Visit The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit film sites, amazing landscapes and New Zealand’s deepest vertical shaft!
Nelson was privileged to host actors for the Lord of the Rings and later the Hobbit movies as there are around seven film sites in the region. The jewellery was also designed and made in Nelson that has made Jens Hansen world famous and a must visit to hold the ‘one ring’ while on tour.
Takaka Hill, with its rocky marble outcrops, served as the location for Chetwood Forest, north of Bree that was featured in The Fellowship of the Rings. This was the initial route of the Hobbits and Strider (Aragorn) on their hasty escape from Bree and the arrival of the Black Riders. The area lies on the border of Kahurangi National Park – the filming location for Dimril Dale and Eregion Hills and the Rough Country South of Rivendell.
Bree is the place where, seemingly by accident, Gandalf and Thorin once met. They were both thinking about the same problem: the dragon Smaug at the Lonely Mountain (Erebor). The meeting led to the undertaking of the Quest of Erebor, which resulted in the death of Smaug and the finding of the One Ring by Bilbo Baggins.
Near the top of Takaka Hill we enter Middle Earth – Ngarua Cave full of stalactites and stalagmites and emerge at the site of the last scene in the Battle of the Five Armies – Bilbo and Ganddolf riding horses through the rocky outcrops.
Several other areas are walked through but the most obvious is where Bilbo Baggins had just caught up with the dwarfs and Gandalf at the start of their adventure in The Unexpected Journey.