Literary Pilgrimage: Visiting Middle-Earth (Part 3)

Middle-Earth Literary Pilgrimage
Earlier this year, I spent three months travelling around New Zealand. My primary reason for doing so? Exploring locations in featured in The Lord of the Rings/The Hobbit, of course! Come along as I revisit what will likely remain my most extensive ‘literary pilgrimage’.

Queenstown

Queenstown serves as New Zealand’s hub of adventure activities. You can paraglide, jetboat, bungy jump, and visit a variety of The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit filming locations! …That’s adventure enough for me. (I did have plans to go mountain biking but I scrapped that to save some cash.) Queenstown was a key hub of filming for both The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit, making it a must do for any literary pilgrimage like mine. To see all the locations in the area, you would need two or three days. I picked a half day tour hitting the sites that most interested. I took Pure Glenorchy‘s half-day tour.

Frodo and Sam see an Oliphaunt This is the ledge that Frodo and Sam peered over to spot the Oliphaunt in The Two Towers.Rangers cross the river

Although this little river doesn’t look too impressive, I was excited to see how similar it was to the film (where it appears for about two seconds), and to be standing to close to where Faramir stood…

Dead Marshes panorama

Kepler Mire served as the Dead Marshes in the distance shots. We had excellent timing with the weather I loved seeing the fog rising above the marsh. Dead Marshes Jenna in Lothlorien This bit of forest is where the Fellowship first entered Lothlorien and were caught by Haldir and company in The Fellowship of the Ring.

Fangorn mountains

This tour comprised of many small locations that you think wouldn’t be recognizable from the film, but they somehow are…these mountains are great example of that. They appear a few times in distant shots of Fangorn.Fake tree at Beorn's house

See the odd tree out? That’s a fake tree that was erected to stand by Beorn’s house in The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug. I would have loved to get a bit closer to it!

Although I didn’t come away with as many great shots as I would have liked (I had some camera issues ;_;), that made me more grateful for the CD the tour company provided with numerous shots of the locations throughout the seasons. Which of these locations would you like to visit the most?

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  • Savannah Aleksic

    Its so awesome you were able to see these places like this! I haven’t seen the lord of the rings movies (nor have I read the books, except the hobbit), but I still would love to do something like this. It’s also good exercise, I would guess.

    • I heard from some of the tour guides that something like 50% of people who take their tours haven’t seen the movies/aren’t big fans. It’s a good way to see the scenery anyhow 🙂

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