SUNDAY, FEBRUARY 1, 2015: GLOWWORMS

Woke up bright in early in our car this morning, around 6am. Surprisingly, it wasn’t the worst night’s sleep I’ve had this trip! We were able to confirm with the hostel that they wouldn’t charge us for the night- thankfully. Splurged on some eggs benedict as we debated which activity we would do at the glowworm caves today. We landed on the cheaper, more basic tour of the caves, rather than the full on black water rafting, as we were both eager to move on to Lake Taupo. The tour was only about an hour, but we lucked out with an awesome guide again. Once again, the Kiwi sense of humor came out as he poked fun of our American accents and how we say things funny. We learned all about stalagmites and how the caves were formed. We were brought into the Cathedral of the cave- where performances are often held. He asked people in the group to sing whatever came to their hearts, and a large group of Indian tourists broke out in the most beautiful song- the acoustics were incredible! Apparently they hold a Christmas celebration in this Cathedral every year, where Santa emerges from the top of the cave to give the children gifts. The end of the tour and highlight was when we floated in boats in pitch-black caves, surrounded by thousands of glowworms. It was short & sweet, but I am glad we saw them. We left Waitomo immediately after the tour. Thankfully the drive to Lake Taupo was really straightforward, so we arrived with plenty of sunlight and time to check into our next accommodation. I think the universe was rewarding us for making it through some rough nights of sleep, because we were upgraded from a studio to a suite at the hotel. We have our own little cottage for the next few days- complete with a bedroom, living room, full kitchen, and porch! We went to the grocery store to stock up on a few things, picked up Chinese for dinner, and stayed in for a movie night. It’s the little things like movie nights that you really miss when traveling!