If you’re searching for something unusual to do on your next trip to the Outback, look no further than the Glowworm Tunnel in Helensburgh. While you probably won’t find this obscure attraction in your Australia travel guide, it just might make you forget the Australian countryside and feel as though you’re in another world.
History of the Glowworm Tunnel
Until 1995, the Metropolitan Tunnel, also known as the Glowworm Tunnel, was just like any other abandoned railroad tunnel. It was closed in 1915, filled with water, and was largely ignored for eighty years. During the decades of being untouched by humans, a large number of luminescent glowworms began to call the tunnel home. The glowworms lingered after the tunnel was drained in 1995, and the now brightly-lit tunnel has become a popular tourist attraction for visitors to Australia that enjoy finding things to do that their friends have never heard of.
Visiting the Glowworm Tunnel
Although the Glowworm Tunnel can be visited year round, it is a good idea to check the weather before trekking out of town to check out this unique sight. Light rain can make the rocks inside the tunnel slippery and difficult to walk on, and strong rain can flood the tunnel. However, if you enjoy canoeing or kayaking, floating through the flooded tunnel can create the most unforgettable ride you’ve ever been on.
Be sure to pack comfortable shoes with good grips to minimize slipping, and dress in layers, as the interior of the tunnel may be cooler or more humid than the outdoor temperature. Bring plenty of water and snacks if you’re planning to stay for a while. While the tunnel can be a magical sight for children, be sure to instruct them before you arrive to walk carefully, not run, and not touch the glowworms unless instructed to do so.
While the Metropolitan Tunnel is one of the brightest and best-known places to find glowworms, there are others throughout Australia and New Zealand. If there’s an Australian vacation in your future, be sure to add the Glowworm Tunnel to your list of must-see sights!