We are nearing the end of a long anticipated (and much needed) holiday. Amongst the main goal to relax and be refreshed (along with a wee bit of renovating) was the plan to go on a road trip as a family for a few days away.
On the top of our list of things to do was to visit Hobbiton in Matamata. With a short time frame and budget, we decided to add in a few extra places to visit along the way that wouldn't break the bank for a family of 6.
From there we went to Motat. The last time we were there was around 14 years ago when our oldest was 2 years old! Time goes by so fast...
Symon was in plane heaven there as well...
After that we made our way down to Hamilton ready for our Hobbiton tour the next morning (you can tell the kids were pretty excited).
The day started out overcast and later light rain started, but thankfully as we started out on our trip the sky cleared and the weather was absolutely beautiful!!!
Crazy thing is that our good friends (the Boucher clan) had unknowingly also planned a road trip down to Hobbiton on the same day and time as us! We made sure we were on the same tour and had an awesome time.
Prepare for Hobbiton photo overload (don't worry, I won't post all of the hundreds of photos I took)...
We loved all the little details around each Hobbit Hole. With up to 3,000 tourists visiting a day, everything is kept looking so nice.
The tour ended with drinks at the Green Dragon...
Was it worth it? Absolutely! I didn't know what to expect at first, but was so impressed. Awesome tour guide, great experience and I came away so proud to be a Kiwi!
During our trip we also made time to check out the beautiful Hamilton Gardens. Sadly we couldn't explore the whole area due to tired children and a scraped knee (see child running in the pic below) but the gardens we did see were lovely.
The next day we explored Hamilton Zoo before heading home. The bird below seemed to love Symon - it danced away and squawked at him for ages!
As usual, I think our family kept others at the Zoo more entertained than the animals did (just kidding... sort of).
A quick stop at Mount Victoria in Auckland on the way back to Whangarei brought back a few memories from this visit a while ago.
So we went there and came back again (see what I did there all you Hobbit fans) and had the best time. So proud of our children who were so well behaved with all the travelling and walking - if you are a parent of young children have hope... those years of children fighting in the back seat does pass!
So good to get away and explore our precious country of New Zealand!
For other road trip posts, go here.