Explore Your Own Backyard

The Explore Movie Magic in Your Own Backyard Competition is now closed - but that doesn’t mean you can’t discover the movie magic that awaits in the Hamilton & Waikato region for yourself - read on for more information about Hobbiton Movie Set, the Waitomo Caves, and much more that the region has for you to discover this Summer!

Explore Your Own Backyard This Summer


Explore your own backyard and discover ancient bush-clad mountains, long stretching surf beaches, underground adventure, movie magic and much more.

Premier surfing destination Raglan has one of the longest left-hand breaks in the world and its relaxed bohemian atmosphere and idyllic coastal setting makes it a real slice of kiwi paradise .

With a flourishing arts scene and spectacular walking and cycling tracks such as Bridal Veil Falls and Waikato River Trails, Hamilton & Waikato is the ideal location for a laid-back escape or active weekend.

Experience Hamilton City’s nightlife scene, fine restaurants and wineries; opt for some pampering in natural mineral spas; discover hidden gems on a kayak tour or waterfall trek; or get your heart pumping with adventure activities of all kinds.

The ‘Explore Movie Magic in Your Own Backyard’ competition is now closed.

Thank you to everyone who entered the Explore Movie Magic in Your Own Backyard Competition.

Congratulations to all the lucky winners. All winners have been contacted via email.

Movie Magic at Hobbiton Movie Set


In the heart of Hamilton & Waikato’s countryside, on a sheep farm near Matamata, quietly hidden behind green rolling hills, is a place unlike any other. Hobbiton Movie Set provides visitors with first-hand insights into the details that went into creating the set.

The hobbit holes, Green Dragon Inn, mill and other structures created for the The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit films can be viewed and you will see how this beautiful piece of Waikato farmland was transformed into The Shire from Middle-earth.

The set has been completely rebuilt and will remain as it was seen in The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit trilogies There are spectacular views across to the Kaimai Ranges from the rolling green hills of the movie set, which is still a working sheep and beef farm.