4.5 star rating: Recommended 148 Reviews

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  • Location:Auckland, New Zealand
  • Duration:12 hours 30 minutes (approx.)

Waitomo Caves and 'The Lord of the Rings' Hobbiton Movie Set Day Trip from Auckland

Go on a Hobbiton tour from Auckland and see the Waitomo Glowworm Caves, starting with a scenic drive through New Zealand’s North Island aboard a luxury coach. You’ll be enthralled by the illuminated Glowworm Grotto during an underground boat ride on the Waitomo River. Then pose for photos in front of hobbit holes at the Hobbiton Movie Set, home to Bilbo Baggins from ‘The Hobbit’ and ‘The Lord of the Rings’ trilogies. End your tour in Rotorua or return to Auckland; picnic lunch included.


  • Full-day tour from Auckland to two of New Zealand’s most magical sites
  • Take a boat ride to the glowworm grotto to see thousands of glowworms twinkling in the darkness
  • Enjoy a delicious picnic lunch and admire the stunning pastoral scenery
  • Explore the Hobbiton Movie Set, where parts of The Lord of the Rings movies were filmed
  • Have you photo taken in front of a hobbit hole!

Recent Photos of This Tour

What You Can Expect

Waitomo Caves and 'The Lord of the Rings' Hobbiton Movie Set Day Trip from Auckland

Waitomo Glowworm Caves

After hotel pickup in Auckland, enjoy a morning snack on board the luxury coach during a scenic drive through the North Island’s rolling hills and lush farmland. Listen to your guide’s commentary as you travel through the Waikato and King Country regions, and learn of the colonial history between British settlers and the Maori in Rangariri.

Upon arrival in Waitomo, you’re taken to the noteworthy Waitomo Caves for a guided tour. Descend underground into the limestone caverns to view stunning stalactites formed over centuries. Drift along the Waitomo River during a short boat ride through the Glowworm Grotto, where a breathtaking display of tiny illuminated lights glow in the darkness. Discover the mystery behind the luminescence of thousands of glowworms before enjoying a provided picnic lunch.  

Your day trip continues across the Kaimai Ranges toward Rotorua and onward to Matamata, where you’ll visit the Hobbiton Movie Set, a working sheep farm and significant filming location for The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings movie series, all of which were filmed throughout New Zealand. Discover how the site was transformed into JRR Tolkien’s The Shire — home of Bilbo Baggins and his fellow hobbits. Have your photo taken in front of a hobbit hole and see the pond, the Mill, the Green Dragon Inn and more. 

Your full-day tour ends in Rotorua or with a return to Auckland and drop-off at your hotel.

Customer Reviews

5 star rating: Highly Recommended November 2015

Great tour and guide

5 star rating: Highly Recommended November 2015

The tour was fabulous! Our guide, Shelly was informative and fun. Each stop was great, couldn't have asked for a better experience. Thanks!

5 star rating: Highly Recommended October 2015

We really appreciated this tour and the friendliness and professionalism of our driver/guide. We recommend this high quality tour!

5 star rating: Highly Recommended October 2015

This is a great tour and the Hobitton Movie Set was more than I expected when it was booked but everything I hoped it would be. Waitomo Caves were fascinating followed by a great meal.The tour bus driver from Auckland to the movie set was absolutely full of valuable information about New Zealand in general and the people. We greatly appreciated his commentary and pleasant way. The bus driver from the movie set to Rotorua kept us guessing and chuckling with his fantasy tales.
A great tour.

5 star rating: Highly Recommended October 2015

The tour itself was fantastic. The only aspect that could be improved was that the bus driver talked, talked, and talked. He didn't seem sure of some of the facts he mentioned, and some topics probably weren't warranted. Nothing offensive, but not necessary either.

5 star rating: Highly Recommended October 2015

Driver very pleasant and informative on the bus, the glow worm caves were unforgettable and a drink in the Green Dragon finished off a great day!

5 star rating: Highly Recommended September 2015

Loved the Guide and loved being in hobbiton! Great pickup and drop off service, couldnt have asked for anything better

5 star rating: Highly Recommended September 2015


5 star rating: Highly Recommended August 2015

I've been to caves and caverns in at least 4 different countries. I've caught fireflies in the rainforest. I have never been so entranced by these experiences as I was yesterday. This is, as our obviously dedicated guide said, one of the wonders of the world. I feel very fortunate to have been able experience this fragile magic! The tour was well-organized and everything went smoothly. The trip to Hobbitton was delightful, and the countryside was the epitome of serenity. And the ginger beer at the Green Dragon was the best I've ever tasted. Again, the guide was extremely knowledgeable and informative.

5 star rating: Highly Recommended August 2015

Even though this was a 12 hour excursion it was great way to see New Zealand. The Caves were absolutely amazing and the tour guides really knew their tours.

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Tour code: 3910GS16H_GS11H


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