• ivoce47

2017 New Zealand Trip - Part 13

Matamata, Waiotapu, Rotarua and Hobbiton

We were staying at Walnut Lodge, very comfortable and lovely hosts.

We set off to Rotarua to the Thermal Areas.

We passed through Tirau where the buildings were very interesting:

We drove past Rotarua for now and headed down to Waiotapu, to the Thermal Wonderland: (see video)

The colours were amazing.

There is a geyser there which they set off every morning but we arrived too late to see it.

We then drove back into Rotarua, where Anthea fed the Black Swans, Ducks and Seagulls!

We sat by Lake Rotarua for lunch, then walked on the lake side and into the town which is a reasonable size. They were setting up for a street market. The new building in the last photo above is a bit out of keeping with the rest of the town. The next to last photo is the Council Offices and Information Centre.

The next day was spent in Hobbiton, the Film set used in "The Lord of the Rings" and "The Hobbit". It was very close to Matamata where we were staying.

The tours were very well organised and the guide was very informative. There were groups of people everywhere, but I mostly managed to exclude them from the photos.

Hobbiton was constructed for the first of the films "The Lord of the Rings" and then demolished. When the second of the films "The Hobbit" was to be filmed it was reinstated and expanded. It was agreed between the owners of the land and the film studio that it could remain.

Was it worth a visit? Definitely!

After visiting Hope and her family in Stratford the day after, (see previous part 12), we set off the next day for Auckland for our final 2 days in New Zealand.....

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