Visit the Home of Hobbits in New Zealand
With spectacular views of the majestic Kaimai mountain range on the North Island of New Zealand, the Hobbiton movie set offers visitors the opportunity to step into the fantasy Middle-earth featured in The Lord of The Rings trilogy, and more recently, in The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey. Created by South African-born J.R.R. Tolkien, Hobbits are little people known for their hospitality and enjoyment of a good party. Set in rolling green valleys, their interesting little homes are now part of a tour that offers insight into the lives of Hobbits, described by Tolkien as being uncomplicated, shy of 'Big Folk' and fond of food, eating up to six meals a day.
There are different options for touring Hobbiton, one of which starts at the Shires Rest Café and includes a drive through the scenic 1,250 acre working sheep farm. An experienced guide escorts visitors through The Shire of Middle-earth, of which Hobbiton is a part, providing interesting information on how the area was transformed into a movie set for the blockbuster productions. Among the special features that are viewed are the Green Dragon Inn, the Hobbit holes and the Mill.
For Hobbits, the Green Dragon Inn was the gathering place to enjoy a meal and ale, while catching up on local gossip. Today, the Green Dragon Inn is open for business and all Hobbiton Movie Set tours include one complimentary refreshment at this quaint establishment which has been carefully reconstructed as it appears in the films. The Green Dragon is also available for private functions after hours. Other tour options include the Tour from Matamata, Tour from Rotorua, private tours and farm stays.
When New Zealander Peter Jackson was searching for locations to film The Lord of The Rings, he came across the Alexander Farm and immediately saw its potential as the site for Hobbiton. Barberry hedges and trees were planted and nurtured through the cold New Zealand winter and thirty-seven Hobbit holes were built. The Mill and double-arched bridge were constructed and the inn and mill roofs were thatched from rushes cut locally. All these additions blended seamlessly with the natural lush hills of New Zealand to create a fantasy realm that continues to entertain people around the world.