Upper South Island and the West Coast Sights



Oparara cave system

Oparara cave system Review

Magical rainforests and sculpted landforms here are encompassed in the Honeycomb Hill Caves Specially Protected Area, within Kahurangi National Park. Spectacular features at Oparara include a series of huge limestone arches (including the largest in the Southern Hemisphere at 143 meters [470 feet]), passages, and caverns. Several short walks explore the caves, which are located about 45 minutes' drive north-east of Karamea. The Oparara Valley Project Trust, a community project, has enhanced visitor facilities, and offer guided tours that can included both walks and kayaking explorations. Also in this cave sytem is Honeycomb Hill, featuring underground passages of more than 13 km (8 mi) that contain the largest collection of subfossil bird bones found in New Zealand, many of them extinct including nine moa species and the giant NZ eagle. These caves are protected, and access is by guided tour only. Check with the Karamea Information Centre for details.

Updated: 02-18-2014

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