Lord of the Rings: follow the footsteps of Bilbo and Frodo in New Zealand
The Lord of the Rings is a world famous fantasy trilogy and one of the biggest and most ambitious projects in film history. All three films were shot in New Zealand, the birthplace of director Peter Jackson. Many of the beautiful landscapes featured in the films can be visited during a trip to New Zealand.
Hobbiton and Mordor
New Zealand consists of two main islands, the North Island and the South Island, and several smaller islands. Both islands are blessed with breathtakingly beautiful natural landscapes. The North Island is where the famous, enchanting and beloved residence of the hobbits, the Shire, is located. The background of the Shire in the Lord of the Rings films is Matamata, located in the northern part of the North Island.
Obviously, not all locations that have served as a backdrop in films are immediately recognisable, as special effects have been used in the films. This is not the case, however, with Hobbiton. Those who find themselves on the North Island during a trip to New Zealand can visit the setting of Hobbiton, where 44 Hobbit houses, as seen in the films, can still be found. You can even have a drink at the Green Dragon Inn. If you want to visit Hobbiton, you can book various tours. It is advisable to book in advance, as the tours are very popular and sell out quickly.
Not only the scenes of the serene and fabulous Shire were filmed on the North Island. Another location on the North Island served as the set for the magical Rivendell, the hidden refuge of the elves: Kaitoke Regional Park. Kaitoke is located about 45 kilometres northeast of New Zealand’s capital, Wellington. It is therefore easy to combine a visit to the country’s capital with a visit to this regional park.
The North Island is not only home to locations that have served as film sets for the serene and magical locations of the films. In the central part of the North Island is Tongariro National Park, New Zealand’s oldest national park, whose eerie arid landscapes were chosen for the filming of the dark and gloomy Mordor. Also within this park is Mount Doom, in real life known as Mount Ngauruhoe.
If you want to visit the mentioned film sets, you need a visa for your trip to New Zealand. Fortunately, the New Zealand visa can easily be applied for online.
Other highlights of New Zealand
Since the New Zealand visa is valid for a total of two years and allows an unlimited number of trips during this period (each stay can last up to three months), you can also visit other highlights of New Zealand in addition to the film locations. The country is famous for the beautiful natural landscapes and has a lot to offer. For example: in addition to the Tongariro National Park mentioned above, the country has thirteen other national parks.
The film locations mentioned above are all located on the North Island, but the South Island is also definitely worth a visit. Here you will find, among other things, New Zealand’s largest national park: Fiordland National Park. In addition to the beautiful natural landscapes, New Zealand has a number of interesting cities. Visit for example Auckland, Wellington (on the North Island) or Christchurch on the South Island.
To travel to New Zealand you need a visa (NZeTA)
New Zealand is not only the ideal destination for lovers of the Lord of the Rings films. The country has something for everyone: breathtaking natural landscapes, many interesting sites and an intriguing history. Anyone who wants to travel to New Zealand, whether to visit the famous film sets or for another reason, needs a visa. A visa for New Zealand, i.e. the NZeTA (“New Zealand Travel Authority”) can easily be applied for online. Before submitting your New-Zealand visa application, it is important to check whether you meet all the requirements.