Monday, April 1, 2024

Tamborine Mountain Glow Worm Caves

The world's only man-made cave with glow worms. Nice. Wish we had this in somewhere in Vantaa, maybe in one of the big garden complexes. Anyway, it really is nice that they try to maintain a population and show it to tourists. The glow worms are real, of course, though they live in an artificial cave where the caretakers release some insects every day.

The important philosophy lesson from the visit was:

On the site there are also frogs and Australian water dragons, though I did not see any.

The site is also home a winery and has a nice restaurant.

The entrance and setup for the artificial cave is very well done, fits the environment exactly. Inside there are some handrails and cabling etc. which is understandable, though you would normally not see most of it.

There's a good introduction to glow worms in a short movie before entering the cave proper, and a guide that shows us around in the glow worm cave afterwards. And there were plenty of glow worms. Exactly how many are visible depends on a lot of factors, they have to be hungry to want to shine a light to attract food. I think in general people may be disappointed that their experience in real or artificial showing of glow worms doesn't live up to photographs they've seen, but ... I think the trick is to get your eyes used to the darkness. 

Our guide used a dim a red light to show some details of the glow worms. And all of us had a glow-in-the-dark patch in our backs to avoid us bumping into each other. But these things, at least for me, shone too bright. I protected myself from the light of the patches by shielding them with my hat, and then I saw a lot of the worms. I was really happy about the experience! 

My only complaint is that it wasn't possible to photograph the glow worms, though I fully understand why. Large groups of tourists would disturb the glow worms and other tourists' experience even with just their phone screen lights. Let alone accidentally using the flash.

Tamborine Mountain is maybe an hour south of Brisbane. Our visit there a nice companion visit to our other destination, the Natural Bridge in Springbrook, one hour further south of Tamborine Mountain. There you can see glow worms in their natural habitat, and even take photos. Both are also easily reached from Gold Coast.

The official site of the place is here. Their coordinates are S 27.936365 E 153.189937. There's also a Wikipedia link. And you can read more about glow worms here. I had previously heard that the glow worms use light to attract mating partners, but I learned on this visit that this is not the case, they use the light to attract insects that get stuck in a hanging stick snare that they have.

I can also recommend stopping at the high ridge near Tamborine Mountain for some views. Here's the location: maps link.

Read more urban exploration stories from, and other underground stories from Read the full Planetskier series at, or all blog articles from Blogspot or TGR. Photos and text (c) 2024 by Jari Arkko, map picture is a snapshot from Google Maps. All rights reserved. 

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