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Cave walk takes 1 hr The cave is 594m long and is one of the regions natural gems. Limestone formations nearby were the setting for the filming of “Narnia: The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe”.

Read what people say in their reviews, this little walk is winner. The reserve is on State Highway 73 between the Broken River road bridge and Craigieburn Forest Park entrance, approximately 90 km northwest of Christchurch.

A great adventure, scouring holes, terraces and small waterfalls while inside the cave. Word of warning though be prepared, lives have been lost here, caving parties should have at least two reliable lights per person plus spare batteries, warm polypropylene or wool clothing, and sturdy footwear.

Watch the water level in the cave. Normally the deepest section (at the first corner from the cave outlet end) is just above waist level on an adult, If there is snow on the hills the water is going to be very chilly on your ..... the water will be near freezing hypothermia is a possibility. If the stream is abnormally high, with the water dis-coloured or foaming, do not attempt to enter. Read the warning signs about entering the cave - remember this is a serious adventure, the cave has claimed lives.

Cave entrance tracks: 30 min return for each track

Two short tracks lead from the reserve carpark to the cave entrances. The track to the upstream entrance goes north, through a diverse karst (limestone) landscape of solution holes, rillenkarren (water-grooved rocks) and sculptured rock formations.
The other track leads to the edge of a terrace overlooking the outflow entrance of the cave. It drops down the face of the terrace to the junction of Cave Stream and Broken River.

When going through the cave, the cave passage meanders and twists in pitch darkness for 594 metres between the two entrances. It takes approximately one hour to go through. There is a three metre waterfall at the inlet end. If care is taken, fit, inexperienced cavers can go through.

Cavers are recommended to enter the cave at the outflow end and walk against the flow of the stream. There are several small waterfalls to climb. To assist climbing out the inlet end of the cave, a rung ladder ascends beside the waterfall. A chain and steps help to get along the overhang ledge to the exit.

This cave walk is not suitable for small children.

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45 reviews with the most recent first, showing page 1 of 4.

Thanks to all the good people working for the NZ Department of Conservation - for all your hard work - making NZ more beautiful, accessable and healthy! Cheers 😍

Bob the genious's avatar

Bob the genious

Ranking: 10/10

Had the bright idea of doing this at the end of March, after a rainy day and night, with a shitty torch in my hand. Some reviews say it is an easy walk but it varies a lot, the water was pretty high and at some point we couldn't get over a waterfall in the middle of the run, tried to climb around it but I fell off like an idiot but luckily I didn't hit anything. The walk Is absolutely amazing HOWEVER please don't go alone and take a fucking headtorch. Really fun to do but it was a bit scary, as someone who did this in not the easiest conditions I can say that it is still doable and can be fun but don't go alone and think well about going in. Water was cold af too. Best thing I did in NZ for me ;)

Reviewed 5 months ago

Car R's avatar

Car R

United Kingdom

Ranking: 10/10

One of the best things we did in NZ while touring South Island.
All the signs give serious warnings about being properly equipped, as long as you are sensible and follow the advice not to go further if the first pool is above your chest you'll be fine -definitely bring a torch, preferable one for your head. A reasonable level of fitness required in that you've to scramble up a couple of bits - a leg up is usually enough though. Worth having a warm layer on but if you don't hang about too long and it's warm outside you'll be grand. A real giggle with friends and take time to look about you, not just at your feet to see where you are going, some people were shooting off past us, I hope they took in the wonder of what was above them.
A fun activity to do outwith the usual organised tours/activities and a pretty unique traverse through a cave. So glad we ticked this one off.

Reviewed 7 months ago and experienced in February 2017

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Emma Philpott's avatar

Emma Philpott

United Kingdom

Ranking: 10/10

The most adventurous walk we did in NZ! You get to walk waist deep in crystal clear flowing water through an underground cave and climb small waterfalls - perfect, pitch black adventure!

Reviewed 9 months ago and experienced in March 2017

Wilhelm Wiechel's avatar

Wilhelm Wiechel

Germany

Ranking: 9/10

A great location, you can walk through a cave, round about 45 minutes. It is dark inside and you need a head torch. The water is a little bit cold but a great experience.

Reviewed 9 months ago

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Kolar's avatar

Kolar

Czech Republic

Ranking: 10/10

Amazing.

Reviewed about 1 year ago and experienced in January 2017

Frank Ryan's avatar

Frank Ryan

Ireland

Ranking: 10/10

Great chance to explore an exciting and fun cave for free! Took all of my family (parents are 60). Walk through a limestone cave with water up to your knees for 45 minutes. All you need is some warm clothes and a torch!

Reviewed about 1 year ago and experienced in February 2017

Thank You - to the thousands of travellers that have contributed to our Top Voted NZ Activities Map - it's free from Rankers.

Stuart  Gange's avatar

Stuart Gange

United Kingdom

Ranking: 9/10

Well organised paths to all features. Not geared up to walk through the cave stream but looks very demanding and not for the faint hearted - would give it a go, if I had the gear!

Reviewed over 1 year ago and experienced in December 2016

Cecile's avatar

Cecile

France

Ranking: 9/10

Just one word: AMAZING. Completely in the dark, in cold water, a good experience and free.

Reviewed almost 2 years ago and experienced in March 2016

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Huon's avatar

Huon

France

Ranking: 10/10

It is really amazing and it is free! 40 minute walk in the dark and beautiful rocks inside with the stream!

Reviewed almost 2 years ago and experienced in March 2016

Floriane Desnoyer's avatar

Floriane Desnoyer

France

Ranking: 10/10

So exciting experience. A bit scary but keep going! Worth it! Do not forget a torch and check the water level before going in.

Reviewed almost 2 years ago and experienced in March 2016

Award-1-24px Congratulations Cave Stream Scenic Reserve cave walk - Craigieburn

Top Ranked NZ Awards 2016 Caving Winner

Jari Kahelin's avatar

Jari Kahelin

Finland

Ranking: 10/10

Really nice cave walk and nice views.

Reviewed almost 2 years ago and experienced in March 2016

Elodie Bardolle's avatar

Elodie Bardolle

France

Ranking: 8/10

It is funny!

Reviewed about 2 years ago and experienced in February 2016

Jan Penicka's avatar

Jan Penicka

Czech Republic

Ranking: 10/10

We wish we knew earlier about the Caves because we missed on near Invercargill. But it is perfect that they are open for the public - especially this one!

Reviewed about 2 years ago and experienced in February 2016

45 reviews with the most recent first, showing page 1 of 4.

Thanks to all the good people working for the NZ Department of Conservation - for all your hard work - making NZ more beautiful, accessable and healthy! Cheers 😍

Bob the genious's avatar

Bob the genious

Ranking: 10/10

Had the bright idea of doing this at the end of March, after a rainy day and night, with a shitty torch in my hand. Some reviews say it is an easy walk but it varies a lot, the water was pretty high and at some point we couldn't get over a waterfall in the middle of the run, tried to climb around it but I fell off like an idiot but luckily I didn't hit anything. The walk Is absolutely amazing HOWEVER please don't go alone and take a fucking headtorch. Really fun to do but it was a bit scary, as someone who did this in not the easiest conditions I can say that it is still doable and can be fun but don't go alone and think well about going in. Water was cold af too. Best thing I did in NZ for me ;)

Reviewed 5 months ago

Car R's avatar

Car R

United Kingdom

Ranking: 10/10

One of the best things we did in NZ while touring South Island.
All the signs give serious warnings about being properly equipped, as long as you are sensible and follow the advice not to go further if the first pool is above your chest you'll be fine -definitely bring a torch, preferable one for your head. A reasonable level of fitness required in that you've to scramble up a couple of bits - a leg up is usually enough though. Worth having a warm layer on but if you don't hang about too long and it's warm outside you'll be grand. A real giggle with friends and take time to look about you, not just at your feet to see where you are going, some people were shooting off past us, I hope they took in the wonder of what was above them.
A fun activity to do outwith the usual organised tours/activities and a pretty unique traverse through a cave. So glad we ticked this one off.

Reviewed 7 months ago and experienced in February 2017

Conservation Campsite Pass

Save up to 70% on campsite fees! Support conservation and experience the natural beauty of NZ. 96 Department of Conservation campsites, one convenient pass.

Get the Pass

Emma Philpott's avatar

Emma Philpott

United Kingdom

Ranking: 10/10

The most adventurous walk we did in NZ! You get to walk waist deep in crystal clear flowing water through an underground cave and climb small waterfalls - perfect, pitch black adventure!

Reviewed 9 months ago and experienced in March 2017

Wilhelm Wiechel's avatar

Wilhelm Wiechel

Germany

Ranking: 9/10

A great location, you can walk through a cave, round about 45 minutes. It is dark inside and you need a head torch. The water is a little bit cold but a great experience.

Reviewed 9 months ago

Top Ranked NZ Deals Pass

Access savings worth hundreds of $$ on Top Ranked NZ Accommodation and Activities for just $1 per day.

Get deals pass

Kolar's avatar

Kolar

Czech Republic

Ranking: 10/10

Amazing.

Reviewed about 1 year ago and experienced in January 2017

Frank Ryan's avatar

Frank Ryan

Ireland

Ranking: 10/10

Great chance to explore an exciting and fun cave for free! Took all of my family (parents are 60). Walk through a limestone cave with water up to your knees for 45 minutes. All you need is some warm clothes and a torch!

Reviewed about 1 year ago and experienced in February 2017

Thank You - to the thousands of travellers that have contributed to our Top Voted NZ Activities Map - it's free from Rankers.

Stuart  Gange's avatar

Stuart Gange

United Kingdom

Ranking: 9/10

Well organised paths to all features. Not geared up to walk through the cave stream but looks very demanding and not for the faint hearted - would give it a go, if I had the gear!

Reviewed over 1 year ago and experienced in December 2016

Cecile's avatar

Cecile

France

Ranking: 9/10

Just one word: AMAZING. Completely in the dark, in cold water, a good experience and free.

Reviewed almost 2 years ago and experienced in March 2016

Camping NZ App Icon

Camping NZ App

Every camping site on your iPhone™, iPad™ or Android™ phone or tablet. Avoid camping penalties using this council approved app. Featuring offline maps.

Download from the App Store Download Android app on Google Play

Huon's avatar

Huon

France

Ranking: 10/10

It is really amazing and it is free! 40 minute walk in the dark and beautiful rocks inside with the stream!

Reviewed almost 2 years ago and experienced in March 2016

Floriane Desnoyer's avatar

Floriane Desnoyer

France

Ranking: 10/10

So exciting experience. A bit scary but keep going! Worth it! Do not forget a torch and check the water level before going in.

Reviewed almost 2 years ago and experienced in March 2016

Award-1-24px Congratulations Cave Stream Scenic Reserve cave walk - Craigieburn

Top Ranked NZ Awards 2016 Caving Winner

Jari Kahelin's avatar

Jari Kahelin

Finland

Ranking: 10/10

Really nice cave walk and nice views.

Reviewed almost 2 years ago and experienced in March 2016

Elodie Bardolle's avatar

Elodie Bardolle

France

Ranking: 8/10

It is funny!

Reviewed about 2 years ago and experienced in February 2016

Jan Penicka's avatar

Jan Penicka

Czech Republic

Ranking: 10/10

We wish we knew earlier about the Caves because we missed on near Invercargill. But it is perfect that they are open for the public - especially this one!

Reviewed about 2 years ago and experienced in February 2016