A year ago, I brought in a full-time assistant, Jen Troy, to help out in the studio. She's been amazing: There are a bajillion tasks she's been helpful with, both in the production of the strips, shipping your Sheldon orders to you, keeping up the sites, and more. But she's mainly been my Jill-Of-All-Trades on the documentary film: If there was a task on the film that needed help, Jen was there to do it.
Anyway! When Jen took a vacation to New Zealand a while back, and mentioned she was going to the location where they filmed Hobbiton... I asked her to write up a travelogue for you guys! Because let's be honest: How many of us are going to get to go to Hobbiton? Knowing Jen as I do, her write-up is pretty awesome: She's genuinely geeking out. So without further ado, here's Jen....
Welcome to... Hobbiton! I recently visited New Zealand and took the Hobbiton tour. It was really fun and I couldn't help but geek out! Here is the sign outside the Shire's Rest Cafe where I joined the tour.
The group boarded a vintage bus that drove us onto the farm and to the Hobbiton film set. Once off the bus, our guide brought us into the Shire. Guys, I was in the SHIRE. Here is a photo of just one of the many Hobbit holes I got to see. I think our guide said there was thirty-three holes in all, but don't quote me on that. The props and production design was amazing to look at.
We were given a chance to see them up close and farther away. It was so lovely to see the Hobbit holes tucked away into the greenery. Yeah, it was TOTALLY that green.
We made our way up the main hill towards... Bilbo and Frodo's home! Do you recognize that tree? Just below it is the door to the Baggins' home.
This is as close as I could get, but they left the front door open so we could see the paneling inside. I was told that this is the only Hobbit hole that has some interior walls.
Then we made our way down towards the rest of Hobbiton and the Green Dragon Inn. Here is the view from the top. I know... it's SO pretty.
We walked passed the Mill and over the bridge...
To the Green Dragon Inn! As of December 2012, it is now a fully functioning pub. With our tour, we each got a complimentary drink. The cider was delicious.
It's pretty dark inside. Check out the detail.
They even gave us our drinks in appropriate mugs! Apparently a potter in the area makes them, but he can only make twenty a day so please don't swipe them.
Here are a few Hobbit holes next to each other for your delight. Many homes had their laundry drying on the line.
Finally on our way out and back to the bus, I passed this sign. I didn't want to leave!