Belfast Telegraph

Tourists on trail of Hobbit films

The recently released final part of The Hobbit film trilogy is set to spark another season of "set-jetting" for British tourists keen to holiday in areas where movies are shot.

Following the success of the Lords of the Rings films, The Hobbit movies have proved a boon to tourism in New Zealand where all the films were made.

For the period July 2013 to June 2014, a total of 13% of all international holiday visitors to New Zealand said The Hobbit films were a factor in their choice of destination.

Tourism New Zealand chief executive Kevin Bowler said: "We have seen significant growth driven by beautiful backdrops and key aspects of New Zealand in the movies.

"While it is clear that improving economies and increased airline capacity are supporting tourism growth, the Hobbit factor has raised the profile of New Zealand."

The Hobbit is the latest in a series of blockbuster movies that have boosted tourism. Other films that led to increases in British and other international visitors have included Out Of Africa and A Passage To India.

In the UK, tourism chiefs have used film and TV series' locations as a lure for international tourists, with the Harry Potter films to the fore in this respect.

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