Peak behind the scenes of 'The Hobbit' with these iconic film tours.

J. R. R. Tolkien fans are often so devoted they look for traces of Middle‑earth™ in real life. If you fall into this camp, here’s some ‘The Hobbit’ film tours that will help bring Middle‑earth™ to life. 

Hobbiton™ Movie Set, New Zealand

Visit Hobbiton™ Movie Set(opens in new window) for a guided tour of The Shire. The former film set comprises a millhouse, a Green Dragon Inn, and 44 hobbit holes. At the time of filming, those little round doors, so quaint and inviting, opened to nothing but empty space and film-set detritus. Since filming wrapped, the owners of Hobbiton™ Movie Set have renovated the interiors of the Green Dragon Inn and two hobbit holes on Bagshot Row, with the help of designers and illustrators who worked on the films. You can now stop in at the Green Dragon Inn for a Hobbit™ Southfarthing™ beverage and explore inside a hobbit hole to find hidden Easter eggs. Note, if you see people dressed as hobbits, waving and smiling Disney-style, it’s not the staff.

Bagshot Row, Hobbiton™ Movie Set Tours, Waikato

The opportunity to venture inside the hobbit holes is the latest addition to the movie set, where previously you could only have photos taken outside the iconic round front door. Now you can put yourself right in the movie set with the copper bath, dining room and fireside settings straight out of The Shire. 

Bagshot Row, Hobbiton™ Movie Set Tours, Waikato

Head to the Wētā Workshop(opens in new window) (Wellington) or Wētā Unleashed(opens in new window) (Auckland) for a look at how the films were made. For attractions that began not for the purposes of making money but simply to have somewhere to send fans who turned up to Wētā Workshop's studio, these tours have grown quickly to become a global phenomenon, ranked alongside Warner Bros tours. On a Wētā Workshop tour, you'll catch a glimpse inside the studio to see props being made for upcoming films. On a Wētā Unleashed tour, expect some light humour – mostly from ‘Jeff’, an orc-like animatronic that took 60 people almost a year to build but, going by appearances, a lot less time to script for jokes.

Wētā Workshop Experience Tours, Wellington

See the filming location for Trollshaws Forest with a Hairy Feet Waitomo(opens in new window) tour. Here, you’ll see a part of Aotearoa New Zealand that isn’t normally open to the public.

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