Access to the caves is now closed for the season. Conditions permitting, access to the caves will reopen late October - updated 16 May 2023.
Cathedral Caves is considered one of the Clutha Top 10 Must-do’s and is definitely a highlight of The Catlins. Towering an impressive 30-metres high and featuring two sea-formed passages 200-metres in length, Cathedral Caves is one of the world’s largest sea cave complexes.
Renowned for its amazing acoustics, this natural wonder is located in cliffs along the northern end of Waipati Beach, south of Papatowai - a small township where the rainforest meets the sea.
The caves are only accessible at low tide so please check the Cathedral Caves website for the latest conditions and tide times. The Caves are closed over winter from May, and open again late October/November depending on spring tides and cave conditions.
There is a small fee for using the car park and access to the bush track, beach, and caves across Māori freehold land ($10 per adult and $2 per child over five).
If you’re in the area, and want to adventure inland, try the 40-minute return track to the impressive McLean Falls.