Thursday, 19 November 2015

Rotorua Day 1 and HOBBITON!!

So we arrived in Rotorua around 8.30am where half the bus who were going onto the next destination this afternoon got off to do Hobbiton. Then there were around 9 of us staying on in Rotorua for a few days, so we were doing Hobbiton in the afternoon.

So we went to our backpackers to check in, the first hostel with FREE WiFi!! It also has a hot tub hehe! Then we went for a morning walk around the Sulphur lake which then turns into a normal lake. Rotorua means 'two lakes'. To tell you it smells bad in Rotorua is an understatement. Rotten egg everywhere! Rotorua is a town built on geothermal active ground. So lots and lots of Sulphur pools and lakes. Some you can even go into for free. It's pretty cool, feels like you are on Mars sometimes!

We then headed to Pak'n'save our favourite supermarket as we were cooking bolognaise for 9 of us tonight so needed some supplies then we headed back for lunch and then down to the Hobbiton store to be collected for our tour around the land made famous by Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit!!

We were all pretty excited. It takes 1.5hrs to drive to Mata Mata from Rotorua which is where the Robinson's farm is where Peter Jackson scouted the farm he wanted to use in the films. He supposedly bought the land from the farmers and built Hobbiton using non permanent products, strictly for filming use. It took ages to construct - they even used the new Zealand army to help. And imported fake leaves for the party tree from Taiwan and individually strung the leaves on...! Then for the hobbit it took two years of reconstruction out of more permanent materials...for only 12 days of filming!! But now I guess they rake the money in.

The farm of the Robinson's is over 1800 acres of land...its HUGE! But the Hobbiton set is pretty small but still takes a good hour or two to walk around!

When we arrived we met our guide and she started our tour through the shire! It was like being home! When I told the guide my height she said I could have been an extra as a hobbit...yea yea I know! Pierrick took great pleasure in picturing by the tiny hobbit homes because I fit them so well. He was also super excited as this was a big bucket list tick for him as he is a major fan of the movies. We even got to have a pint of cider brewed especially for Hobbiton in the Green Dragon hobbit pub! We also had a cookie and a muffin.

We took lots and lots of pictures and then when the tour ended, headed back to Rotorua on the bus.

We all decided to start cooking around 8pm, which was an experience in itself, 9 of us in a tiny kitchen trying to cook a meal for 9 people using tiny pots and pans, having to split everything up and the cooker not working very well - it was a state! But 2 hours later we had cooked our kilo of mincw, kilo of bacon, 4 bags of pasta, plenty of vegetables and salad and were having a lovely meal. A few people were headed off on the east bro tour tomorrow but would be back Monday so before going to bed we said goodbye. We'd be doing the white water rafting together on Tuesday morning so would see them again before we really part ways. Me and Pierrick have decided to hop off the bus for a week in Rotorua and then head to Coromandel where we hope to get some work for accommodation to save a little money. Then we will come back and do the East Broadway section of the Stray bus before hopping back on the bus down to Lake Taupo via Lake Aniwhenua and Whukahuru (pronounced fuckahoro).

Today was a chill day as after the hectic first week of the bus we wanted a lie in and to catch up on my blog, uploading photos etc...its what I call a travel Admin day. We also booked our two activities in Rotorua; Wai-o-tapu thermal day and white water rafting down the river and a 7 metre waterfall (im scared!) For Monday and Tuesday. Other than that we are just going to check out all the free things to do in town. And maybe do a $2 naked Zorb - well its cheap so we'll take what we can right? A naked Zorb is cheaper than a $58 Zorb right?! Lol

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