INSIDE: Roam the Gnome’s Ultimate Guide to Hobbiton Movie Set.
30% of visitors to Hobbiton Movie Set have NEVER seen the films!
Want some more facts about the 12 acre set of Hobbiton?
Hobbiton Movie Set Fact #1:
95% of what you see is real.
5% is fake, mostly the stuff on tables and in wagons.
(Your challenge when visiting Hobbiton is to see if YOU can spot the fakes!)
Hobbiton Movie Set Fact #2:
30 – that’s THIRTY – cameramen (and camerawomen) and their equipment can fit inside Bilbo Baggins Hobbit Hole.
It’s the largest on the farm.
Hobbiton Movie Set Fact #3:
When Gandalf looks out the window to see the sunset, the hobbit hole was facing the wrong way.
So Sir Peter Jackson filmed sunrise, and played it backwards!
Now that’s movie magic.
There’s plenty more facts and intrigue to be found on a Hobbiton Tour of Middle Earth.
Planning a visit to Hobbiton? Read on!
Disclosure: This article contains affiliate links. If you make a purchase after clicking on one of these links, we may receive a small commission at NO extra cost to you.
- 1 Hobbiton New Zealand Tour – Self Drive to The Shire
- 2 Book your Hobbiton Tour Tickets EARLY!
- 3 Book a Hobbiton Movie Set Tour And Festive Buffet Lunch Combo
- 4 Hobbiton Buses from Matamata and Rotorua
- 5 Hobbiton Tours from Auckland and Hamilton.
- 6 Hobbiton Movie Set Tours
- 7 Hobbiton The Shire New Zealand
- 8 Wander the Hobbiton Movie Set on a Hobbiton Tour
- 9 Visit the Green Dragon Inn at Hobbiton
- 10 Hobbiton Evening Banquet Tour
- 11 Hobbiton Souvenirs to buy
- 12 Hobbiton Accommodation
- 13 FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
- 14 Where is Hobbiton in New Zealand?
- 15 Where was the Hobbit filmed?
- 16 Can you go inside a Hobbit House?
- 17 What’s the best Hobbit Door?
- 18 How many Hobbit movies are there?
- 19 Are they still filming at Hobbiton?
- 20 Who owns Hobbiton Movie Set?
- 21 THE INSIDE SCOOP: Visit Hobbiton in Matamata
- 22 Hobbiton Movie Set prices
- 23 How long is the Hobbiton Tour?
- 24 Where to buy Hobbiton Tickets
- 25 Is there a Hobbiton discount code?
- 26 Hobbiton Promo Code?
- 27 Is the Hobbiton Movie Set Tour worth it?
- 28 How to get to Hobbiton
- 29 Hobbiton Map
- 30 Hobbiton weather
- 31 Facilities at Hobbiton
- 32 Toadstool Rating- Hobbiton The Shire
- 33 Looking for More Things to Do in New Zealand for Kids near Matamata?
Hobbiton New Zealand Tour – Self Drive to The Shire
The wander around Hobbiton and the Shire starts for self-drive tour participants at the Shire’s Rest Cafe, a 15 minute drive from Matamata i-SITE.
This super cute Tourist Information building in Matamata town is Hobbiton-themed too!
There’s plenty of free parking at Hobbiton for cars and RV vans where you can leave your vehicle for the duration of your tour.
The Shire’s Rest has a cafe where you can fuel up before your adventure, plus there’s a ticket office, and Hobbiton souvenir shop selling all kinds of Hobbiton souvenirs.
The cafe and ticketing centre is open 7 days a week, from 9am to 4.30pm with extended hours in summer.
Book your Hobbiton Tour Tickets EARLY!
HOT TIP: Book your Hobbiton tickets in advance BEFORE you drive all the way there.
This is a best selling tourist destination in New Zealand, and there’s NO guarantee of availability at the door, especially in the busy months of summer and spring.
DON’T RISK IT.
In fact, book as early as you can to secure the date you want.
Two friends have recently taken my advice, and could not believe how close they came to missing out when looking at the lack of tour availability on the day they wanted to visit.
This is not a drill. I repeat, this is not a drill.
(Thank me later!)
Book Hobbiton Tickets Now: Hobbiton Movie Set Guided Tour (self-drive) via Get Your Guide.
Book a Hobbiton Movie Set Tour And Festive Buffet Lunch Combo
Did you know you can also book a Hobbiton Movie Set Guided Tour that includes a FESTIVE BUFFET LUNCH?
First you’ll experience the magic of Hobbiton on a Hobbiton walking tour of the movie set grounds. Next, you’ll sample one of the special Hobbiton drinks when you head INSIDE the Green Dragon Inn.
Lastly, you’ll feast on a festive lunch of delicious Hobbit approved dishes, including Kiwi classics and Hobbit family favorites in the Party Marquee.
The Meeting point for this tour is at Shire’s Rest at 501 Buckland Road, Hinuera Matamata.
Hobbiton Buses from Matamata and Rotorua
If you are travelling New Zealand by public transport, catch the Hobbiton Tour bus from either the i-SITE at Matamata, or the Hobbiton Shop in Rotorua.
Hobbiton Tours from Auckland and Hamilton.
You can also visit the Hobbit village on a Hobbiton tour from Auckland.
Hobbiton day tours are run by a bunch of different tour companies, offering different itineraries including one that heads to Hot Water Beach on the Coromandel Peninsula and another that returns via Waitomo Caves.
Pick the one that suits you best.
How long is it from Auckland to Hobbiton? The drive is about 2 and a half hours.
BOOK NOW: Secure your place on a Hobbiton Tour from Auckland (via Get Your Guide)
Hobbiton Movie Set Tours
From Shires Rest, you travel by bus (either one of official green Hobbiton buses, or with your coach tour) through the gates and INTO the boundaries of the Hobbiton Shire.
There’s no other way in.
The drive takes you through the rolling hills and green pastures of the Alexander Farm.
Spotted by Sir Peter Jackson and his team during an aerial search for suitable film sites, the lush scenery proved irresistible.
It’s truly magical.
Hobbiton The Shire New Zealand
Soon enough, you reach your destination and head into the Shire on foot.
It’s not long till you spot your FIRST Hobbit hole.
There’s 39 of them.
The burning question on everyone’s lips: ‘Can we go inside’?
I’ll let you in on a little secret.
Most of the Hobbit holes are cute whimsical facades only, but there is one Hobbit hole photo opportunity where you can see inside for yourself!
Wander the Hobbiton Movie Set on a Hobbiton Tour
The Hobbiton tour is led by a guide, who orchestrates the group to meander through the Shire at a moderate pace.
As you wander, you’ll see many, many groups ahead of and behind you.
Somehow it’s not too bad, as you are spaced out and never intrude on one another.
Stay close to the guide as you wander the Hobbit setting and hear all the stories, a well-rehearsed humorous spiel filled with interesting titbits of history and Sir Peter’s filmmaking antics.
There’s plenty of time for photos and selfies in this super cute Hobbit shire.
Take a selfie in front of a Hobbit door.
It’s the stuff of dreams.
Be prepared for a slog up a slippery slope as you head up the hill towards the giant (fake) Oak Tree, back towards the Mill, and over water to the elegant Green Dragon Inn.
Luckily, there’s a few places to sit down and rest when you need to catch your breath.
Visit the Green Dragon Inn at Hobbiton
End the tour with a complimentary glass of one of Hobbiton’s own exclusive drinks – brewed ales, apple cider or non-alcoholic ginger beer.
We nabbed chairs by the fire, enjoying the picturesque elf-like surroundings of this enchanting pub.
Be quick if you want to eat something from the snack menu at the Green Dragon™ – you have about 20 minutes to wolf it down.
It’s our only complaint about the tour.
20 minutes in the Green Dragon is simply not long enough to soak up the magic!
Hobbiton Evening Banquet Tour
If eating a decadent meal in the Green Dragon Inn at Hobbiton is on your bucket list, join the Hobbiton Evening Banquet Tour for a banquet feast fit for a Hobbit, or a King.
This Hobbiton Movie Set events tour includes an exclusive look at Hobbiton at night, and a secret celebration too.
Evening Banquet Tours depart four times per week on Sunday, Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday evenings all year round, with additional departures subject to demand over summer.
Hobbiton Souvenirs to buy
Have a look at some of the Hobbiton souvenirs you can buy in the Shire Store and Hobbiton Gift shop at the end of the tour.
There’s a tonne, including exclusive Hobbiton souvenirs and Hobbit memorabilia, including Hobbit ears!
You’ll be hard pushed to leave empty-handed.
If you want to find accommodation near Hobbiton, check out these Hobbiton farm stays.
Or if you desperately want to sleep a night in your very own Hobbit Hole, book one of these two Hobbit Hole hotel rooms at Woodlyn Park.
(You can also sleep in a Bristol Freightor plane, in a train carriage, or on a landlocked ship at Woodlyn Park motel too!)
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Where is Hobbiton in New Zealand?
Wondering where in New Zealand is Hobbiton?
Join the club.
Hobbiton is an hour north-west of Rotorua, 15 minutes drive into the hills from the main town hub of Matamata.
It’s in the centre of the North Island, between Auckland, Rotorua, Waitomo, and Hamilton.
Where was the Hobbit filmed?
The Hobbit was filmed throughout New Zealand, on both the North and South Islands.
The Hobbit movie set was constructed on this land near Matamata, and remains in place for visitors to check out.
Can you go inside a Hobbit House?
You can go inside one of the Hobbit houses. The one with the red door. (See main picture).
But it’s just a photo opportunity.
There’s just rammed earth walls and storage areas behind it.
What’s the best Hobbit Door?
There’s 39 Hobbit doors around the Hobbiton set.
(Some say 44, but that’s not the official word)
You get to pick your favorite!
How many Hobbit movies are there?
There are 3 Hobbiton™ movie films.
- The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey.
- The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug.
- The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies.
How many Lord of the Rings movies are there?
There are 3 also.
- The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring.
- The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers.
- The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King.
Are they still filming at Hobbiton?
Filming has finished.
Tours to Hobbiton are the only way in now.
Who owns Hobbiton Movie Set?
The Alexander Family, who own the farm on which the movie set was established, in partnership with Sir Peter Jackson.
More than 800,000 people have visited since Russell Alexander conducted his first tour, back in December 2002.
THE INSIDE SCOOP: Visit Hobbiton in Matamata
Correct at time of publication on Roam the Gnome. Please check with venue for updates. We apologise in advance if there have been any changes we are unaware of. All prices in AUD dollars, unless otherwise stated
Hobbiton Movie Set prices
If you book through the official website:
Hobbiton from Shires Rest or Matamata
The Hobbiton entrance fee from The Shires Rest and Matamata i-SITE including bus transfers is $84 NZ for adults 17 years +, $42 NZ for kids 9-16, and FREE for kids 0-8.
(You must book a ticket for everyone in your party, including kids under 8 to secure a seat on the bus.)
Book Shire’s Rest if you are self-driving direct to the Hobbiton ticket office there – it’s across the road from the entry gates, or from Matamata if you don’t have independent transport from Matamata.
It’s another 15 minute drive from Matamata to the Hobbiton ticket office
Hobbiton from Rotorua
Hobbiton prices for the tour and transfers from Rotorua are $119 NZ adults, $77 child 9-16, and $35 for kids 0-8 (transfer fee only).
Add a Meal to your Tour Booking
Add a meal to your tour.
Festive feast lunch costs an extra $36 per person for anyone 9 years and above.
A breakfast feast is $26 NZ per person extra for anyone 9 years and above. Book meals at the same time as you book your Hobbiton tickets.
How long is the Hobbiton Tour?
Wondering how long is Hobbiton movie set tour?
The tour runs for approximately 2 hours if you depart from Shires Rest.
3 hours including transport from Matamata, and 4.5 hours return if you depart from Rotorua.
Where to buy Hobbiton Tickets
It’s the easiest way to guarantee your spot so you don’t miss out.
You can also buy Hobbiton tickets online from the offical site to secure your spot, or in person when you arrive in New Zealand at the Matamata i-SITE, The Shire’s Rest ticketing office, or the Hobbiton Rotorua store.
The only way to access the Hobbiton Movie Set and see the hobbit houses in New Zealand is with a fully guided walking tour. Please arrive 15 minutes early to your departure point to avoid missing the bus.
Pre-booking your Hobbiton tour is essential.
Tours can sell-out well in advance so please pre-book to avoid disappointment.
Is there a Hobbiton discount code?
Compare your prices before you buy.
Hobbiton Promo Code?
Looking for a Hobbiton Tours promo code?
We’ve been unsuccessful in finding a current Hobbiton promo code to use at Hobbiton, or any other Hobbiton deals.
Your best bet for discount entry is through one of the Group Buying sites listed above.
This is the window from which Sam spied on Frodo at Bag End.
Is the Hobbiton Movie Set Tour worth it?
A zillion visitors will agree with me.
It’s definitely worth it.
You can’t see anything like it anywhere else in the world.
How to get to Hobbiton
All you need to know about how to visit Hobbiton movie set.
By Self Drive Car:
- If you are self-driving, head straight to the Shires Rest at 501 Buckland Road, Hinuera, Matamata as there are no off-set transfers included.
- Click here for driving maps from most major cities
Parking: Free parking onsite at The Shire’s Rest for cars and RV vans.
How long does it take to drive to Hobbiton?
- Auckland to Hobbiton by car takes approximately 2.5 hours.
- Waitomo to Hobbiton by car takes an hour and 15 minutes.
- Rotorua to Hobbiton by car takes an hour.
- Hamilton to Hobbiton takes 45 minutes by car.
By Official Hobbiton Tour Bus:
- Hobbiton Tours depart the Matamata i-SITE regularly from 9.30 to 3.30. Additional tours departing at 3.30pm operate 1 Sep to 30 Sep. From 01 Oct 2018, Tours depart daily at 8.45am, 10.05am, 11.25am, 12.45pm, 2.05pm, and 3.25pm. Additional tours departing at 4.45pm may operate on all or selected dates between 01 Dec to 28 Feb .
- Hobbiton Shire tours depart the Hobbiton Movie Set shop at 1235 Fenton Street Rotorua at 8am and 1.20pm. Tour from Rotorua is approximately 5 hours long. Additional departure times are scheduled if these ones book out.
New Zealand weather is extremely changeable. Bring raincoats or wind jackets just in case. Hobbiton provides giant umbrellas for the walking tour. These must be shared between two.
This is the entry road in to Hobbiton
Facilities at Hobbiton
Toilets: Yes, including baby change table, at the Shire’s Rest. More toilets at the Green Dragon Inn. No toilets in Hobbiton Shire, so make a quick stop before you embark on your tour.
Disability access: Yes
Closest ATM: Credit cards and EFTPOS accepted at Hobbiton cafe and stores
Ground cover: Can be slippery when wet. Wear good walking shoes.
Picnic tables: Yes, at the Shire Cafe. Click here for the menu.
Notes: Hobbiton was last reviewed in 2019.
Toadstool Rating- Hobbiton The Shire
More fun than we ever imagined!
Looking for More Things to Do in New Zealand for Kids near Matamata?
Click the blue links below for more things to do in Rotorua, Auckland, Waitomo and Taupo.