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Tauranga - Hobbiton - No Tours Available


Host Jazzbeau
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We will be in Tauranga in 2020 and our ship (Le Laperouse) is the only one in port so none of the tour companies are offering tours to Hobbiton.  We seem to have two options:  (a) rent a car, or (b) hire a taxi.

 

(a)  What is the drive like from Tauranga to Hobbiton?  Google Maps makes it look easy, but you do have to cross the Kaimai summit.

(b)  Which taxi companies are recommended?  [Even if we rent a car, we will need a taxi to get to the Hertz office on Elizabeth St and then back from the Hertz airport location to the ship.]

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50 minutes ago, Host Jazzbeau said:

We will be in Tauranga in 2020 and our ship (Le Laperouse) is the only one in port so none of the tour companies are offering tours to Hobbiton.  We seem to have two options:  (a) rent a car, or (b) hire a taxi.

 

(a)  What is the drive like from Tauranga to Hobbiton?  Google Maps makes it look easy, but you do have to cross the Kaimai summit.

(b)  Which taxi companies are recommended?  [Even if we rent a car, we will need a taxi to get to the Hertz office on Elizabeth St and then back from the Hertz airport location to the ship.]

Did you try arrow tours?

 I m sure roger could organise something.

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I have contacted Arrow (Roger), Shore Trips and Tours, and Zealandier and all say that – because Le Laperouse only holds 184 passengers, and many of them are on a Tauck tour and many others are French-speaking – they will NOT be offering any tours.

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45 minutes ago, Host Jazzbeau said:

I have contacted Arrow (Roger), Shore Trips and Tours, and Zealandier and all say that – because Le Laperouse only holds 184 passengers, and many of them are on a Tauck tour and many others are French-speaking – they will NOT be offering any tours.

I thought he might offer something outside of the box ,a car and a driver?

looks like its a hire car, the roads are good in NZ .

 I haven’t hired a car in Tauranga but friends have .Theirs a couple just near the wharf.

Nz and right price car rental.

 I vaguely remember someone saying they delivered it to the Wharf parking area or picked them up.

 

 

Edited by Chiliburn
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That's a great comment by banditoo (CJays Tour Group).  The woman who runs CJays has been very responsive to me when inquiring about a tour to the thermal area around Rotorua, so perhaps she can help you. I believe she does offer a tour to Hobbiton, though perhaps as Hobbiton and somewhere else.  I think it will be a tour in a car but she will offer the tour to others, not just you, but no big coach or anything like that.  

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We had two fantastic days with CJays Tours in December 2018, as our ship spent overnight in Tauranga.  First day we visited Waitomo Glowworm Caves and Hobbiton.  Second day we did Redwood Forest Tree Walk, Blue and Green Lakes, and Te Puia in Rotorua.  I highly recommend them.

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  • 2 weeks later...
  • 1 month later...
On 8/21/2019 at 5:21 PM, BrissieB said:

We're using CJs in November for Hobbiton/Rotorua.  They have been quick and professional when responding to emails.  I opted for them based on positive recommendations from Cruise Critic members.

Looking forward to hearing about this excursion. We will be in Tauranga on Le Laperouse in January and are just finalising our shore excursions. We have been wondering about doing this one. Keen to hear.

Cheers!

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  • 4 weeks later...
19 minutes ago, the_travel_locks said:

That's great to hear BrissieB - we have booked the same tour with CJays  for when we arrive at Tauranga in January - really looking forward to it. Cheers

We enjoyed Hobbiton.  The quicker you can get off the ship and out of the car park the earlier you will be able to take the tour.  We got a little wet in Rotorua ($3 disposable rain poncho for the win).  The Maori cultural centre was worth the visit.  We would have had enough time to take a quick walk up Mt Manganui on the return but the timing of the rain meant that was not an attractive option.  Highly enjoyable visit.

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33 minutes ago, BrissieB said:

We enjoyed Hobbiton.  The quicker you can get off the ship and out of the car park the earlier you will be able to take the tour.  We got a little wet in Rotorua ($3 disposable rain poncho for the win).  The Maori cultural centre was worth the visit.  We would have had enough time to take a quick walk up Mt Manganui on the return but the timing of the rain meant that was not an attractive option.  Highly enjoyable visit.

 

Thanks for this review.  I'm getting concerned about my booking with CJays for March.  I'm on a very small ship and it's the only one in port that day – no other vendor would take our reservation.  CJays immediately sent an email that the tour was booked, but it said "We will send you a confirmation invoice for you to retain and present when we meet you." – that was back in August.  A month ago I email them again to say we were looking forward but hadn't received the confirmation yet.  When did you get your confirmation?

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3 minutes ago, Host Jazzbeau said:

 

Thanks for this review.  I'm getting concerned about my booking with CJays for March.  I'm on a very small ship and it's the only one in port that day – no other vendor would take our reservation.  CJays immediately sent an email that the tour was booked, but it said "We will send you a confirmation invoice for you to retain and present when we meet you." – that was back in August.  A month ago I email them again to say we were looking forward but hadn't received the confirmation yet.  When did you get your confirmation?

I emailed them originally in February to ask some questions about various tours.  I emailed them again in May/June to confirm the tour we wanted and the number of passengers and they said we will send you an invoice closer to the tour.  I didn't hear from them again.  About a week or two out from our cruise I sent them an email to make sure they had our booking and to finalise payment details.  They sent me an invoice within a couple of hours (timezone differences) and we paid it by paypal.  I found them really good with communication.  If you are concerned try again, your last communication might have been missed.  If I remember correctly they have been running tours for about 20 years.

 

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1 minute ago, BrissieB said:

I emailed them originally in February to ask some questions about various tours.  I emailed them again in May/June to confirm the tour we wanted and the number of passengers and they said we will send you an invoice closer to the tour.  I didn't hear from them again.  About a week or two out from our cruise I sent them an email to make sure they had our booking and to finalise payment details.  They sent me an invoice within a couple of hours (timezone differences) and we paid it by paypal.  I found them really good with communication.  If you are concerned try again, your last communication might have been missed.  If I remember correctly they have been running tours for about 20 years.

 

 

25 minutes ago, Host Jazzbeau said:

 

Thanks for this review.  I'm getting concerned about my booking with CJays for March.  I'm on a very small ship and it's the only one in port that day – no other vendor would take our reservation.  CJays immediately sent an email that the tour was booked, but it said "We will send you a confirmation invoice for you to retain and present when we meet you." – that was back in August.  A month ago I email them again to say we were looking forward but hadn't received the confirmation yet.  When did you get your confirmation?

Hi Jazzbeau, we are arriving on Le Laperouse on 23rd Jan and also found it difficult to find a tour operating but CJays took our booking OK when I emailed. I asked about payment and they advised us to just pay them when we meet at the pier. I have not received an invoice , but I did ring them a couple of weeks back to check and was assured tour was booked in - for just the 2 of us. I have also just now sent them a private Facebook message,  just making doubly sure - I do like to have something tangible like a written confirmation/invoice or deposit receipt ...shall keep you posted. Cheers ,  Jenni and Ken (ps we met you on the Viking Cruise of the British Isles last year)

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9 hours ago, the_travel_locks said:

 

Hi Jazzbeau, we are arriving on Le Laperouse on 23rd Jan and also found it difficult to find a tour operating but CJays took our booking OK when I emailed. I asked about payment and they advised us to just pay them when we meet at the pier. I have not received an invoice , but I did ring them a couple of weeks back to check and was assured tour was booked in - for just the 2 of us. I have also just now sent them a private Facebook message,  just making doubly sure - I do like to have something tangible like a written confirmation/invoice or deposit receipt ...shall keep you posted. Cheers ,  Jenni and Ken (ps we met you on the Viking Cruise of the British Isles last year)

 

Thanks, I'll be waiting for your report!  I guess at bottom I'm worried because I don't see how it pays them to run these tours for only 2 people at the group rate they charge.  But I reassure myself that if there is a problem we can surely find someone to take us, even if it will cost much more.  But CJays gets such great reviews that I would really prefer to go with them as planned.

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  • 1 month later...
On 12/9/2019 at 2:49 AM, Host Jazzbeau said:

 

Thanks, I'll be waiting for your report!  I guess at bottom I'm worried because I don't see how it pays them to run these tours for only 2 people at the group rate they charge.  But I reassure myself that if there is a problem we can surely find someone to take us, even if it will cost much more.  But CJays gets such great reviews that I would really prefer to go with them as planned.

Hi Jazzbeau, we are home now after our  New Zealand cruise on Le Laperouse  and can advise that our tour with CJays to Hobbiton  and Te Puia went ahead very smoothly. Clem from CJays was waiting at the Tauranga port gates as promised and took us to Hobbiton first and then later to Te Puia. There was time also to do a little driving around before being delivered back to the ship.  There was just my husband and I on the tour and it was in a comfortable minivan. Clem advised that his wife Judy sometimes does the tours and  she was booked for Le Laperouse's return to Tauranga a couple of days later, so they are a great little team to accommodate people on smaller ships looking for an alternative to the ship excursions on offer. Hobbiton was just amazing. Enjoy!

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Thanks @the_travel_locks – I finally got the invoice from Cjays this week and immediately sent the payment through PayPal.  It is really reassuring to have your report.  They are picking us up at the ship, taking us to Mass and breakfast, and then on to Hobbiton – that's how I knew it had to be a private tour.  It sounds like a terrific day.

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