14 Jan 2022

The Ultimate Movie Magic Guide To The Hobbiton Movie Set

In the words of Bilbo Baggins, “I’m off on an adventure”. An adventure you’ll certainly have on the Hobbiton movie set tour. This one’s for all the Lord of the Rings fans!

The set was originally scouted out by Sir Peter Jackson’s location team. They hunted for the perfect iconic rolling hills and the green pastures of the shire that is depicted in JRR Tolkien’s books. The 1,250-acre sheep farm in Waikato quickly became the newfound home of what we now know as The Shire. Above all, it was an idyllic place for Peter Jackson to create his set as the surrounding areas of the farm were untouched and extremely remote. The lack of human disturbance via industrialisation created the perfect setting, as there was no electricity nor buildings and no power lines or roads in sight. Thus, Jackson was able to fully commit to leaving the 20th century behind him and allowing the fantasy world of middle- earth to take over.

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A sign that reads Hobbiton

You can get your tickets for the Hobbiton movie set tour at the best price with easyGuide! Listed below are the tickets that we provide:

  1. Standard Hobbiton Movie Set Small Group Tour from £133.58.
  2. Transport only Hobbiton Movie Set Tour from Auckland from £82.09.
  3. Small group tour of Hobbiton Movie Set & Waitomo Caves from £154.37.
  4. Hobbiton, Rotorua & Te Puia: Small Group Tour from £169.86.
  5. Hobbiton, Rotorua & Wai-O-Tapu: Small Group Tour from £169.86

Location: 501 Buckland Road, Matamata 3472, New Zealand

Opening Times: Open daily 9am- 5pm

Construction of The Shire

Picture of the Hobbiton, including hobbit holes

In March 1999 work began on the farm to create the fictional agriculture of The Shire and bring to life Tolkien’s true vision of what the setting would look like from his books. It was a nine month quest to bring to life the ideas for Hobbiton, along with help from the New Zealand army. 39 temporary holes were soon dispersed across the 12 acre plot specifically used for the set. Once the filming for the movie started in late 1999, they employed high security measures and secrecy was key. After around three months of filming, it was a wrap at the set and the Hobbiton was abandoned.

However, fast forward to 2009, Peter Jackson returned to the set to film the prequal to Lord of The Rings, The Hobbit Trilogy. After filming ended, Jackson left behind the stunning movie set that you’ll see today, therefore including the 44 permanently reconstructed Hobbit Holes.

Hobbiton movie set tour

Hobbit hole, with sign that reads " no admittance, except on party buisiness".

Experience the enchanting middle-earth life at the Hobbiton movie set. Upon entry you’ll be greeted by your Hobbiton tour guide, who will walk you through the location and gladly answer all of your questions. Moreover, as you walk around you’ll have plenty of time to stop and take lots of pictures, so remember to bring a camera!

The beautiful green pastures of The Shire lie in the heart of the Waitomo region in Auckland. So take a look in the dwellings of some of the most famous faces from the movies. Not to mention, one of the most popular hobbit holes is the Bag End home, commonly known as Bilbo and Frodo Baggins’s home. It is situated under a large oak tree, overlooking the shire and is also the largest hole there.

Hobbit hole with yellow door, flowers and a rocking chair.

Samwise Gamgee’s Hobbit hole

Last but not least is Frodo’s devoted sidekick Samwise Gamgee’s hobbit hole. The charming hobbit hole is notable for it’s bright yellow door and colourful flowers. You’ll mainly see it featured at the end of The Return of the King film, as Sam returns home.

Green Dragon Inn

A wooden barrel that reads Delving & Oatlock Fine Ale South Farthing

If you’re a fan of Lord of the Rings, you’ll certainly know the significance of the Green Dragon Inn. The Green Dragon Inn was the meeting place for Hobbits, where they would talk about their day. Not to mention it was where Frodo, Sam, Merry and Pippin had numerous parties!

Since 2012 the Green Dragon Inn has been a fully functional pub and is part of the Hobbiton experience. The interior has been completely reconstructed to match how it was in the films. Finally, at the end of your tour, you can relax in an armchair by a roaring fire . You can also grab a complimentary Southfarthing ale, either an apple cider or a non alcoholic ginger beer.

Private Functions

The Mill house

Moreover, why not make lasting memories with a Lord of the Rings party? Hobbiton can also be used as a venue to host weddings and intimated birthday banquets!

The Millhouse is a new venue which follows the theme of the Hobbiton and is perfect for private functions. Moreover, the décor consists of exposed wooden beams, roaring fire and tailored decoration to create that middle-earth atmosphere. The Millhouse is fully equipped with a commercial kitchen, bathroom facilities and AV technology. Whether you’re looking for a small gathering of four or a full hearty banquet feast of 32 guests, they will cater for all your needs.

Waitomo Caves

Inside Waitomo cave.

Visit New Zealand’s best natural attraction! The Waitomo caves means “Water entrance” or, as the Tolkien fandom would know it, “Gollum’s cave”. Located in the depths of West Rotorua in Waitomo farmland, these ancient caves were originally discovered by the Maori people in the 1700s. Most of the guides here are direct descendants of the Maori chief, who first discovered the caves.

There are two levels to the caves, upper and lower. The upper level is the drier part of the caves. Here you’ll find the amazing rock formations, including: Banquet Chamber, the Pipe Organ and the Catacombs. However, the lower level, which can be accessed via boat, is where you’ll be able to visit the Cathedral. The Cathedral is renowned for its excellent acoustics!


Glowworms inside Waitomo cave

Arachnocampa luminosa are a specific species of glow-worms that are found in the caves and are native to New Zealand. They are an impressive species as they’re carnivores but can survive without food for weeks. They also trap their prey with a sticky mucus trap and their preferred foods are flies, mosquitos and midgets.

As you glide down the Glow-worm Grotto river, you’ll be accompanied by thousands of tiny creatures illuminating the caves. The darkness of the caves with the subtle glow from the glow-worms certainly created the perfect environment for the famous Gollum scene.

Thank you from easyGuide!

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