New Zealand: The Lord of the RingsPutangirua Pinnacles: The Dimholt Road
Two hours east of Peter Jackson's home town of Wellington, the Putangirua Pinnacles provided the perfect backdrop for the Dimholt Road (aka The Paths to the Dead), featuring in The Lord of the Rings - The Return of the King.
It's definitely one of the more challenging LOTR locations to get to, as it involves a bit of a scramble to reach the exact filming spots. From the top end of the car park, walk along the streambed for about 10 minutes. From here, you can either turn left onto the steep bush track up to the lookout, or continue along the creek.
At the point where the two tracks join up again, continue upriver for another few minutes before heading up the side valley on your left. This part might be a bit more challenging, in particular after a rainy period or during the wetter winter months as the gravel in the river bed is very soft. By the way, as you will have to ford the creek a few times during the first leg of the valley track, you might want to set out in drier conditions anyway.
Filming took place at the upper, narrow part of the valley.
It was an exhilarating experience to hike up this far but Stefan's boots had to pay the price.
Aragorn, Gimli and Legolas have left Rohan's army at Dunharrow and travel the Dimholt Road on horseback in search of the Dark Door, which signifies the entrance to the Paths of the Dead.
For more information about the Pinnacles track, have a look at the specific track description provided by the Department of Conversation. It takes between 2 and 4 hours return to hike to the filming location, depending on your fitness and whether you include the track up to the viewing platform.