Even if you've never seen a single movie from The Lord of the Rings or The Hobbit trilogies, it's safe to say you're probably familiar with the jaw-dropping New Zealand sets. They're famous for being super detailed and life-like, but the building process was no easy feat.
For starters, , the director behind the movies, used an aerial search to cover the vast land when scouting locations — which is how he found Alexander Farm, the set for . It was pretty much love at first sight. In fact, the set director, Alan Lee, noted that the rolling hills looked as if hobbits had already begun excavations for their famous buried homes.
After finding their dream location, the crew went to work creating 37 hobbit holes, a mill, and a double arched bridge in 1999 so they could let the set be for a year and become one with nature — a.k.a. so weeds would grow between the cracks. The set was also used years later in 2011 for The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey. However, today it's simply a tour for fans of the series.
A few things you'll see if you choose to visit? The "Bag End" hobbit hole, which is home to Bilbo Baggins and Frodo Baggins in the movies:
And many more adorable abodes like this quaint one with a yellow door and picket fence:
The only thing that would make this tour even better is if visitors could rent out the homes afterwards for the night (hint, hint, Airbnb).