Thursday, February 18, 2010

New Zealand -- Part 2

From Raglan we drove to Waitomo -- famous for its glow worm caves. P. was adventurous and decided to go black water rafting (rafting on an inner tube in the pitch darkness of caves). I would have done it too, but one of us had to stay with the baby. I don't know much more about the black water rafting, but Peter was hooked. He is willing to travel to the midwest or something when we get back to the States to try it again.

As for us, Michelle, Ali and I went instead to the standard glow worm tour which was beautiful in its own way. The glow worms are actually a type of maggot (doesn't sound as glamourous as glow worm), that have release a sticky string with a phosphorescent glow. This glow attracts insects and that's how they eat. There are thousands (millions?) of these glowing points of light on the roof of the extensive caves in Waitomo. When you are in the caves and look up, it looks like a night sky filled with stars. It's magnificent.

Waitomo Glowworm Caves
(not my pic, we weren't allowed to photograph in the caves)

After the glow worm cave tour, Michelle and I followed a sign from the car park and started hiking to a Waitomo Lookout. The hike was rather steep and led us through a cow pasture up a hill to a lovely view of the rolling hills of Waitomo.
View from Waitomo Lookout Point

From there we went to the "famous" Curly's Bar for some food and drink. The place could have been called Surly's (the staff wasn't too friendly), but I ordered this amazingly delicious moroccan lamp salad. It was my most surprising meal. I was not expecting much from this divey looking restaurant with rugby blaring from 6 tvs around the place, but this absolutely divine dish came out piled high with the most flavorful and tender lamp I've had in my life. So if you're ever in Waitomo and you're in the mood for lamb, I recommend Curly's - surprisingly delicious.


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