This area reminds me of the foothills of the West side of the Sierra Nevada Mountains in California in the spring, except for the small volcanoes in the distance. These hills are a short distance west of the small town of Waipu, about a two hour drive north of Auckland. I didn't notice too much of the scenery on the drive up or back as this was my first time driving on the left side of the road. Our daughter and I wanted to see the glow worm cave, but first joined up with a local group for a hike to the top this hill where we had an almost 360° view of the area on a nice clear day.
The glow worm cave was an adventure. It was a self guided walk, wading in an ankle deep stream which started in a large room, and continued through the darkness as the roof of the cave got lower and the stream got deeper. Crouching to keep from banging our heads on the roof of the cave with water up to the top of our thighs, we reached the end of the cave. We did see the bioluminescence of the glow worms (which are really insects) once our eyes got adjusted to the dark.