Waiau River - River Anduin

Waiau River & Kepler Track
Manapouri, Southland
Parts of the Waiau River flowing out of Lake Te Anau were filmed for scenes of the River Anduin in the first of the Lord of the Rings movie trilogy, 'The fellowship of the ring,' 2001.
Digitally added stone carved figures at either side of the lake entrance enhanced the already spectacular setting for these scenes.

Despite the opposition of the New Zealand Geographic board, locals have casually renamed this location the Anduin Reach, in order to define for visitors the place where the filming took place.

Other rivers in other parts of New Zealand were used for filming other scenes on the fictional Anduin river.

The best way to view the river is by walking on part of the Kepler Track. Start at the Rainbow Reach carpark, signposted off the Te Anau - Manapouri Road. Cross the swing bridge over the Waiau and go left following the river. When the track leaves the river terraces, you can follow it through beech forest to the shores of Lake Manapouri (about 3 hours return) or wander back along the river.

There are several rivers named Waiau (means long flowing water) throughout New Zealand but this is the largest. Incidentally 'Anduin' the name of Tolkeins river also means long river.

“And Gandalf said: "This is your realm, and the heart of the greater realm that shall be. The Third Age of the world is ended, and the new age is begun; and it is your task to order its beginning and to preserve what must be preserved. For though much has been saved, much must now pass away; and the power of the Three Rings also is ended. And all the lands that you see, and those that lie round about them, shall be dwellings of Men. For the time comes of the Dominion of Men, and the Elder Kindred shall fade or depart.”
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Note: Location is approximate.

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  • Waiau River
    Waiau River
  • Waiau River Location
    Waiau River Location
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