Mature man with backpack standing on mountain against sky during wonderful sunrise
The Complete Lord Of The Rings Fan Guide To
New Zealand
In "The Fellowship of the Ring," Frodo and his fellow Hobbits are brought to the remote watch tower of Amon Sûl (also known as Weathertop Hollow) by Aragorn. The watch tower was computer-created, but the bulky limestone that it tops is an actual place located on private land — but inquisitive fans can get a good look at it from the nearby Waikaretu Road in Port Waikato.
Port Waikato
"The Lord of the Rings" and "Hobbit" trilogies were filmed at Hobbiton, the set of the village in the heart of The Shire — and now a tourist attraction — built on part of a sheep farm in the rolling hills of North Island. Fans can visit the set on guided tours, snap photos by the doors of Hobbit holes, wander the village paths, and have a brew at the Green Dragon Inn.
Tongariro National Park is home to multiple filming locations, such as the battle scene early in "The Fellowship of the Ring," at the Whakapapa ski area, and just above Mangawhero Falls is where Sméagol crawls along the riverbed trying to catch a slippery fish. Tukino Skifield is the area that stands in for Mordor, and Mount Ngauruhoe is Mount Doom.
Tongariro National Park
In Wellington, fans can tour Weta, Peter Jackson’s film production facilities, to learn how the effects, costumes and props were done. Mount Victoria is where the Hobbits hid from the Ringwraiths in "The Fellowship of the Ring,” as noted on signposts as the Hobbit's Hideaway Track. A little north of the city, Kaitoke Regional Park was the Elvish homeland of Rivendell.
The Putangirua Pinnacles in Aorangi Forest Park are a series of jagged hoodoos created over millennia by erosion. For fans of the movies, these spectacular formations will strike a chord as the chilling locale where Aragorn, Gimli, and Legolas ride on horseback before encountering the Army of the Dead.
Aorangi Forest Park