour that includes transportation to and from the caves.
Tours and diving trips
It’s worth noting that the cave tours and diving trips are guided by professional and authorized companies, so it’s recommended to book in advance and check the availability of the tours and diving trips. Also, be prepared for the hike and the cave tour, wear comfortable shoes and bring a jacket as the cave temperature is usually cool.
Visiting the Riwaka Caves is an exciting and unique experience that offers the chance to explore underground formations, learn about the rich cultural history of the area, and for the more adventurous, even try cave diving. The caves are accessible to visitors of all ages and skill levels, and the guided tours are a great way to learn more about the caves and their significance. If you’re planning to visit New Zealand and you’re looking for an exciting and unique adventure, the Riwaka Caves are definitely worth a visit.