Once upon a time J.R.R Tolkien wrote a thrilling tale about a young adventurer who set off on a perilous journey to destroy a powerful artefact. Sound slightly familiar? The young adventurer in question is none other than Frodo Baggins, a Hobbit, and the object he was supposed to destroy? The One Ring.
Going on to sell over 150 million copies worldwide since its initial publication in 1954, ‘The Lord of the Rings’ trilogy is not only one of the highest selling book series of all time, but also one of the most beloved.
In 1999, production on the film adaptation began, and the iconic Peter Jackson scoured the world to find the ideal location to bring the books to life. As they set their eyes upon the Alexander Farm, a 1,250-acre sheep farm deep in the heart of Waikato, they knew that this would be the perfect place to shoot. Fans are lucky enough to be able to visit Hobbiton, where the movie sets have been kept in pristine condition after the filming of both ‘The Lord of the Rings’ and ‘The Hobbit’ trilogies wrapped.
Your tour starts at Bag End, where our heroes Frodo and Bilbo Baggins both began their adventures. 44 Hobbit Holes are open for you to explore, allowing you to see how a real Hobbit lives! Make sure you watch out for the chandeliers though, or you might hit your head on them like Gandalf.
Led by an experienced tour guide, you will feel right at home in The Shire as they take you across the hills and through the village. The set designers were very detailed in their craft, and everywhere you look you’ll be able to see the love and attention they put into the smallest things. Minor details such as smoke billowing from the Hobbit Holes brings the village to life, making it seem like Hobbits actually live there. Taking photos is encouraged on the tour, and the tour guides will constantly point out the best locations for you to get that perfect Instagram shot.
The Green Dragon Inn
After a two-hour tour, you’ll be escorted to The Green Dragon Inn, where you can experience pub life like Frodo and his friends did. For dinner, the in-house chef will prepare a mouth-watering feast fit for a king –tables of traditional Hobbit inspired dishes like roasts and stews will be available on the menu, and of course, second helpings are always encouraged!
As you take your after dinner stroll around The Shire, you will notice that lanterns and fairy lights are now scattered throughout the village, creating an atmosphere filled with magic and mystery. The Hobbiton Tour is truly something newcomers to the series and veteran fans alike can both enjoy immensely.