Well, I have been able to tick of Hobbiton on my bucket list! They reopened it the last weekend of May, and we took the opportunity to go and visit. We had planned to go earlier before the whole covid pandemic, but it was always fully booked. And now when I have seen it, I understand why!
It was a rainy day. It does not matter except for that it explains why my photos are a little dark. Hobbiton is built on a private farm near the city of Matamata on the north island of New Zealand. This is Hobbiton how they rebuilt it for the Hobbit movies based on J.R.R Tolkiens book of the same name. The first movie set of Hobbiton that they made for The Lord of the rings movies were not permanent and was removed after the filming ended. After that, they realized however that it would have been a great idea to have turned into a tourist attraction. So, when they rebuild the village for the Hobbit movies, they build it with the intention of saving the small hobbit village for fans to visit.
It was wonderful. It really was like stepping into the world of J.R.R.Tolkiens and how he describes the Shire and the small civilisation of hobbits. The attention to detail was amazing, and you expected to see a hobbit stepping out from one of the doors at any time. Or hoping, at least...
East or west, which way should we explore first?
Here I am standing with my back towards the small path where Bilbo Baggings leaves Hobbiton to go off on an adventure with the dwarves. And way up in the left corner you can see Bag End. The path through Hobbiton goes dwindling through the village past all the small hobbit holes. Some houses are built small so that they seem tiny to humans, and some are built human-sized so that humans can play small looking hobbits. Very clever.
The houses, or facades I should say as there were no actual houses behind the doors and windows, are beautifully made and maintained.
The attention to detail made it feel like you were walking around inside a fairy tale.
The photo is not really good enough, but there were sheep grazing in the fields behind the village, and they had chickens and other fowls grazing in front of some of the hobbit holes.
Wouldn't you just love to walk right in and be served a cup of tea?
The party tree that was the reason they wanted to built Hobbiton here on this farm. Also, almost no human buildings or other constructions insight. And if you look carefully at the other side of the water, you can see the Green Dragon Inn.
Walking up to Bag End.
Unfortunately Neither Bilbo nor Frodo was home.
This is the hobbit hole that was Samwise Gamgee's house in the movies The Lord of the rings.
The tour ended with a mug of ale or cider at the Green Dragon.
On our way back to the bus we got to see the village from the other side of the water. Bag End up to the left and the big party tree to the right.
I leave you with this, my friend Kim and me in a hobbit doorway. This was one of the few holes that you could step inside and get a photo standing in the doorway. There was nothing inside, just a space big enough that you could give the impression of stepping inside the hole, or out from it. (All the indoor scenes at Bag End where shot in the big studios down south in Wellington.)
I can highly recommend a visit to Hobbiton if you are a Tolkien fan and you get a chance to.