• Lord of the Rings
    Family Highlights

Lord of the Rings Family Highlights

This journey into Middle Earth is packed with all of the Lord of the Rings family highlights you can think of.  Suitable for families that are film enthusiasts.  With limited time, you will experience some exciting and thrilling activities, while visiting The Hobbit and Lord of the Rings film locations.

Highlights: Hobbiton Movie Set Tour & Banquet, Maori Hangi & Cultural Show, Chetwood Forest Tour, Edoras Tour, One Ring Tour, Dart River Jet and Funyaks.

Day By Day


Welcome to Middle Earth

On your arrival into Auckland, you will be met and transferred to your city hotel.  The remainder of the day is yours to explore.

Auckland city centre offers world-class shopping, restaurants, bars and galleries which are encircled by wine regions, stunning beaches, pristine rainforest and the magnificent Hauraki Gulf.

Auckland City Hotel, Two Bedroom Suite with Full Breakfast  *

Erected in 1912, the building has been extended and transformed into a captivating boutique Hotel. Retaining its iconic facade with its ideal combination of inventive design and traditional efficiency, Auckland City Hotel has retained the character and charm of its past enhanced with a relaxing contemporary decor.

 *If you are arriving early from an International Flight, please see our team about pre-registering your room for guaranteed access on your arrival. (at additional cost)



Today is at leisure.

Optional Activities:
Choose from a range of activities in the ‘City of Sail’s from Harbour Cruises, a visit to Kelly Tarltons, zip lining on Waiheke Island or take a gentle cycle along the waterfront with fish & chip’s for lunch.

Auckland City Hotel, Two Bedroom Suite with Full Breakfast


Auckland to Matamata

Today’s Drive Time & Distance: – Auckland/Matamata: 2 hours, 160km’s (99 miles)

Collect your Full Size 4WD rental vehicle (Toyota Highlander or similar) with all-inclusive insurance

Passengers: 5   Bags: 3 x Large and 2x Small
Key Features: Automatic Transmission, 5 Door 4WD, Air Conditioning and Dual Airbags

The ultimate day of Lord of the Rings highlights! Travel to Matamata, where the town’s main attraction comes from the film industry after the Alexander brothers farm became the Shire in Peter Jackson’s Lord of the Rings movie trilogy.

Today you will experience Middle Earth with a two hour tour of the Hobbiton Movie Set, you will be guided around the set, past Hobbit Holes, the Mill and into the famous Green Dragon dining room for a banquet feast fit for a Hobbit.

The tables will be heaving with traditional Hobbit fayre and, as is the tradition in the Shire, second helpings are encouraged.   After dinner, re-join your guide and make your way back through The Shire breathtakingly lit up, with Hobbit Hole chimneys smoking and lanterns glowing in the dark.

Please note: Evening Banquet Tours take place twice a week on a Wednesday & Sunday evening all year round. Monday, Tuesdays and Thursday Evening Banquet tours may begin for a limited time period over summer. Limited numbers, bookings are essential.

Local Country/Farm Stay, 2x Rooms with Breakfast

Enjoy an authentic overnight experience with a New Zealand family on a Country / Farm stay in Matamata.   We have a range of farmstays available in Matamata, typically dairy farms, mixed farms eg. cattle and sheep, and also Horse Studs.


Matamata to Rotorua

Today’s Drive Time & Distance: – Matamata/Rotorua: 1 hour, 67km’s (42 miles)

Continue to Rotorua, a volcanic wonderland and a place that is rich in Maori culture and history.

This evening, experience a challenge by Maori warriors, a karanga (call) from the women welcoming you onto the marae, and a whaikorero (welcome speech). Following the formal elements of this ceremony, relax and enjoy the beautiful waiata (songs), the world-renowned haka (challenge), and the elegant poi dance.   You will have a chance to participate before sitting down to enjoy traditional and indigenous hangi dinner (earth oven cooked meal).   Following dessert, return into the park and enjoy inspired delicacies and a hot drink beside the Pohutu geyser.

Sudima Hotel Lake Rotorua, Family Room with Full Breakfast

Set on the shores of Lake Rotorua, adjacent to the Polynesian Spa complex, Government Gardens and only a five-minute stroll to the city centre. Offering 248 well appointed rooms, many with superb views of Lake Rotorua and a 3.5 star Qualmark Hotel grading.


Rotorua to Nelson

Fly to Nelson (flight not included).

The Christ Church Cathedral looks over the city streets where you will find boutique shops, art galleries and alfresco dining. Along Wakefield Quay, Nelson’s picturesque waterfront, you will find several restaurants with views across the harbour to the mountains.

Grand Mercure Nelson Monaco Apartment, Two Bedroom Cottage with Full Breakfast

Surrounded by picturesque cottage gardens with handcrafted buildings overlooking a grassy village green, this is a resort with heart! Grand Mercure Nelson Monaco is built from handmade bricks and timber salvaged from the Nelson Wharf which was built in 1842.   Within the Monaco Resort you’ll find a boutique jewelry shop, an award winning hair salon, a luxurious health and beauty salon, along with a solar heated swimming pool and gymnasium.



Join today’s guide for your Chetwood Forest (Hobbit’s Holiday) Tour.   Travel through ever changing and diverse landscapes of Upper Moutere, Riwaka to Marble Mountain.

At Marble mountain, enjoy magnificent views from Hawkes lookout, looking down the Riwaka Valley, across Tasman Bay towards Nelson and the Marlborough Sounds. Gain an understanding of the plumbing of the mountain and its unique and ancient geology which created the fascinating rock shapes that inspired the film makers of The Hobbit trilogy. Exploration of the mountain would not be complete without a visit into middle earth via the Ngarua Caves which exit into clusters of strange rock formations. Continue to where the Hobbits, lead by Aragorn, fled from Bree and the Black Riders into Chetwood Forest and pause to enjoy a Hobbit feast and washed down with middle earth refreshments. A nearby beech forest walk will enliven the afternoon and have your imagination working overtime until you reach Harwoods Hole – the deepest known vertical shaft in New Zealand!

Grand Mercure Nelson Monaco Apartment, Two Bedroom Cottage with Full Breakfast


Nelson to Christchurch

Today’s Drive Time & Distance: 5.5 hours, 415 km’s (258 miles)

Following the 2010-2011 earthquakes, Christchurch has re-emerged as a vibrant and ever-changing city.  If time permits, we suggest visiting the Margaret Mahy Family Playground – the largest playground in the Southern Hemisphere.

Rydges Latimer, Two Bedroom Suite with Full Breakfast

The hotel is located just two minutes walking distance from the city centre and an easy driving distance from a range of local attractions and activities. The hotel overlooks Latimer Square and features 138 guest rooms and home to an excellent restaurant and bar.



Join your Edoras, Lord of the Rings Tour and journey to the filming location of Mount Sunday, remotely located at Mt Potts high country station. See how this peaceful mountain was transformed into Edoras, the capital city of the Rohan and home to Meduseld, the hall of King Theoden in the Lord of the Rings trilogy. Take in the natural, unspoilt beauty of this breath-taking area with sparkling clear lakes, glistening blue rivers and fresh mountain air.

Rydges Latimer, Two Bedroom Suite with Full Breakfast


Christchurch to Lake Tekapo

Today’s Drive Time & Distance: 3 hours, 228km’s (141 miles)

This morning, you will have further time to explore Christchurch before your drive to Lake Tekapo.

In June 2012 the Aoraki Mackenzie region, encompassing Lake Tekapo, was approved as one of only a few International Dark Sky Reserves (IDSR) worldwide. It is the world’s largest gold rated IDSR, meaning the darkness of our night skies is almost unbeatable!  This evening, there is an opportunity to take in the southern skies at Mt John Observatory (additional cost applies) or enjoy the hot pools at Tekapo Springs (additional cost applies).

Peppers Bluewater Resort Lake Tekapo, Two Bedroom Mountainview Villa with Full Breakfast

Peppers Bluewater Resort is the perfect place to relax and unwind during your stay in Lake Tekapo. Enjoy the breath-taking views out over the lake, as well as interior furnishings that are inspired by the natural beauty of the surrounding landscape.  Rooms are designed with large windows, Wifi and underfloor heating.


Lake Tekapo to Queenstown

Today’s Drive Time & Distance: 3 hours, 256 km’s (159 miles)

Continue the short distance through the Mackenzie Country to Twizel for your visit to Pelennor Fields.   This two hour classic tour will have you learning more about movie making, finding locations in and around Twizel, setting up stunts, visual effects, and finding extras for large armies!  You will also have the chance to use official Lord of the Rings replica swords and wear a limited edition Gondorian helmet.

Continue to Queenstown, the backdrop for several Lord of the Rings movie sites.

Heartland Hotel Queenstown, Family Room (View) with Full Breakfast

 Your Swiss-style chalet in the hills. Perched above the town centre, the Hotel has a distinctive A-frame architecture which helps to create a traditional alpine atmosphere. Situated on Stanley Street, the Hotel is the ideal place to stay if you want to be close to all the action of Queenstown’s main centre, yet be elevated enough to take advantage of the spectacular views over lake Wakatipu to the mountains.



Today, your family will combine an hour of high-speed wilderness jet boating through the waters of the Dart River into the Te Waipounamu World Heritage Area to your Funyak launch site.  Your friendly guides will take you on an inspiring adventure as you gently drift in your own Funyak, an inflatable canoe.  This is a fun way to explore the Dart River as well as hidden side streams, rock pools and dramatic chasms. Enjoy the peace and tranquility of this stunning area at your own pace as you float downstream on sparkling water, then enjoy a wilderness picnic lunch before heading past ‘Paradise’ and on to Glenorchy. Return to Queenstown via a back-country route passing by locations used in movies to illustrate Middle Earth.


  • Explore various Lord of the Rings Filming Sites
  • Take a thrilling Jet boat ride and gentle Funyak (inflatable canoe) trip on Dart River

Heartland Hotel Queenstown, Family Room (View) with Full Breakfast



Today is at leisure – we suggest exploring Milford Sound’s stunning fiord from the air and on the water. This optional tour (at additional cost) departs Queenstown and has you flying over land where many parts of the Lord of the Rings trilogy and The Hobbit was filmed and have the possibility of being piloted by Alfie, who did the aerial filming for the movies (request only).   Once in Milford, cruise past sheer cliffs, gushing waterfalls and perhaps even spot dolphins, seals and penguins. Return to Queenstown, flying past spectacular rivers, valleys and mountains and landing upon Mt Tutoko glacier.

Heartland Hotel Queenstown, Family Room (View) with Full Breakfast


Depart Queenstown

Your Lord of the Rings Film Locations holiday concludes today with the return of your rental vehicle.

Connect with your onwards flights (flight not included).


Mount Cook

Visit New Zealand's Aoraki Mt Cook, our highest peak. It stands at 3724 metres ... Read more

Contact Details

Phone Us
+64 3 3555 990
+64 21 461 971

Our Physical Address
21 Verona Place, Ohoka
Christchurch 7692
New Zealand

Our Postal Address
PO Box 36437, Merivale
Christchurch 8146
New Zealand


Tour Inclusions

Lord of the Rings Family Highlights

Terms & Conditions

Booking Terms & Conditions:


All pricing is in New Zealand Dollars and includes 15% GST (Goods & Services Tax).


Pricing is subject to availability and confirmation of the stated itinerary at time of booking.  If we are unable to confirm the stated hotels and services, we will endeavour to confirm substitutes at similar rates, however additional costs may apply.

Rental Car Terms & Conditions:

Inclusions: unlimited kilometres, airport/ferry collection fee, full insurance (subject to reduced excess), front windscreen cover, personal accident insurance, guaranteed replacement vehicle in case of accident.

Exclusions: insurance excess reduction of $345.00 including GST (note, standard insurance excess is $3,450.00 including GST), bond, petrol costs, one way fee ($57.50), optional extras, (all additional expenses to be paid direct)

Payment Policy

We do require a non-refundable deposit of NZD$250.00 per person before we go ahead with securing any reservations.

In addition, some of our suppliers may require further deposits to cover their strict cancellation policies, in this case we would advise you at the time of quoting and confirming your itinerary.

The balance of your booking would be required 45 days prior to your travel date.   If you book inside 45 days, full payment would be required at time of booking.

Payment can be made by electronic wire transfer and should include the additional NZD $25.00 bank fee.   We also accept Visa and Mastercard at an additional fee of 3.1%.

Bank Account Details

Bank Name & Address: Westpac Bank, Mid City Queen Street, Auckland, New Zealand

Account Name: Inspired New Zealand Travel

BSB Number: 03-0296

Account Number: 0011146-000

Swift/Routing Code: WPACNZ2W 


We are happy to amend your itinerary and dates, however please keep in mind that some of the original services may not be available for your new dates, which may incur additional costs for substituted services.   Amendment fees may apply with multiple changes.

Cancellation Fees

Once Confirmed               Non-refundable Deposit of NZD $250.00 per person

Inside 45 – 21 Days          A Cancellation fee of 30% of your total booking value will apply, along with any cancellation fees applied by our accommodation, sightseeing and other providers.

Inside 20 – 8 days             A Cancellation fee of 50% of your total booking value will apply, along with any cancellation fees applied by our accommodation, sightseeing and other providers.

Inside 7 Days                      Full Cancellations, 100% charge

We will however do our very best to recover and minimise these cancellation fees but recommend that you purchase Travel Insurance to cover yourself.


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