(April 19, 2014)
For Easter I again spent the holidays in New Zealand.. this time I traveled with my parents for 10 days… Since I’m travelling with my parents, this trip is more relaxed and we just covered 2 places. First we spent 3 days in Auckland to visit some relatives, then after that flew to Queenstown for the remainder of the vacation.
Personally, I find the South Island of NZ far more interesting to travel and go sightseeing in than the North Island… But I had one must do that I requested we go to while in Auckland.. and that’s to Matamata, the filming location of Hobbiton from the Lord of the Rings movie.
Although I’m not a huge LOTR fan, I really wanted to go because of how beautiful this place looked in the movie… Plus I heard that the hobbit houses have been kept intact even after the movie.. so it is as close as you can get to seeing the real Shire!
The area where they built the Hobbiton is actually a farming area, so I was worried that a lot of what I saw from the movie was digitally enhanced and it won’t look as amazing in real life as it did on screen. But this picture I got (no edits done to this pic) just shows how naturally beautiful this place is.
Even my parents, who do not know or care about LOTR, kept taking pictures as we walked around with all the cute houses and small details from the set that were left here.
Here’s heaps more photos around Hobbiton!
Adding to the experience, we had lunch at the Green Dragon Inn
Where we had Ginger Butterbeer, made specially for this place 😀
After lunch, we were allotted some free time in the gift shop before heading back to Auckland. The tour I got was from Viator, but there are several tours that go here (so just check if you find one better). There are options available which combine Hobbiton with other tourist spots, so if you want to cover more in a day you might want to check those out.
Otherwise, the Hobbiton tour alone is 8 hrs, and you’ll be back in Auckland by 3 pm 🙂
Super recommend this for those who have watched the LOTR movies and just wanna see the beauty of the Shire in person 🙂