The amazing nature in New Zealand. Glowing cave in New Zealand. Imagine stepping into a dark cavern adorned with thousands of glowing lights flickering from up above.
With no battery-operated fairy lights or hidden special effects, this magical scene is au nature. Find this magical spectacle in New Zealand, deep in its many caverns and grottos, and discover a world of bioluminescent glow worms that glimmer in the darkness.
From 300-million-year-old limestone caves to formidable canyon walls, glow worms can be found in many New Zealand natural wonders. We’ve put together a curated selection of where to spot these unique critters and insider tips for a front seat to Mother Nature’s spectacular light show. Glow worms, despite their name, aren’t worms at all! Glow worms are beetles belonging to the family Lampyridae, commonly known as fireflies or lightning bugs.
These beetles emit a bioluminescent light to communicate with other beetles, attract mates, or lure prey into their web. Male glow worms look like beetles with their hand-winged case. They are also of a smaller size than their female counterparts. The wingless, larvae-like appearance of adult female glow worms gives these beetles their “worm” moniker. Though both male and female may exhibit bioluminescence, female glow worms emit a stronger glow of yellow, green, or orange light to attract their mate.