Cathedral Caves

Cathedral Caves are a highlight for visitors to The Catlins. Located in cliffs at the northern end of pristine Waipati Beach, they have attracted international interest for their length - the two sea-formed passages together measure just on 200 metres - and their impressive height, up to 30 metres.

Popular for decades, this outstanding natural feature is 15km south of the village of Papatowai and 2km off the highway. From the car park, a one-kilometre walking track descends through lush coastal forest to the beach. Visitors cross Maori freehold land, which is managed by a trust.


There is a small charge for the use of the car park and access to the bush track, beach and caves.

Children under 5 - Free

Children 5 - 14 yrs - $2

Adults 15 and over - $10








NB: Tide predictions are compiled for standard barometric pressure and are specific to this area.

Access to the Cathedral Caves is possible only at low tide. Here you will find a list of the low tide times that occur during daylight hours suitable for viewing the caves.


  • dogfree
    Dog free enviroment to look after the wildlife
  • carpark
    Secure carpark
  • currency
    $10 per adult, $2 per child, EFTPOS available
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