Matamata is the most famous middle-earth film location in New Zealand. Also known as ‘Hobbiton’, this location is quite impressive. Originally built as a set for both the Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit film trilogies, it is now a permanent attraction in New Zealand. Hobbiton comes complete with Hobbit holes, gardens and even the Mill and The Green Dragon Inn. The set is located close to Auckland, so you can enjoy a few days in the city of sails before you head on down to Matamata.
Lake Pukaki, Mt Cook
Mt Cook, otherwise known as Aoraki, is New Zealand’s tallest mountain. It is part of the Southern Alps, the main divide in New Zealand’s South Island. This part of New Zealand is known for it’s distinctive light, turquoise blue water and alpine backdrop. Lake Pukaki is one of New Zealand’s most popular tourist destinations and here you can do plenty of outdoor activities – from trekking and mountaineering to ice climbing. Grab a flight to Christchurch and then rent a car and head down to Mt Cook, it’s definitely a sight you must see.
Pelorus River, Marlborough
Famous for its crystal clear waters that cuts through a rocky gorge, Pelorous river was used as a set location in the Hobbit film series. Encapsulating Pelorus river, is Marlborough sounds, which is famous for its food and wine. Vineyards cover much of the Marlborough sounds, which produces most of New Zealand’s wine exports. Marlborough is also known for its fresh produce, especially seafood, so grab a flight from Wellington and visit this iconic New Zealand gem.
Mount Sunday was the location for Edoras in the Lord of the Rings film series. Inaccessible by the general public, you can still view this mountain from a nearby high country station called Mount Potts. There you can get accommodation and see Mount Sunday near the entrance. The Canterbury Plains is the largest plain in New Zealand and it is a truly breathtaking location. After visiting the plains you can head to Christchurch or Ashburton to visit two of New Zealand’s most charming urban dwellings. It’s best to hire a car for this trip because the drive around this part of NZ is truly magnificent.