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“Well worth the visit.”
4 of 5 bubbles Review of Nikau Cave

Nikau Cave
Ranked #1 of 1 things to do in Waikaretu
Certificate of Excellence
Attraction details
hamilton, N Z
Level Contributor
20 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
“Well worth the visit.”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 9 June 2014

We headed to the caves on Friday night and stayed in the 1 bedroom apartment as well as a room with 2 more beds. The accommodation is adequate. It was a bit cold with only a small radiator heater and no curtain on a large window. The sheets on the main bed were extremely pilled and you could not sleep directly on them as they were really bad. They should have been thrown away This accommodation was $120 per night for the apartment and an extra $60 for 2 people in the room with beds only. At $120 I would expect a little more comfort.
Anyway on to the positives
The hosts Anne and Philip were a delight. They made you feel very welcome and treated us like we were part of the extended family. They have still retained genuine old fashioned Kiwi hospitality, which is a delight.
The outdoor area around the cafe is lovely and the whole place has a relaxed and tranquil feel.
It is a place that is definitely worth visiting.
As for the caves. We all did the cave the next morning and it is a MUST. It has great formations, lots of variety and the bit of adventure with getting wet and crawling through tight spaces.
We were able to come back to our accommodation and have showers even though we would have been way past checkout time in a more touristy place.
This is something that you should put on your To Do list.
It will not disappoint.

Visited June 2014
Helpful?
1 Thank JBRHam
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Date | Rating
  • English first
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  • Any
English first
Hamilton, New Zealand
Level Contributor
2 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Spectacular Natural Cave Experience”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 27 April 2014

Wow, where do I start? Well we are coming back again at the end of June with family from overseas...

We chose to stay overnight following our trip in the onsite Accommodation. We had a self contained 1 bedroom room with its own kitchen and bathroom. It had everything we needed to cater for ourselves. Very Comfortable. There is also other Accommodation options available with just beds and access to shared bathroom facilities.

Along with the Accommodation, there is the Cafe which is open for Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner. Others from our tour really appreciated this for a warm drink post their caving tour.

Now onto the Caving trip. We started the Hour and a Half trip by putting on our hard hats and grabbing a waterproof torch each. (needed the waterproof bit later...) Before and after the 1 KM long cave we had a brief walk though a working sheep farm.

The fun began as we descended into the cave and turned on our torches... Many thanks to others who wrote reviews on TripAdvisor... We were well prepared with our old cloths to get wet and muddy... We walked through knee deep water, we crawled through sections of shallow water and maneuvered though tight sections of the cave, as we experienced many awesome features of the cave including stalactites, stalagmites and glow worms...

We had our daughters 8 and 9 years old with us and there was a couple in their 60's on our tour. As long as you have a moderate level of fitness / agility you will be fine dong this tour. (see other reviews)

Philip was our Guide for this tour, he did an awesome job navigating us though the cave and explaining different aspects of the cave... Thanks Heaps.

Visited April 2014
Helpful?
1 Thank sturee139
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Auckland, New Zealand
Level Contributor
27 reviews
15 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
“Off the beaten track”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 26 April 2014

Though not on the usual tourist trail, Nikau caves are well worth the extra travel to get to. They are just awesome and Philip our guide was informative, friendly with a good sense of humour. Loved getting down and crawling through some of the knarly bits and the formations and glow worms were incredible. Once out of the caves it is a nice walk over farmland which overseas visitors would enjoy. We will definitely go back. Excellent food at the cafe too

Visited April 2014
Helpful?
1 Thank kiwitreki
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Brisbane, Australia
Level Contributor
31 reviews
13 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 26 helpful votes
“So fun and more than a simple walk”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 23 March 2014

I've done a fair few caves in my life, and just went to Nikau and Ruakuri within 2 days. Completely different experiences so let me explain Nikau a bit. The website indicates that 'some' people will get their clothes wet during a certain section of the walk. For the time that I went (and subsequent water table) my shoes were immediately water-logged, and then I was wading through about 3 ft of water for a time. It's not cold, but there is a section or two that if you're claustrophobic you'll need to deal with that.
The guide I had was quite amazing and patient, though kept a moderate pace to discourage dawdlers. Good information and a sense of humor.
I will say that I am quite a large woman and had some issues here and there. I was forced to military-crawl for a bit. But it was expected that I went into the walk well-informed and chugged through it. Note there is a slight hill to climb at the beginning and a fat-busting one at the end. A testament to the guide and other people on the tour that I didn't feel overly uncomfortable or stressed, and hopefully didn't impede the group too much.

Great tour, would recommend for anyone wanting to get a little dirty but not quite to the spelunking & carabiner level.
Very cost-effective compared to what you go through at Waitomo caves.

Recommend you wear ratty shoes and clothes that will come out wet and dirty -- and maybe torn.

Visited March 2014
Helpful?
3 Thank where_to_next1311
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Melbourne, Australia
Level Contributor
10 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
“Wow!!!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 7 March 2014

The best places you visit are not touristy and not expensive. They are real, authentic and unique!
It was not easy to get there but definitely worth the effort!

Visited March 2014
Helpful?
Thank singerlea
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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