Growing up, what were your favourite stories to read – or at least, movie adaptations to watch? The stories that had a bit of charm and whimsy to them, of course. You know what we’re talking about – J. R. R. Tolkien’s “The Lord of the Rings” series and C. S. Lewis’ “The Chronicles of Narnia” novels.

Both of these had us staying up late well past our bedtimes, hiding under the covers with a flashlight to read just one more chapter. The cool thing about these stories is that they’ve become huge movie productions as well. So both have a fairly decent somewhat cult following. When you think about it, it’s pretty cool that we were able to carry that magic with us from childhood into adulthood enough that we still get excited when a new movie comes out.

The other cool thing about these productions is that they were filmed right here in New Zealand. And New Zealand is a perfectly driveable country of which you and your friends can embark on a road trip (read: adventure) as great as your favourite fictional characters. Just look at all these cool places you can explore around the country!

“Lord of the Rings” locations

Matamata aka Hobbiton

This is perhaps one of the most famous filming sites in New Zealand, and it’s a real place, so visited by tourists every day. The hobbit homes really are built right into the hills with the little wooden doors and everything. It’s a must see!

Mt Ngauruhoe aka Mt Doom

This mountain might look a little different than it does in the movie. The producers added in their own special effects to make it look spooky, but you can visit the same mountain that Frodo and Sam climbed up by walking the Tongariro Crossing.

Putangirua Pinnacles aka the Dimholt Road

Remember when Legolas, Aragorn and Gimli first met the Army of the Undead? Of course, who could forget that epic scene and even more epic scenery. This unique landscape looks like it could have been a product of CGI effects, but it isn’t! You’ll have to see it for yourself to believe it.

Hobbiton is a real place!
Hobbiton is a real place!

“The Chronicles of Narnia” locations 

Elephant Rocks aka Aslan’s Camp

This is the location where Aslan readied his troops and the Pevensie children for battle against the White Witch. It’s a pretty magical site itself. Millions of years ago, the area used to be underwater so when marine life passed away, their bodies sank into the sand. Now that it is above ground, you can see some of these unique fossils.

Cathedral Cove aka Cair Parvael ruins 

This is the site where the Pevensie children returned to Narnia after they left for the first time. The beautiful beach scene was so breathtaking in the movie, with its crystal clear water and majestic rocky outcrops, that even the actors thought audiences would think it was fake.

Flock Hill aka The Great Battle 

If you want to see where the battle came to head as the Pevensies clashed steel with their enemies then you’ll have to head to this dramatic valley. Stay there long enough and you just might be able to hear Aslan’s mighty roar!

As you can see, you’re going to be doing a lot of travelling, so make sure you have a reliable car to transport you around! Give us a call and set up your ride here at East Coast Car Rentals and we’ll make sure you’ll have a smoother journey than most of the adventures of your favourite characters.