TRAVEL
01/21/2014 07:18 am ET | Updated Jan 25, 2014

New Zealand Has A Cave Full Of Glow Worms, And You Should Go Inside It

Instagram/kimarth

Imagine you're floating on a small wooden boat through a damp cave. It's completely dark inside, save for dots of light from the bodies of a thousand teensy blue insects. Their electric-looking selves create a Milky Way of color above your head.

No, you're not dreaming. You're in Waitomo, New Zealand.

The Waitomo Glowworm Grotto is home to Arachnocampa luminosa, a species of glowworm that lives only in New Zealand. An old Maori tribesman named Tane Tinorau discovered the cave in the 1800s, and he began offering tours to visitors in 1889.

On today's tours of Waitomo, you'll float through 250 meters of majestic caverns: the Catacombs (an entrance to the cave network), the Banquet Chamber (where olden-day visitors gathered for meals), and the Cathedral (where famous choirs have performed, due to its killer acoustics). You'll finish with a glimmering finale in the Glowworm Grotto, which feels like another universe entirely.

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