This is one of those places that unless you have a real interest in the movies/Tolkien/LordoftheRings, you could be unimpressed with the tour. You do get onto a real working New Zealand farm, as a bonus.
Tolkien wrote about a special place and it was found at Hinuera, just south of Matamata.
From $NZD66 per head. You can join the tour either in Matamata or at the Shire’s Rest Cafe on Buckland road, near the movie set farm.
This is no glitzy movie set, but rather an outdoor farm location. Extensively rebuilt in 2011 for The Hobbit movie, it is more impressive now than previous years as the set has remained complete as in the movies.
There are restrictions however, on how you share your photos, but the good thing is you are allowed to take photos but not post them on the net nor share with friends/family.
Experience the real Middle-earth with a visit to the Hobbiton Movie Set, the bucolic setting for The Shire that featured in the Peter Jackson directed films, The Lord of the Rings.
Your tour starts with a drive through the picturesque 1,250 acre sheep farm with spectacular views across to the Kaimai Ranges. Your guide will escort you through the ten acre site recounting fascinating details of how the Hobbiton set was created.
The Hobbit holes, Green Dragon Inn, Mill and other structures created for The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit films can be viewed and you will see how this beautiful piece of Waikato farmland was transformed into The Shire from Middle-earth.
Upon completion of your tour of the set you will return to The Shires Rest and then transferred back to the Matamata i-SITE.
Total tour duration from the Matamata Information Centre is 2 hours 30 minutes.
Note if you wish to take the tour from The Shires Rest Cafe please select Tour from The Shires Rest Cafe from the tour menu.
When director Peter Jackson spotted the Alexander Farm during an aerial search of the North Island for the best possible locations to film The Lord of The Rings filmtrilogy, he immediately thought it was perfect for Hobbiton, the central village of the movies’ Hobbit civilization. Nevertheless, a lot of work was still needed to be completed before it was up to the director’s high standards.
Site construction started in March 1999, and filming commenced in December of that year, continuing for three months. Below is a summary of the major components that were needed to create the Hobbiton Movie Set:
- The New Zealand Army was contracted to build 1.5 km of road into the site and the initial set development. They brought diggers, bulldozers, loaders, trucks, rollers, graders and other heavy machinery to the site.
- Barberry hedges and trees were brought in and gardens were nurtured throughout winter.
- Thirty-seven hobbit holes were created with untreated timber, ply and polystyrene.
- The Mill and double arch bridge were built out of scaffolding, ply and polystyrene, then glued and painted.
- Thatch on the pub and mill roofs was cut from rushes around the Alexander farm.
- The oak tree overlooking Bag End was cut down and brought in from near Matamata. Each branch was numbered and chopped, then transported and bolted together on top of Bag End (weighing 26 tonne).
- Artificial leaves were imported from Taiwan and individually wired onto the dead tree.
- Generators were brought in to run the base camp and filming equipment. Logisticsof power, water and sewerage all had to be considered.
- Catering was organised for up to 400 people a day, with three 2-course mealsrequired for all of the cast and crew.
The fictional Hobbit village is situated on a working sheep and beef farm, where it is advertised that guests can learn to shear sheep, and perform other agricultural duties before satisfying a well earned appetite at the on site Shires Rest cafe, which features fresh regional cuisine and provides unparalleled views of the Kaimai mountain ranges.
And at reasonable rates starting at two hundred New Zealand dollars a day for a tour and an overnight stay, this place is a deal, especially if you’re into the movie series. You can even buy a miniature version of the Bag End tree from the films, made especially for visitors to the site. Of course, even if you haven’t seen the films, like me, you can just take a deep breath and appreciate the surrounding landscape that is considered to be among the most lush and beautiful in the world.
Leave a comment
- The Black Arch Installation in Saudi Arabia by Shadia and Raja Alem
- Surrealism Manipulated Photography by Jerry Uelsmann
- Illusory Laser Light Sculptures Installation by Jayson Haebich
- Blue parrotfish named Gavin photobombing with tourists
- Heart Beaconby Interactive Installation by Joe O’Connell and Blessing Hancock
- Patricia Piccinini Skywhale hot-air balloon -commission for The Centenary of Canberra « Amazing World Pictures on Hyperrealist Unbelievable Sculptor by Patricia Piccinini wow
- Mysterious Photo of High school Girls-Japanese Schoolgirl « Amazing World Pictures on Hundreds of Japanese schoolboys Harry Potter fans jumping at the chance to show off their Quidditch skills
- Japanese Youth Eating-Giants Meme-another clever viral photo trend in Japan « Amazing World Pictures on Japanese Schoolgirls New Trend Perform Superhuman Energy Attacks
- Amelia’s World and Animal Affinity -Tiny Girl Who Loves Animals,Photos Captured by Her father Robin Schwartz « Amazing World Pictures on A Tiny Girl Tippi Degre, the real life Mowgli
- Walk Between The Raindrops At MoMA Indoor Rain Room Installation in New York « Amazing World Pictures on ‘Rain Room’ Installation to let visitors experience realistic wet weather… in LONDON
- Current News
- Food Art
- Photoshop,Graphic Design
- Street Art