Day 25 & 26: May 13 & 14 – Rotorua to Matamata

Daily Distance = 70.97km, Trip Total = 747.52km, Today’s Climb = 429m

Today will be the first day of cycling with all of my gear, so I made sure I was on the road before 9am to give myself lots of day light hours.

Fortunately I had a strong tail wind and for the first 1/2hr I barely had to pedal as I made my way through the town and outskirts of Rotorua.  The next hour and a bit did involve some pedalling as pretty much all of my day’s climbing was occurring in a gradual but steady incline over 10km’s.  I definitely felt the weight of the extra gear on my bike during this stretch, but it was a gradual enough of a climb that I was able to stay on the bike.  The tailwind may have helped as well :)


Some of the views along the way

Some of the views along the way


After the gradual climb, then I had a plateau for a while followed by a lengthy gradual downhill stretch.  The rest of the ride finished in a blur and I was in Matamata shortly after 1pm!

Heading down the descent

Heading down the descent – there was an awesome view in the distance

It's always a joy to see the name of the town of the day's destination on the road signs :)

It’s always a joy to see the name of the town of the day’s destination on the road signs :)


I was booked for a Hobbiton tour the following day, but tried to switch the tour to today given I was in town so early.  Unfortunately they were already booked up.  So I went to my accommodations for the night, hauled my bike and gear up a flight of stairs, got cleaned up and took a walk around the town.


The next day I headed to the I-site to go on my Hobbiton tour (for those who are not Lord of the Rings or The Hobbit fans, this is the movie set of The Shire – the hometown of the hobbits from these films).

The I-site in Matamata takes on the character of Hobbiton!

The I-site in Matamata takes on the character of Hobbiton!



The drive to Hobbiton was quite scenic with lots of rolling green hills.

The drive to Hobbiton

The drive to Hobbiton



We had a 2hr walking tour of the Hobbiton movie set and walked around the village.  Along the way we were told stories about some of the things that happened on set, some of the facts like how many people where involved, some of the lengths they took to pay attention to detail on the set, etc.

Hobbiton - can you spot the 40 hobbit holes embedded in the hill?

Hobbiton – can you spot the 40 hobbit holes embedded in the hill?

A hobbit hole

A hobbit hole

Our guide Alex

Our guide Alex




The largest hobbit hole (Bag End).  The tree above is fake.  The trunk and branches are steel and the leaves are silk

The largest hobbit hole (Bag End). The tree above is actually fake – the trunk and branches are made of metal, I believe the leaves are silk


The tour was completed with a cider at the pub on set



The rest of the day was pretty mellow.  I picked up some groceries, did some research on upcoming parts of the trip and watched some Netflix :)


  1. Mike Taylor says:

    I’m glad you dodged the rain on this leg of the trip. It only makes your tour a little more tedious. Do you have to lug your bike up to your accommodations every night?
    Your second photo above is a good example of the phrase, “New Zealand, the land of the long clouds.”
    Ride on Tami and be safe!

    • admin says:

      I’m happy every day that I can avoid the rain! Especially at these temperatures. It’s already a bit uncomfortable to stop for any more than 10-15min on dry days (the body cools down too much). When it rains, stopping is almost not an option.
      As for lugging the bike – I’m more comfortable with it being in the room, so if they allow it in the room I bring it with me.
      Good eye on the clouds! I guess I didn’t really realize! I’m looking at the roads, hills and trees too much! lol!

  2. Chuck says:

    Wow, Tami, this must have been some kind of a ride. You sure did make good time.

  3. Chuck says:

    I tried to put this comment on your, Nelson wine tour day?
    I couldn’t get it to work. So, we did want to mention thank-you for the wonderful late harvest wine for supper, in Nelson!

  4. Jane says:

    wow…. what a trip…!!!! thanks for the updates… its awesome. quite breathtaking views!! take care…

    • admin says:

      Definitely some nice scenery!! And as Mike mentioned it really does change every day. Even within cycling-day distances! Thanks for following along and the well wishes :)

  5. Patti says:

    Thanks for the updates. Looks beautiful. Enjoy!!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *