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Waitomo TV & movie tours

Our most recommended Waitomo TV & movie tours

Auckland: Hobbiton & Waitomo Bus Tour with Festive Lunch

1. Auckland: Hobbiton & Waitomo Bus Tour with Festive Lunch

See the magical Waitomo Caves and the Hobbiton Movie Set on a full-day sightseeing tour from Auckland. Step on board your luxury GreatSights coach tour and travel south, taking in typical New Zealand scenery as you ride – lush green farmland and rolling hills. The Hobbiton Movie Set has become one of New Zealand’s must-see destinations. A working farm near the small town of Matamata was transformed into a film set for the world-famous Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit movies, and today you can visit the set and see where the magic was created. See highlights like the original Hobbit Holes, the Green Dragon Inn, the Party Tree, and more. Your tour guide will share behind-the-scenes stories and fascinating facts about how the film set was brought to life. After you’ve had your fill of movie magic, sit down to lunch – a delicious feast worthy of a true hobbit – outside the Green Dragon Inn. Then stop at the Waitomo Glowworm Caves, a network of underground tunnels and caves made from incredible limestone formations. Set off on a 45-minute guided tour of the caves, ending with a truly special boat trip through the Glowworm Grotto, where glowworms twinkle and shine overhead as you sail through a dark and silent cavern. After exploring these two top New Zealand visitor attractions, your driver guide will take you back to Auckland, returning in the early evening.

From Auckland: Hobbiton & Waitomo Caves Day Trip with Lunch

2. From Auckland: Hobbiton & Waitomo Caves Day Trip with Lunch

Join this tour to visit two of New Zealand's most iconic and famous attractions, the Hobbiton Movie Set and the Waitomo Glowworm Caves, in a day trip from Auckland.  After pickup from your central Auckland hotel, travel south over the Bombay Hills for panoramic views of the Waikato Region and the scenic Hauraki Plains. Arrive at The Shire's Rest in Matamata, the home of the Hobbiton Movie Set. Your guide will help you skip the crowds so you can explore the Movie Set on an official 2-hour tour. Be escorted through the 10-acre site and learn fascinating details of how the Hobbiton Movie Set was created.  See Hobbit Holes, The Green Dragon Inn, and The Mill. Savor a complimentary specially-brewed beverage at The Green Dragon Inn.  Afterwards, travel to the mesmerizing Waitomo Glowworm Caves, where you'll enjoy a Kiwi-style lunch at The Homestead in Waitomo. On the way, share stories from Hobbiton and interact with your fellow travelers.  Glide silently by boat in the world famous caves and be amazed by the thousands of magical glowworms.  Your guide will likely be a descendant of the Maori Chief who originally explored the Caves and can share with you the remarkable history of the area. Walk through the majestic Cathedral Cove, famous for its acoustics. The return trip takes you through some of New Zealand's most beautiful countryside before following the majestic Waikato River northwards part of the way back to Auckland. You will pass Taupiri with its very sacred Maori burial ground. The day concludes with your return to your accommodation.

Auckland: Hobbiton Movie Set and Waitomo Small Group Tour

3. Auckland: Hobbiton Movie Set and Waitomo Small Group Tour

The tour starts with pickup from Auckland city, where the adventure begins as you drive through the stunning Waikato countryside, the most extensive farming area in the world, on a fully guided journey to Hobbiton. Along the way, don’t forget to take advantage of the photo opportunities as you admire the stunning natural landscapes all around of beautiful mountains and farmlands. After the drive, arrive at Alexander Family Sheep Farm and Shire's Rest, the entrance to Hobbiton, and marvel at the thousands of sheep that live here. While you’re here, grab a bite to eat, a coffee, or enjoy an ice cream to cool off while your guide collects your tickets to the movie set.  Next, hop on board one of the big green Hobbiton buses to depart on your 2-hour fully guided tour of this amazing 12-acre movie set with a professional Hobbiton guide to ensure you get the most out of your visit. During your tour trip into the lush pastures of the Shire, visit 44 hobbit holes, see amazing gardens, hear secrets and stories about the making of the movies and finish your LOTR experience with a cold beverage at the famous Hobbiton pub, The Green Dragon Inn. After your LOTR experience, it’s time to head west towards the stunning Waitomo region. Along the way admire the incredible hydro dams, beautiful farmland, race horses, and the Kiwiana capital of New Zealand. Before arriving at the caves, stop by Waitomo homestead for lunch, and a little surprise. Once in Waitomo, explore the ancient and amazing caves and marvel at the many cave formations including Stalactites, Stalagmites, and Lime Columns before descending even further underground for your Glowworm Grotto experience. Board your glow-worm boat for a cruise on the grotto river with thousands of glowworms sparkling above you. Unique to New Zealand for over 120 years, Waitomo Glowworm Caves are a must-see for any traveler.  On the guided trip back to Auckland the sights continue with New Zealand's longest river, the Huntly power station, and the Maori Queens’ burial site.

From Auckland: Hobbiton & Waitomo Caves Full-Day Trip

4. From Auckland: Hobbiton & Waitomo Caves Full-Day Trip

Depart Auckland and embark on a scenic journey through the beautiful mountains of the Kaimai Range on a 2-hour drive to the Hobbiton Movie Set. Relax aboard a luxury Mercedes vehicle equipped with free Wi-Fi and complimentary snacks and water. On arrival, follow in the footsteps of your favorite Lord of the Rings characters on an official 2-hour guided tour of the 1,250-acre sheep farm where the movie was shot. Get amazing views of the Kaimai Range as you are led through the site to discover the Hobbit Holes, Old Mill and Double-Arched Bridge. Stop for a complimentary drink at The Green Dragon Inn. Continue to the Waitomo Glowworm Caves and learn about the amazing glowworms and the caves' historical and geological aspects on a guided boat ride. Sit back and relax, and enjoy the scenery on the return drive to Auckland, where you will get dropped off at your hotel on arrival. 

From Auckland: Hobbiton, Rotorua & Waitomo Caves Day Trip

5. From Auckland: Hobbiton, Rotorua & Waitomo Caves Day Trip

Visit the Hobbiton Movie Set, Rotorua, and Waitomo Caves in one day on a guided tour from Auckland. See three of North Island’s iconic sites in one attraction-filled day. After hotel pickup, travel from Auckland to Hobbiton through Waikato. On arrival, you’ll be guided through the picturesque twelve-acre site and given fascinating details of how the movie set was created. The official tour concludes with a complimentary drink at the Green Dragon Inn. Climb back into the vehicle for the approximately 55-minute drive to Rotorua where you will spend around 1.5 hours. On arrival, visit key attractions, such as the lakefront, government gardens, and Rachel Springs. After sightseeing, have lunch at Pataka Kai, a restaurant next to the Te Puia thermal reserve. Enjoy views and take photos of Te Puia's Pohutu Geyser and thermal valley from the restaurant (entry not included). After Rotorua, drive to the world-renowned Waitomo Caves where you’ll enter the caves on foot and ride out in a small boat. Above your head will be thousands of tiny glowworms radiating their unmistakable luminescent light as an expert guide provides informative commentary. 

From Auckland: Small-Group Hobbiton and Waitomo Day Tour

6. From Auckland: Small-Group Hobbiton and Waitomo Day Tour

After pickup from your inner city Auckland accommodation, travel south over the Bombay Hills to the rich farmland of the Waikato region. Your driver guide will provide commentary on the way to Hobbiton with insights into the areas you are travelling through, along with some background to The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit movies. On arrival at Shire’s Rest, embark on your Hobbiton movie set tour. This location is the largest “green set” in the world and the only part of the set remaining in New Zealand. See 44 hobbit holes, the Mill, the double arch bridge, and the party tree. At this stunning location you can take a photo at the gate to Bilbo’s house, “Bag End”, whilst looking out over the whole set to the hills in the distance. The tour ends with a visit to the Green Dragon Inn for a drink. Following your drink, you will be treated to a delicious buffet lunch at the The Green Dragon Party Marquee. There is time for shopping before your tour continues to Waitomo. On arrival in Waitomo, join a 45 minute guided tour of the incredible Waitomo Glow Worm Caves. Discover an ancient world 30 million years in the making. Enjoy the delicate cave formations and be wowed in the Cathedral, before taking the iconic boat ride through the glow worm grotto (subject to water levels). Marvel in silence at thousands of magical glow worms, which are unique to New Zealand, before exiting the cave. After your tour at Waitomo, return to Auckland. Enjoy an afternoon tea stop on the way, at your own expense.

Other Sightseeing Options in Waitomo

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What people are saying about Waitomo

Overall rating

4.7 / 5

based on 350 reviews

We were 5 to participate in this tour including 2 people of 65 years old and a child of 9 years old. The van is very comfortable and spacious. The sites to visit do not require too much effort and are easy to access. It's a tour full of magic, we loved it. The Hobbiton-Rotorua-Waitomo combination is done well because the journey is magical from start to finish. The buffet at Te Puia is quite varied, there is something for everyone, and the desserts are good. Our guide Edson, very kind but also very interesting, is the soul of this tour. During the journeys (about 2 hours for each section) he gave us a lot of information about the culture, historical facts, geological formations, also made us jokes and even magic tricks! It's simple, my daughter loved it more than anything else!

A long but great day out. Plenty of time to rest in the minibus between attractions. Minibus very clean, comfortable and spacious. Driver/guide super knowledgeable and friendly. Entrance to all attractions and lunch included so all you have to do is literally turn up and enjoy :)

I loved the tour. Hobbiton in a foggy setting was very lovely, Rotorua was astonishing and the glowworms in the Waitomo caves - magical. We also had a very nice guide who told us a lot about the places we were visiting. I recommend the tour!

Great tour. Rachel, our guide was full of knowledge and both Hobbiton and the glow worm cave were a great experience. Highly recommend the tour.

I loved it and our tour guide was a very helpful and caring person