Travelling period: June 2015, I was 10 years old
As I told you, Matamata is famous for the filming of the Hobbiton. So we bought our tickets at the Info Center to visit the Hobbiton set location. The tour guides showed us the directions from the town to the Hobbiton carpark.
Before I continue, let me tell you a little history. The director of the movie, Sir Peter Jackson, took more than a year to find a good place to film The Lord of the Rings (LOTR). When he and his team visited this location, however, they realized it was an excellent spot because it has a lot of nature and rolling hills.
When we arrived at the carpark after eating lunch, we went to the toilet and got ready to be toured around Hobbiton. After a short wait, we boarded the bus that would take us to the set.
While in the bus, we saw rolling hills and lots of sheep scattered around. The journey was less then five minutes. After arriving at the set, I was surprised that it was enormous and well maintained.
The two tour guides told us that they used sheep from England instead of here to make it more English-like. New Zealand sheeps are all white and a bit modern so they imported Suffolk Sheep from England. The whole set area also has underground irrigation to maintain the grass to be green. So according to the guides, during summer, even when the grass around Matamata is turning brown, the grass in Hobbiton will remain lush green. As we passed by Frodo’s house, the guides told us the tree above it is the only man-made tree around the set. I also learnt that there were 44 hobbit houses. Oh I almost forgot, while listening to the tour guide, I almost fell at a steep cliff when I missed a step.
After all of this touring and taking pictures, we each drank a glass of ginger beer at The Green Dragon bar. We ended our tour around Hobbiton and headed back to the carpark. There, we took some pictures with the nearby sheep and the beautiful sunset.