Sunday, 20 March 2016


I have not posted for a while. I went to Taiwan, Australia and (mainly) New Zealand for 6 weeks over the winter. With preparing to go, being away then back to cold wet UK I have not been doing much (January and February and never productive months for me anyway!) and I have been ill of the last month which has delayed me getting back into things.

I have been concentrating on finishing off a pile of things on my workbench - as I may have mentioned in earlier posts I do suffer somewhat from getting distracted by the latest thing and so end up with lots on the go. After a break I always try to finish all that off before starting anything new and so a lot gets finished in a fairly short time and I will be doing quite a few posts in the next week or so.

By way of a first post in the new year a few photos from New Zealand. An absolutely spectacular place to visit even if you aren't a Lord of the Rings fan - so doubly great for me!

A few shorts of Hobbiton (you get a bear in the Green Dragon Inn as part of the tool - specially brewed for the film, although the actors had it watered down heavily during filming!). A definite place to go if you are a fan or have kids.

The tree above Bag End was off for refurbishing. Apparently Peter Jackson wanted a particular look and so they built a tree - the leaves had faded by the time they came back to film the Hobbit and so he insisted that the leaves all got repainted by had - I forget how many hundred of thousand there were, but it only ended up in a long distant shot for a matter of seconds.

Weta Studios was an interesting visit, they don't allow photos inside but here are some trolls outside:

A very long drive on a crushed rock road gets you to where Edoras was filmed. Worth the trip as the scenery is spectacular with or without the connection to LOTR.

The national park with several volcanoes which includes the one used for Mount Doom is also worth a visit. We were luck enough for great weather and tool a flight over the volcanoes.

Other than Lord of the Rings, the scenery is just generally spectacular and the food is good as is the beer and wine and great value too. I just wish it was not so far away!

Some really vivid colours in a thermal area:

Normal service will be resumed shortly...


  1. Looks like a cracking break Steve.. its on my list to visit

  2. if you only go to one more place I would recommend New Zealand but don't wait too long as there is a lot fo driving if you really want to see it. I did 4,500km in 18 days