Overview

Discover the best North Island sites as seen in The Lord of the Rings films. This Lord Of The Rings North Island Motorhome Adventure itinerary in New Zealand was created in partnership with Shaun Jeffers, the official Hobbiton™ Movie Set photographer. Starting and finishing in Auckland, this self drive adventure will take you to the Hobbiton™ Movie Set, a hike to Mordor, Hairy Feet and the Weta Workshop, where much of the magic was created for the movies.

Trip Photos Copyright of Shaun Jeffers Photography, the official Hobbiton™ Movie Set photographer.

MAD2 Campers  Kiwi Motorhome Rental

Auckland - Hamilton - Rotorua - Taupo - Wellington - Taranaki - Waitomo - Raglan - Auckland

Map of 12 Day Lord Of The Rings North Island Motorhome Adventure
View itinerary for day 1
View itinerary for day 2
View itinerary for day 3
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View itinerary for day 8
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View itinerary for day 11
View itinerary for day 12
Auckland to Hamilton
Hamilton to Rotorua
Rotorua
Rotorua to Taupo
Taupo
Taupo to Wellington
Wellington
Wellington to Taranaki
Taranaki to Waitomo
Waitomo
Waitomo to Raglan

Day 1

Auckland to Hamilton

Travel Time: 1 hr 45 mins

Distance: 125 kms

Day 2

Hamilton to Rotorua

Travel Time: 1 hr 30 mins

Distance: 100 kms

Day 3

Rotorua

Day 4

Rotorua to Taupo

Travel Time: 1 hr

Distance: 80 kms

Day 5

Taupo

Day 6

Taupo to Wellington

Travel Time: 5 hrs

Distance: 400 kms

Day 7

Wellington

Day 8

Wellington to Taranaki

Travel Time: 4 hrs

Distance: 325 kms

Day 9

Taranaki to Waitomo

Travel Time: 3 hrs

Distance: 220 kms

Day 10

Waitomo

Day 11

Waitomo to Raglan

Travel Time: 1 hr 20 mins

Distance: 90 kms

Day 12

Raglan to Auckland

Travel Time: 2 hrs

Distance: 150 kms

Start your trip in the vibrant harbour capital of New Zealand. Pick up your campervan in Auckland and make your way to Hamilton. Get excited as you will go on the official Hobbiton™ Movie Set Tour! 

Rotorua is a dream photography location. Known as the geothermic capital of New Zealand, you’ll have plenty of options to explore. Head out to the magical Redwoods Forest before experiencing a cultural show and dinner at the traditional Tamaki Māori Village.

On your second day in Rotorua, you are armed with the Diamond Pass. This gives you access to Te Puia, Skyline Rotorua Gondola, Agrodome, Polynesian Spa and a choice of either Rainbow Springs or Paradise Valley Springs. We highly recommend that you don’t miss the mighty Te Puia!

Make your way to Taupo to visit Gollum’s Pool (Tawhai Falls), where the famous scene of The Lord of the Rings movie was filmed.  Another must-see is the Huka Falls. This incredible spectacle is the most-visited natural attraction in New Zealand – it’s hard to tear your gaze away from the endless, mesmerising torrent.

Today, you get to experience Mordor! Tongariro Alpine Crossing is the filming location of Mordor and also known as the country’s best day walk. This 19-km hike through landscape made famous in The Lord of the Rings trilogy is well worth the effort. A shuttle bus from Taupo will take you to the start of the hike. Shorter walks to Mordor are also available.

On your way to Peter Jackson's home town of Wellington, you come across another Lord of the Rings film location, the Putangirua Pinnacles. Doubled as the Dimholt Road in The Return of the King, don’t miss your chance to walk the Paths of the Death!

Then it’s time to visit Wellington, the capital of New Zealand. This vibrant city is full of trendy restaurants, cafes and breweries and has a great live music scene. 

Embark on a journey through Wellington's award-winning Weta Studio & Workshop. Immerse yourself in blockbuster behind-the-scenes magic from Lord of the Rings, Hobbiton and countless other Hollywood blockbusters. Enjoy a 5-hour experience with 2 film effects tours, a 2-course lunch and drink on the waterfront. You will also receive a souvenir to remember your Weta experience. 

Taranaki is often missed by travellers, but worth the stop to experience the raw beauty of the North Island. Visit the famous The Three Sisters on the coast or if you’re feeling adventurous, hike to Mt Taranaki for the incredible views.

Waitomo is world-famous for its Glowworm Caves and vast limestone formations. This area is also known as Hairy Feet, used for The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey. Today it’s time for the ultimate adventure caving tour, the Black Abyss. Feel the adrenaline as you abseil into the dark, seemingly bottomless depths of Ruakuri Cave. Zipline through a gallery of glowworms and climb underground waterfalls as you test your limits on this truly unforgettable journey.

Join a tour to Hairy Feet and Trollshaws Forest. Visit the stunning farm location at Mangaotaki Rocks Piopio, near Waitomo, where the troll and campfire scenes in The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey were filmed. Towering limestone cliffs, massive rock formations and a primaeval forest on the Denize family farm became the location for Staddle Farm and Trollshaws.

Drive to the lively town of Raglan, New Zealand’s surf mecca. Discover the creative culture, great coffees and surf breaks. Perhaps, catch a wave yourself! 

On your way to Auckland, visit the final Lord of the Rings filming location of your trip. Stop at Port Waikato, where the mighty Waikato River meets the ocean. Journey south along the coast to the Nikau caves and past the limestone outcrops in the surrounding hills to find Weathertop Hollow. In Auckland, it’s time to drop off your campervan. 

Day 1, Auckland to Hamilton

Auckland to Hamilton

Travel Time: 1 hr 45 mins

Distance: 125 kms

Start your trip in the vibrant harbour capital of New Zealand. Pick up your campervan in Auckland and make your way to Hamilton. Get excited as you will go on the official Hobbiton™ Movie Set Tour! 

Day 2, Hamilton to Rotorua

Hamilton to Rotorua

Travel Time: 1 hr 30 mins

Distance: 100 kms

Rotorua is a dream photography location. Known as the geothermic capital of New Zealand, you’ll have plenty of options to explore. Head out to the magical Redwoods Forest before experiencing a cultural show and dinner at the traditional Tamaki Māori Village.

Day 3, Rotorua

Rotorua

On your second day in Rotorua, you are armed with the Diamond Pass. This gives you access to Te Puia, Skyline Rotorua Gondola, Agrodome, Polynesian Spa and a choice of either Rainbow Springs or Paradise Valley Springs. We highly recommend that you don’t miss the mighty Te Puia!

Day 4, Rotorua to Taupo

Rotorua to Taupo

Travel Time: 1 hr

Distance: 80 kms

Make your way to Taupo to visit Gollum’s Pool (Tawhai Falls), where the famous scene of The Lord of the Rings movie was filmed.  Another must-see is the Huka Falls. This incredible spectacle is the most-visited natural attraction in New Zealand – it’s hard to tear your gaze away from the endless, mesmerising torrent.

Day 5, Taupo

Taupo

Today, you get to experience Mordor! Tongariro Alpine Crossing is the filming location of Mordor and also known as the country’s best day walk. This 19-km hike through landscape made famous in The Lord of the Rings trilogy is well worth the effort. A shuttle bus from Taupo will take you to the start of the hike. Shorter walks to Mordor are also available.

Day 6, Taupo to Wellington

Taupo to Wellington

Travel Time: 5 hrs

Distance: 400 kms

On your way to Peter Jackson's home town of Wellington, you come across another Lord of the Rings film location, the Putangirua Pinnacles. Doubled as the Dimholt Road in The Return of the King, don’t miss your chance to walk the Paths of the Death!

Then it’s time to visit Wellington, the capital of New Zealand. This vibrant city is full of trendy restaurants, cafes and breweries and has a great live music scene. 

Day 7, Wellington

Wellington

Embark on a journey through Wellington's award-winning Weta Studio & Workshop. Immerse yourself in blockbuster behind-the-scenes magic from Lord of the Rings, Hobbiton and countless other Hollywood blockbusters. Enjoy a 5-hour experience with 2 film effects tours, a 2-course lunch and drink on the waterfront. You will also receive a souvenir to remember your Weta experience. 

Day 8, Wellington to Taranaki

Wellington to Taranaki

Travel Time: 4 hrs

Distance: 325 kms

Taranaki is often missed by travellers, but worth the stop to experience the raw beauty of the North Island. Visit the famous The Three Sisters on the coast or if you’re feeling adventurous, hike to Mt Taranaki for the incredible views.

Day 9, Taranaki to Waitomo

Taranaki to Waitomo

Travel Time: 3 hrs

Distance: 220 kms

Waitomo is world-famous for its Glowworm Caves and vast limestone formations. This area is also known as Hairy Feet, used for The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey. Today it’s time for the ultimate adventure caving tour, the Black Abyss. Feel the adrenaline as you abseil into the dark, seemingly bottomless depths of Ruakuri Cave. Zipline through a gallery of glowworms and climb underground waterfalls as you test your limits on this truly unforgettable journey.

Day 10, Waitomo

Waitomo

Join a tour to Hairy Feet and Trollshaws Forest. Visit the stunning farm location at Mangaotaki Rocks Piopio, near Waitomo, where the troll and campfire scenes in The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey were filmed. Towering limestone cliffs, massive rock formations and a primaeval forest on the Denize family farm became the location for Staddle Farm and Trollshaws.

Day 11, Waitomo to Raglan

Waitomo to Raglan

Travel Time: 1 hr 20 mins

Distance: 90 kms

Drive to the lively town of Raglan, New Zealand’s surf mecca. Discover the creative culture, great coffees and surf breaks. Perhaps, catch a wave yourself! 

Day 12, Raglan to Auckland

Travel Time: 2 hrs

Distance: 150 kms

On your way to Auckland, visit the final Lord of the Rings filming location of your trip. Stop at Port Waikato, where the mighty Waikato River meets the ocean. Journey south along the coast to the Nikau caves and past the limestone outcrops in the surrounding hills to find Weathertop Hollow. In Auckland, it’s time to drop off your campervan. 

Additional Information

Pricing

Cost per person twin share (May to September 2020)

Motorhome options (all certified self-contained):

  • Standard MAD2 campervan: From AU$2,164*
  • Mid-Range Kiwi Motorhome: From AU$3,660*
  • Premium Kiwi Motorhome: From AU$4,160*

* PLEASE NOTE *

Prices quoted are based on a Motorhome, with 2 people sharing based on low season prices May to September. Please contact us for rates for 3 or more people sharing a 4 or 6 Berth Motorhome.

Prices are estimates only, and are subject to availability and exchange rates when booking, seasonal or holiday price surcharges (such as Christmas/New Year and Easter); as well as special events that may be on. Please forward a request and we will be happy to forward a quote.

  • Deposit: 10% at time of booking
  • Full Payment: 90 Days before travel

Cancellation Charges

Cancellation Fees up to 100% can apply after booking. Extra deposits or full payment may be requested to cover these charges prior to booking.

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Includes

Includes:

  • 14 days Motorhome hire
  • Access to Travel Guide Created by the Official Hobbiton™ Photographer, Including Free Activities, Hikes and Food Recommendations
  • Hobbiton™ Movie Set Tour
  • Tamaki Māori - Evening experience
  • Rotorua Global Pass
  • Tongariro Alpine Crossing - Shuttle Bus
  • Full Experience + Kai (Lunch) - Weta Workshop
  • Hairy Feet tour
  • Black Water Rafting - Black Labyrinth Tour

Motorhome Inclusions

  • Free Airport pickup
  • 24 hour AA Roadside Assistance
  • Multiple insurance excess reduction options
  • Unlimited Kilometres
  • Fully Serviced
  • Internal Table
  • Air Conditioning
  • Free linen
  • Huge double bed
  • "The Ultimate Satisfaction Commitment" - we'll do whatever it takes to ensure your trip goes smoothly

Options

Choose from 3 Motorhome options (all Certified Self Contained):

  • Standard option: MAD2 campervan, 2 Berth Auto
  • Mid-Range option: Kiwi Motorhome: 6 Berth Auto
  • Premium option: Kiwi Motorhome, 6 Berth Auto

All vehicles are automatic motorhomes, with an onboard toilet, kitchenette/kitchen, fridge, a double bed, 24 hour AA Roadside Assistance and Free Airport pickup. 

Itineraries

All itineraries can be amended or combined with other itineraries. Please advise amendments when requesting a quote.

Highlights

Hobbiton™ Movie Set Tour

Experience the real Middle-earth™ at the Hobbiton™ Movie Set, where, in the heart of the Waikato region, you can step into the lush pastures of the Shire™, as seen in The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit trilogies. You will be guided around the 12 acre set; past Hobbit Holes™, the Mill and into the world-famous Green Dragon™ Inn, where you will be presented with a complimentary, exclusive Hobbit™ Southfarthing™ beverage to conclude your own Middle-earth™ adventure

Rotorua

Discover the geothermal capital of New Zealand. Visit Te Puia where you will see the world-famous Pohutu Geyser and experience traditional Māori arts and culture in Rotorua.

Tongariro Alpine Crossing - Mordor

A World Heritage site, acknowledged for both its natural and cultural significance, Tongariro Alpine Crossing is known as New Zealand’s best day hike. This spectacular track will take you to The Lord of the Rings filming location of Mordor.  

Weta Workshop experience

Embark on a journey through Wellington's award-winning Weta Studio & Workshop. Immerse yourself in blockbuster behind-the-scenes magic from The Lord of the Rings, Hobbiton and countless other Hollywood blockbusters.

Hairy Feet & Trollshaw forest

Join a tour to Hairy Feet and Trollshaw forest . Visit the stunning farm location at Mangaotaki Rocks Piopio, near Waitomo, where the troll and campfire scenes in The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey were filmed. Towering limestone cliffs, massive rock formations and a primeval forest on the Denize family farm became the location for Staddle Farm and Trollshaws.

Legendary Black Water Rafting Co. Black Abyss

Feel the adrenaline as you abseil into the dark, seemingly bottomless depths of Ruakuri Cave. Zipline through a gallery of glowworms and climb underground waterfalls as you test your limits on this truly unforgettable journey.

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12 Day Lord Of The Rings North Island Motorhome Adventure

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