Follow in the footsteps of Bilbo, Frodo and Gandalf on a half-day 'Lord of the Rings' tour from Wellington. See where Middle-earth was created in New Zealand’s beautiful countryside on this Wellington 'Lord of the Rings' tour, and discover why the scenic region was chosen to film the famous ‘Lord of the Rings’ and ‘Hobbit’ movies. Visit movie director Peter Jackson’s Wellington production base, Weta Studios, to see where LOTR and Hobbit production was completed, and go behind the scenes on this unique Wellington half-day tour.
This half day tour takes you to the best locations in Wellington City. Explore key sites in the film-making process with your specialist Lord of the Rings guide.
After we pick you up in the city, you drive past the Embassy Cinema, which hosted the world premieres of The Return of the King and An Unexpected Journey. You then visit the Mt Victoria lookout for stunning views across Wellington City and Harbour, before a short descent into a unique pine forest where Peter Jackson began the filming of his epic trilogy. You see such scenes as the “Dunharrow Encampment,” “Shortcut to Mushrooms,” “Race to the Buckleberry Ferry,” and the iconic “Get off the Road” scene, where the Hobbits hid from the Black Riders.
Following this, you’ll take a short trip to Miramar, the home of the Wellington film industry, to visit Weta – the company who designed and fabricated almost everything Middle-earth. We show you the studios and post-production facilities that helped bring these films to screen before settling at the Weta Workshop. Here you have a chance to pose for photos with various characters and marvel at the craftsmanship of the sculptures, armour and weapons on display, and pick up those essential souvenirs and gifts.
Here you watch a behind the scenes documentary that details the history of the Weta company, from its origins through to present day, and enjoy an exclusive behing-the-scenes tour. This fascinating, insider’s look delves into the creativity and ingenuity needed to create the physical effects for some of the biggest and best movies ever, not just Middle-earth! You’ll be surprised by how many films have been made here. It will leave you amazed at the vast influence Weta has had on the film industry and in no doubt why we call the area “Wellywood.”
You then finish the tour with a scenic drive around the harbour back to the city.