The explosive origins of New Zealand are on full display on this exploration of the unique geothermal pools in Rotorua, just over an hour’s drive from Tauranga.
- Adult Ages 16+
- Child Ages 4-15, must be accompanied by an adult
Live the Hobbiton Experience in New Zealand
Made famous by the Lord of the Rings movies, this area of New Zealand outside the port of Tauranga holds beauty and serenity amongst the rolling green hills. Viewing the distinct mountain range and volcanic domes, you also get to see why Peter Jackson, the creator of the Lord of the Rings movies, chose this area as the perfect setting to portray Middle Earth. Experience Hobbiton as a local!
Harbour of Tauranga and Kaimai Ranges
Your tour begins from the Port of Tauranga, where you’re met by your guide at the main pedestrian gates. Crossing the harbour bridge, enjoy great views of The Mount, a 232-metre high volcanic dome, which marks the entrance to the harbour of Tauranga.
Traveling towards Hobbiton, we climb over the Kaimai mountain range, which divides the Bay of Plenty coastal region of the Waikato district. From this vantage point, you get a great opportunity for photos. The view from the top of this range is outstanding, with extinct volcanoes seen in the distance.
Explore Hobbiton and Waikato Farmland
Before you know it, we arrive at Hobbiton, the movie set location for the village in the Lord of the Rings films and The Hobbit movie trilogy. Here, we meet a guide who knows the movies inside out and reveals inside stories about these famous films, and even more famous location.
Your two-hour tour takes you deep into the rolling hills of a dairy farm where the original Lord of the Rings set was completely rebuilt for The Hobbit. Peter Jackson looked all over New Zealand to find a place that had a lake, rolling hills, and of course, a ‘party tree’.
During the tour, expect to get up close and check out the Hobbit Holes, The Mill, the double arched bridge and many other interesting structures and gardens from the movie. Image boards are strategically placed at key locations, allowing you to see how this beautiful piece of Waikato farmland was transformed into The Shire from Middle Earth.
Green Dragon Inn and Return
Live like a local at the Hobbiton haunt: the Green Dragon Inn. Their specialty is the local shire ale, cider and ginger beer — so belly up to the bar and enjoy this special treat.
On the return journey, time permitting, we make a stop at the magnificent McLaren Falls, a popular area for outdoor activities and home to one of the best botanical collections of trees in the North Island.