If you came to New Zealand to fulfil a dream of discovering Middle-Earth, this is the Lord of the Rings tour for you. See the most iconic filming locations on this must do South Island, New Zealand guided holiday. Your private guide will meet your group at the airport and take you on an insider’s tour of Middle-Earth!
Offering New Zealand’s top escorted tour operators and highly experienced tour guides, we cater for groups of 1-20 people. No date or itinerary restrictions, your Lord of the Rings guided tour can be fully customised.
10 Day Mountains of Middle Earth Guided Tour Itinerary
Day 1 Arrive Christchurch
Your fantastic guided holiday begins in Christchurch, New Zealand’s “Garden City.” With a thriving restaurant scene, a string of beautiful parks, and a historic town centre, Christchurch is an excellent holiday destination.
Explore Christchurch with your guide, visiting the botanic gardens, the Christchurch Cathedral, the RE:Start Container Mall, and the Canterbury Museum.
Stay 2 nights in Christchurch.
Day 2 Edoras Tour
Take a journey into Middle-earth with a full day tour from Christchurch to a key Lord of the Rings filming location. Edoras, also known as Mt Sunday, is set within the remote Mt Potts high country station. Learn how the set was built on top of sheer cliffs, see exclusive photos from the film’s construction, and enjoy awe-inspiring 360-degree views from the summit.
Day 3 Mount Cook Village + Tasman Glacier
Travel time Christchurch to Mt Cook Village – 4 hours
Your scenic journey through the Mackenzie Basin begins today as you cross over Burkes Pass. As the Southern Alps loom before you, there will be photo opportunities around every corner.
Continue past Lake Pukaki on your way to Mt Cook Village, nestled at the foot of New Zealand’s highest mountain. Your guide will take you to a viewpoint over Tasman Glacier, lying at the base of the spectacular Tasman Valley.
In the evening, visit the Sir Edmund Hillary Alpine Centre to view the displays and watch any of a wide offering of films and planetarium shows on New Zealand.
Stay 1 night in Mt Cook Village.
Day 4 Queenstown – The Adventure Capital of New Zealand!
Travel time Mt Cook Village to Queenstown – 3 hours
Continue south to Queenstown, the adventure capital of New Zealand. Along the way, your guide will take you to sample the fresh fruit from the orchards of Cromwell. You also have the option to visit several top wineries with your guide on the drive through the Kawarau Gorge.
Explore Queenstown independently in the evening, or add on a lake cruise and high country farm dinner with the TSS Earnslaw to make the most of your holiday.
Stay 2 nights in Queenstown.
Day 5 Dart River Jet Boat Safari + Isengard
Explore the Lord of the Rings locations around Queenstown with your guide today on an excursion to the stunning Glenorchy region, nestled at the head of Lake Wakatipu.
From there, join a jet boat safari which continues past Glenorchy up the Dart River, passing into the Paradise Valley (easily recognisable as Isengard). Stop for a nature walk through the forest used as Lothlorien, and marvel at the snow-capped mountain peaks and stunning turquoise river.
Afterwards, relax and explore Glenorchy with your guide. You have the option to enjoy a forest walk, visit further filming locations (including the Ithilien Camp, the location of the Battle of Amon Hen, and the setting for Beorn’s house from The Hobbit), or take a scenic drive to Kinloch Lodge for a coffee or lunch overlooking the wild reaches of Lake Wakatipu.
Day 6 Lord of the Rings Heli Tour
Travel time Queenstown to Te Anau – 2.5 hours
Your scenic tour will continue as you make your way past Lake Wakatipu on your way to Te Anau, the gateway to Fiordland National Park.
In the afternoon, experience a spectacular Lord of the Rings helicopter flight over Fiordland!
Stay 2 nights in Te Anau.
Day 7 Milford Sound Cruise
Embark on a fantastic journey along the Milford Highway today to New Zealand’s most iconic fiord – Milford Sound. Travel with a small tour group on this extended day trip to Milford Sound, stopping along the way for countless scenic photo opportunities and short walks plus a delicious morning tea. At Milford Sound, enjoy a scenic nature cruise that takes you up close to the majesty of the fiord – you might even spot keas, seals, dolphins, or the rare Fiordland Crested Penguin!
Day 8 Wanaka
Travel time Te Anau to Wanaka – 3.5 hours
Return past Lake Wakatipu to Queenstown, where you will stop for lunch before visiting the quaint historic mining settlement of Arrowtown. Time permitting, your guide will show you the filming locations for the Argonath, the Misty Mountains, and the Ford of Bruinen.
Afterwards, enjoy the scenic drive over the Crown Range to Wanaka. Your guide will stop along the way for photos at fantastic viewing points.
Explore the alpine town of Wanaka in the afternoon – your guide could take you to Puzzling World or Rippon Winery, or you could simply relax on the lakefront and do a bit of boutique shopping.
Stay 1 night in Wanaka.
Day 9 Franz Josef + Fox Glacier
Travel time Wanaka to Franz Josef – 4 hours
After the Milford Highway, the Haast Pass Highway is one of the most scenic alpine routes in New Zealand. Explore the pass with your guide, stopping to view cascading waterfalls, broad alpine meadows, craggy snowcapped mountains, and the turquoise depths of the Blue Pools.
Continuing along the West Coast, your guide will take you to the base of Fox Glacier, where you have the option to enjoy a 1-hour return walk to a viewing point over the mighty glacier.
In the evening, you have the option to add on a helicopter flight over Franz Josef Glacier with a snow landing.
Stay 1 night in Franz Josef.
Day 10 TranzAlpine Train Journey
Travel time Franz Josef to Greymouth – 2.5 hours
Train travel time Greymouth to Christchurch – 4.5 hours
Leave the rugged West Coast behind today as you board the TranzAlpine Train for a fantastic journey through Arthurs Pass. Travel past the soaring peaks and braided rivers of the Southern Alps, through the gorges of the Waimakariri River, and past the rolling Canterbury Plains.
Your guide will meet you at the train station and bring you to your accommodation.
Stay 1 night in Christchurch.
Day 11 Depart Christchurch
Your guide will deliver you to Christchurch Airport for your departing flight.
- Visiting all of the top Lord of the Rings destinations, including:
- The Misty Mountains
- Helms Deep
- Pelennor Fields
- The Argonath
- The River Anduin
- Visiting the remote and beautiful Mt Potts high country station on a tour to Edoras – see the Misty Mountains and the backdrop for Helm’s Deep along the way.
- Dining in style in the backcountry with a champagne picnic lunch!
- Driving through the Mackenzie Basin, with countless photo opportunities along the way – see the craggy, snow-capped Mt Cook (New Zealand’s highest mountain), drive past two stunning turquoise lakes, and witness the grandeur of the Southern Alps.
- Viewing the spectacular Tasman Glacier.
- Learning the incredible stories of New Zealand at the Sir Edmund Hillary Alpine Centre planetarium and theatre.
- Staying in Queenstown, the vibrant adventure capital of New Zealand.
- Venturing into paradise on the Dart River Jet Wilderness Safari, and marvelling at the incredible filming locations of Isengard and Lothlorien.
- Exploring the quaint historic mining settlement of Arrowtown.
- Flying over the breathtaking Fiordland mountains on an unforgettable Lord of the Rings helicopter tour.
- Journeying down the incredible Milford Highway and experiencing the grandeur of Milford Sound on an unforgettable nature cruise.
- Driving over the lofty Crown Range and stopping for sweeping views of the valley below.
- Travelling through Haast Pass, past hanging glaciers and pounding waterfalls and turquoise rivers.
- Visiting the base of the towering Fox Glacier.
- Riding the TranzAlpine Train through the spectacular Arthurs Pass.
Your privately guided tour includes:
- All transportation within New Zealand – you will be collected at the arrivals hall of Christchurch Airport and dropped off at the departures hall of Christchurch Airport
- Excellent 4-star accommodation
- Private tour guide
- Sightseeing and Photo Stops En Route
- 4WD Tour to Edoras including Champagne Picnic Lunch
- Sir Edmund Hillary Alpine Centre Explorers Pass
- Dart River Wilderness Jet Safari
- Lord of the Rings Scenic Helicopter Flight Te Anau
- Milford Sound Fiordland Extraordinaire Tour
- TranzAlpine Train Journey
** Your privately guided tour does NOT include flights, food (except where included in activities) or travel insurance. **
As guide prices are split between travellers, the pricing will vary depending on the number of travellers on your tour.
1 Traveller: NZD$18,449
2 Travellers: NZD$10,199 per adult | NZD$9799 per child
3 Travellers: NZD$7849 per adult | NZD$7399 per child
4 Travellers: NZD$6699 per adult | NZD$6249 per child
5 Travellers: NZD$5999 per adult | NZD$5549 per child
6 Travellers: NZD$5499 per adult | NZD$5049 per child
7 Travellers: NZD$5049 per adult | NZD$4699 per child
8 Travellers: NZD$4949 per adult | NZD$4449 per child
9 Travellers: NZD$4899 per adult | NZD$4449 per child
10 Travellers: NZD$4749 per adult | NZD$4299 per child
11 + Travellers: Please enquire for your custom quote