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LOTR Film locations by city

Tourism ideas near Hobbiton


 

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Matamata is part of the Waikato region, famous for its farmers and farmland. The area is littered with lush green rolling hills, dairy farms and of course, lots of sheep! The local rugby team is even affectionately known as the ‘Moo-loos’, in honor of the region's dairy farming industry.

 

 

 

Lord of the Rings in New Zealand


We plan wheelchair accessible vacations to many of the scenic film locations used in Lord of the Rings.

Like a visit to a small area of farmland outside the small town of Matamata, near Hamilton (a couple of hours drive south of Auckland) that was transformed by The Lord of the Rings crew into the peaceful hobbit village of Hobbiton, (image on right)

When The Lord of the Rings producers and artists walked around the farmland of the region, they instantly knew they had found a place perfectly fitting Tolkien's description of The Shire, the homeland of the hobbits.

wheelchair accessible cinema landscapes
Small rolling hills gently undulated over the landscape, there were trees in all the right places – even a lake to place the mill on.
handicapped access to film locations in New Zealand
The Southern Alps (above) stretch 550 km's from Blenheim to Fiordland were the obvious choice to portray the Misty Mountains in Lord of the Rings. image credit Peter Morath
The Lord of the Rings was filmed over 274 days, using 350 purpose-built sets in more than 150 locations all over New Zealand (including 30 Department of Conservation sites). Filming in National Parks meant plants were uprooted to make room for the set, temporarily housed in big custom-made nurseries, then replanted at the end of the shoot. In Queenstown, the site of heavy battle scenes in The Lord of the Rings, up to 1100 people were on set each day. To protect plants from foot traffic, a massive amount of red carpet was laid.

Location people also had to make sure they didn't destroy cultural symbols. Mount Ruapehu is sacred to local Maori and traditionally Maori don't look at the peaks of the mountains. It’s also considered offensive to draw or photograph them. So Jackson and the tribal elders agreed The Lord of the Rings could film the mountain but use digital effects (such as adding lava) to make it unrecognisable.


   

Lord of the Rings Film Locations by City

Matamata
The Farmland outside the small town of Matamata, near Hamilton, was transformed by The Lord of the Rings crews into the peaceful village of Hobbiton. Nelson Nelson's wild and beautiful mountains provided memorable locations for The Lord of the Rings while local artisans supplied all manner of props.

Volcanic Plateau
The legendary Volcanic Plateau in New Zealand's central North Island was home to the most sinister of The Lord of the Rings locales; Mordor, the stronghold of the dark lord Sauron.

New Zealand Home of Middle-earth
Why New Zealand truly is the Home of Middle-earth. Details and maps about the stunning and diverse locations used for The Lord of the Rings trilogy in New Zealand are here

Queenstown
The spectacular adventure resort town of Queenstown in New Zealand's lower South Island was the base for several Lord of the Rings filming locations.

Wellington
New Zealand's capital city Wellington was the production base for The Lord of the Rings. Many local sites were used for the large outdoor sets of Rivendell and Minas Tirith.

Canterbury
Mount Potts, situated on a high country station in Canterbury New Zealand, became Edoras, the fortress city of the Rohan people (The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers).

 


Tourist Ideas near Hobbiton

Just south of Waikato’s main center, Hamilton, are the famous Waitomo Caves – massive subterranean caverns adorned with stalactites and stalagmites. Visitors can take in the eerie beauty of the glow-worms overhead, gliding through the silent darkness on a barge. The more adventurous can explore the caves with a black water rafting trip, or even abseil (rappel) 100m into the Lost World cave before taking 'the wet way out' – walking, swimming and climbing.

 

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