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Coal Creek, Greymouth

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Punakaiki Caverns

Located in Punakaiki

The Punakaiki Cavern is a Karst cave, formed with a combination of water and carbon dioxide, carving out the cave from the Oligocene limestone.

Fun for all ages to Explore

The cavern features glow worms, the larvae of a large mosquito-like fly. In order to survive they build traps consisting of vertical hanging threads of silk. The silk thread is studded with sticky droplets of mucous to catch small insects that are attracted by the light. In actual fact they are not worms at all.

Bring a Torch

The Punakaiki Caverns can be fun for all ages to explore. Remember to carry a good torch (and preferably a spare) if you're wanting to go a bit deeper into the caves.

 

Be aware it can also be a bit damp underfoot so wear appropriate footwear.

There are also stalactites in the cavern, formed when calcium carbonate and other minerals, drip from the cavern ceiling over time, eventually creating hanging formations tapering down to pointed tips, resembling solid cones.

Things to Know

Distance - 500m

Difficulty - Easy

Restrictions

  • No dogs

  • No wheelchair access

Price - FREE

Getting There

The cavern is signposted on SH6, 500 m north of the Paparoa National Park Visitor Centre in Punakaiki.

Multi-Day Adventures on the West Coast

SCENIC & ADVENURE

2 Days - Private Guided Tour

Price Includes:

  • TranzApline Train Ride,

  • Guided Tour with On Yer Bike Adventures!

  • 1 Night Accommodation

  • Detailed Itinerary

  • Full Customer Support

From:

$404

$739

Price is per person based on Twin Share Price

EXPERIENCE & DISCOVERY

3 Days - Self-Drive 

Price Includes:

  • TranzApline Train Ride,

  • Guided Tour with On Yer Bike Adventures!

  • 2 Nights Accommodation

  • 2 Day Rental Car Hire

  • Day Pass into Shantytown

  • Detailed Itinerary

  • Full Customer Support

From:

$612

$1018

Price is per person based on Twin Share Price

FUN & TRANQUILITY

4 Days - Self-Drive 

Price Includes:

  • TranzApline Train Ride,

  • Guided Tour with On Yer Bike Adventures!

  • 2 Nights Accommodation Greymouth

  • 1 Night Accommodation in Punakaiki

  • 3 Day Rental Car Hire

  • Day Pass into Shantytown

  • Detailed Itinerary

  • Full Customer Support

From:

$744

$1232

Price is per person based on Twin Share Price