Game of Thrones has become a cult phenomenon and has taken over television for years. Ever since the original books were released, the series has been gaining more and more fans until HBO decided to bring the books to the big screen. Now that there are seven seasons of Game of Thrones, there is a pretty hefty amount of places that the show was filmed. Most of these places were filmed in the same country as many of the places in the show look similar. These places include Northern Ireland for the northern parts of Westeros then Spain for the more southern parts of Westeros. All of these places are open to the public and tourism so you can visit these places and stand where the Game of Thrones actors stood.
If you do decide to visit these locations it is worth noting that not all the locations will look exactly like they do in the show because the show uses a lot of CGI. Many of the places may also be more light if you are visiting places that represent the northern parts of Westeros. These places are definitely worth the visit if you are a fan of the show or the books and you can even recreate some of the famous scenes from the show!
20 Castle Ward, Northern Ireland: Winterfell
Castle Ward located in Northern Ireland was used to film some of the most iconic scenes in the show. The castle was used to represent Winterfell, the home of the Starks. It was mostly used in season 1 when the character Robert Baratheon visits Winterfell and then later when the Starks were practicing with archery. The castle itself seems like it would represent Winterfell perfectly, however, in the end, the castle was only used to film a couple of scenes. If you visit the castle expecting to see Winterfell exactly how it is in the show you may be going home disappointed.
19 Alcázar, Seville, Spain: Palace Of Dorne
Alcázar is the place that represented the city of Dorne where House Martell resided in the show. More specifically, the city of Seville represented Dorne as a whole while Alcázar represented the water gardens of Dorne according to TravelAlerts.
The gardens of Dorne are one of the places that stand out the most in the show due to the color palette change from bleak colors to the very saturated colors presented in Dorne especially in the water gardens.
The palace found in Alcázar was built in 913 and has been kept in peak condition for thousands of years.
18 Bardenas Reales, Spain: The Dothraki Sea
The Dothraki Sea in the show may seem like it just took place in a desert with a few hills and rocks but it was actually filmed in the Bardenas Reales, Spain which has much more color than represented in the show. While you won't find the two giant horse statues fighting each other in real life, you will find some iconic scenes in Bardenas. The area was prominently used in Season 1 of the show as Daenerys Targaryen was finding her way back to Westeros, then again in season 6 when she was reunited with the Dothraki.
17 Castillo de Zafra, Guadalajara, Spain: The Tower Of Joy
The castle named Castillo de Zafra located in Guadalajara, Spain was possibly the most intriguing place in the show. This is due to the mysteries held within the castle through the flashbacks that Bran Stark was having. Throughout the seasons of Game of Thrones, this castle is featured a few times and each time it is seen more and more is revealed about a character. While the secret of the castle has already been revealed we won't spoil anything in case someone hasn't made it that far yet. The castle itself stands tall on a few rocks and is very isolated with large planes stretching around it.
16 Peñíscola, Castellón, Spain: Meereen And Bay Of Dragons
The city of Meereen is one of the first cities that Daenerys Targaryen visits and conquers on her journey to take back the iron throne. According to Spain.info "Peñíscola is one of the most popular tourist resorts in the province of Castellón". The city is beautiful as it sits right on the Mediterranean Sea, the views you can see from the castle and the areas around it are amazing. The castle located in Peñíscola was once used as a Templar fortress in 1307 when it was constructed. If you visit the city it will strangely feel empty and abandoned much opposite of its fictional counterpart in the show.
15 Trujillo Castle, Cáceres, Spain: Casterly Rock
Casterly Rock is a location in Game of Thrones that is heavily referenced in the show by House Lannister but it isn't actually shown for a few seasons. It is most prominently seen in one of the later seasons when the unsullied army, under the reign of Daenerys Targaryen, attempt to overthrow Casterly Rock and take the home from the Lannisters. Trujillo Castle in Almodóvar del Río plays the castle of Casterly Rock in the show and is a beautiful castle that is quite large. The castle itself has large fields that make perfect for battle in and out of the show.
14 Aït Benhaddou, Morocco: Yunkai
Taking things back to southern Spain, we take a look at another city that Daenerys Targaryen overtook on her journey throughout the show. The city of Yunkai is actually a city located in Morroco known as Aït Benhaddou.
Most of the city of Aït Benhaddou is made out of clay and has been affected recently due to different weather patterns degrading the walls of the city according to atlasobscura.com.
The Game of Thrones producers must have done their homework as the city of Aït Benhaddou acted as a slave city many years ago. In the show, the city of Yunkai is also a slave city where Daenerys Targaryen frees the slaves.
13 Essaouira, Morocco: Port City Of Astapor
Another city located in Morroco was used for filming during the show. The city of Essaouira was used early on in Daenerys Targaryen's journey to Westeros. The city was used to find the army of the unsullied in which she bought from the masters of the city. This is where Daenerys really starts to grow as a character and serves as an important part of the show and the Game of Thrones universe. A fun fact about the real city is the fact that the city served as a favorite vacation spot for many musicians including Jimi Hendrix.
12 Dubrovnik, Croatia: King's Landing
King's Landing is quite possibly the most important part of the Game of Thrones universe and the show. King's Landing serves as the center of Westeros and it is where the King sits upon the iron throne. It is where just about everyone in the show wants to be and rule. Not only does the real-life city of Dubrovnik, Croatia serve as an important part of the show but it is also a great tourist spot for people in real life. The city itself is filled with vibrant architecture and the bright blue sea surrounding it is breathtaking. Now that it is the closest we will get to King's Landing in real life the location has seen tourism increase tenfold.
11 Trsteno Arboretum, Trsteno, Croatia: Gardens Of King's Landing
The Gardens of King's Landing serve as a peaceful place for characters in King's Landing to walk and talk. The Gardens of King's Landing is a great place for advancing character relationships and plot points. The real-life place that is used to film the Gardens of King's Landing is known as Trsteno.
According to kingslandingdubrovnik.com Trsteno is only 15 miles away from Dubrovnik which is the place producers used to film King's Landing.
Similar to in the show Trsteno is a place full of vegetation and lush colors. The architecture here is very similar to what was shown in the show which gives a very medieval feel.
10 Verdala Palace, Malta: Pentos, Home Of Targeryans In Exile
The Verdala Palace located in Malta was used as the home of the remaining Targaryens and is where Daenerys Targaryen first started her journey. While we don't get to see the castle itself all that much, from what we do see the castle itself is nothing to cough at. Now that Daenerys Targaryen is storming Westeros and King's Landing it is unknown of what will become of her original home. As for the real-life palace, it is beautiful in its architecture and surrounding area. It is definitely worth a visit if you are a hardcore fan of the show.
9 Tollymore Forest Park, Northern Ireland: The Roads Of Winterfell
Tollymore Forest Park plays an important role in the show as it is the main road that leads to and from Winterfell. While we may not realize it while watching the show, Tollymore is shown more than most places on this list. The most notable scene that can be tied to Tollymore from the show is when the Stark family finds the direwolves. If you do happen to have a chance to explore Tollymore there is much to see and you may even be able to re-enact certain scenes from the show. Just don't expect so much snow when you visit.
8 The Dark Hedges, Northern Ireland: Kingsroad
The Dark Hedges located in Northern Ireland are some of the most notable areas from the show and some of the most sought after by fans to visit. The road is inconic to the show due to how many characters have traveled down it and how many of those characters are unsure of their fate by the time they make it to King's Landing. One of the most iconic moments filmed at the Dark Hedges is when Arya is attempting to escape King's Landing and goes undercover as a boy. The oddly shaped trees make for great environmental storytelling.
7 Ballintoy, Northern Ireland: The Iron Islands
The Iron Islands in the show and the family that lives there are some of the most controversial topics in the show. However, no one can argue that the Iron Islands and the Greyjoys are an important part of the show and the story.
One of the most visited places in Northern Ireland is known as The Dunluce Castle which is the place where the Greyjoy castle was filmed.
There are many reasons to visit Ballintoy and when you do you won't be surprised as to why the creators of the show chose there to represent the Iron Islands.
6 Girona Cathedral, Catalonia, Spain: The Free City Of Braavos
As you may have noticed so far many of the scenes in Game of Thrones have been shot in colder places specifically Northern Ireland. However, we need not forget that there are many places in the show that are filmed in less cold areas. For example, most of the southern cities in the Seven Kingdoms are actually filmed in Spain. One of these places is the Girona Cathedral which represents the free city of Braavos. The Cathedral itself represents the many face sanctuary in the show. The city has many scenes in the show including several scenes that include Arya Stark and her encounter with the Many-Face God.
5 Castillo de Almodóvar del Río, Córdoba, Spain: Highgarden, Home Of House Tyrell
House Tyrell was a wealthy and prominent house in the Seven Kingdoms until they got overtaken by the House Lannister. Before any of that happened a prominent area in the show was Highgarden which acted as the home for House Tyrell. Highgarden was like many other places in the show which represents a single castle high up on a cliff.
The real-life representation of House Tyrell can be found in Córdoba, Spain and is known as Castillo de Almodóvar del Río.
The castle itself dates back to the 8th century and now acts as a prominent tourist spot for people interested in its history and Game of Thrones fans.
4 Gaztelugatxe, Basque Country, Spain: Dragonstone, Daenerys Targaryen’s Entry Point To Westeros
The northern coastline of Spain known as Gaztelugatxe was prominently used in season 7 of Game of Thrones by Daenerys Targaryen and her armies as her entry point into Westeros. Gaztelugatxe is a very important place in the show as it marks the place where Jon Snow meets Daenerys Targaryen for the first time. The large stone bridge found in Gaztelugatxe was used by actors in the show and is actually there in real life. If you want to re-enact that iconic moment in real life you can at this large bridge. The bridge has a total of 241 steps and even if you aren't a Game of Thrones fan the bridge can provide amazing views.
3 Itzurun Beach, Zumaia, Spain: The Shores Of Dragonstone
Itzuran Beach isn't the same place as Gaztelugatxe suprisingly even though in the show they look very similar. Parts of the scenes filmed for Dragonstone were also filmed at a location known as Muriola beach. The magic of video editing is amazing by making all three of these places that are miles apart look as if they are all the same place. Itzuran Beach has the hills where Daenerys Targaryen and Jon Snow would talk about their plans and other things. This is also where Jon Snow first met with Daenerys Targaryen's dragons. It is a very iconic place in the show and a beautiful place in real life.
2 Vík, Iceland: North Of The Wall
The area in the show known as North of the Wall is a section in the show that represents a land without civilization or laws.
This is where the White Walkers live and the Wildlings. So what better place than Vik, Iceland to choose as a filming location for North of the Wall.
Parts of the filming for the North of the Wall scenes during season seven were filmed on the beaches of Vik. The area is very dark and cold which makes for a great setting in the Game of Thrones universe. There is also a plus as you can see the Northern Lights from Vik if you visit during the right time of year.
1 Svínafellsjökull Glacier, Iceland: The Fist Of The First Men
The area known as the Svínafellsjökull Glacier was used during the first couple of seasons of Game Of Thrones to represent the area North of the Wall.
The glacier is located in Skaftafell National Park which has since become a famous tourist attraction as there have been many things filmed on the glacier including a scene in Batman Begins.
More importantly, the area served to represent the scenes that showed the fist of the first men. This area was deep into the area beyond the wall and was meant to look cold and dark. This is also the place where we first see the White Walkers.