Aranui Cave

Waitomo's best kept secret

Aranui Cave is set in the Ruakuri Scenic Reserve, 5 minutes drive from the Waitomo Glowworm Caves. It is named after Ruruku Aranui, the local Maori man who first discovered this previously hidden gem back in 1910.

Aranui Cave has a natural cave entrance and is the smallest and most delicate of Waitomo's three main caves. As a dry cave without a river running through it, it houses very little life past its entrance.

However, just inside the entrance is a colony of native New Zealand cave wetas and further into the cave is the most beautiful collection of stalactites, stalagmites, flowstones and decorative formations.

Aranui Cave is a magical, mystical place that is steeped in Maori myth and legend.

As such, it occupies a very special place in the hearts of the people of the Waitomo district. Visit soon to see the richly varied cave formations within close-up view and enjoy an experience you will never forget.


  • Tours depart daily at: 9:30am, 11am, 1pm, 2.30pm and 4pm (bookings are essential).
  • Tours are approximately 1 hour in duration.
  • ​Includes additional 15 minute guided bush walk
  • Learn about New Zealand native trees and plants
  • Described by many as one of Waitomo's most spectacular caves
  • Catch a glimpse of the cave dwelling weta


Aranui cave


  • Aranui cave Tours


    What, where, how and how much. All the key details about your Aranui Cave tour are here.


    What you need to know about our experienced guides, cave formations and guidelines for your visit.


    Aranui Cave was discovered in 1910 by local Maori Ruruku Aranui. Read more about its recent history and why it is considered unique amongst the Waitomo caving experiences.