The final season of “Game of Thrones” is in full swing and whether the fans’ favorite character wins the throne or not, the end of the series is sure to deal an emotional blow to those who have followed the series for years. For the diehard “Game of Thrones” fan on your client list, ease the pain of withdrawal with a trip to some of the show’s film locations, which span from Iceland and Ireland to Malta, Croatia, and beyond.
Where It All Began
While all seasons of “Game of Thrones” were filmed in multiple countries to account for the various climates and landscapes of the show’s Seven Kingdoms, some of the most recognizable locations from the season that started it all can be found in Malta. Travelers in Malta can keep an eye out for the gardens of Kings Landing, the Red Waste, the Tower of the Hand, the Stables, Maegor’s Holdfast, the Red Keep, Cobblers Square, The Street of Steel, Baelish Brothels, Coppersmith’s Wynd, King’s Gate, King’s Square, and the village of Lhazar.
Fans who would like a more guided visit to these film locations can opt for one of several GoT-themed tours offered throughout the country. Malta Film Tours, for example, offers a tour that visits several of the aforementioned locations, while also giving fans exclusive access to film sites that would be otherwise inaccessible. On the tour, guests will be guided by local actors who took part in season one of HBO’s hit series as they entertain the group with behind-the-scenes secrets and stories.
Pricing for this group tour starts at about $65 pp with options for private tours also available. For more information, visit maltafilmtours.com.
The Seven Kingdoms by Sea
Thanks to Variety Cruises, the Ironborn aren’t the only ones who can explore the Seven Kingdoms by sea. The boutique small ship cruise line offers GoT devotees a way to explore Croatia, Iceland, and Spain on three different itineraries that sail to some of the most iconic film locations in these countries.
Sailing on the Adriatic Sea, Variety Cruises offers the Dalmatian Coast: Croatia and Montenegro itinerary with sailings departing June 7, 2019 through Aug. 21, 2020 and the Tales of Croatia, Montenegro, Albania & Greece with departures scheduled May 31, 2019 through Sept. 11, 2020. Both itineraries include two days to explore Dubrovnik, which served as the main film location in Croatia for King’s Landing. The cruise also includes a day in Split, a town on Croatia’s Dalmatian Coast, known for its beaches and the fortress-like complex at its center, another GoT film location in Croatia. The medieval fortress Klis was featured in season four when Daenerys Targaryen and her army marches towards Meereen to free the slaves. The streets of Meereen were shot both on Klis Fortress and in Diocletian’s Palace in Split.
Travelers can head “North of the Wall” to Iceland for Variety Cruises’ The Iceland Saga itinerary, which includes many recognizable GoT locations featured throughout all eight seasons. Visit Grundafjordur, a quintessential Icelandic town with an optional excursion of the Snaefellsnes Peninsula. This small fishing village lies next to Mt. Kirkjufell, or “Church Mountain,” known in the Game of Thrones world as the mountain shaped like an arrowhead. The mountain is pictured in season seven when Jon Snow and his gang head north of the wall to find the army of the dead, while the Skogafoss waterfall was used in the first episode of season eight. This Iceland itinerary sails June 8- Sept. 14, 2019.
In addition, guests on The Glories of Spain & Portugal will head to Seville, Spain, where they’ll find the fictional world of Dorne as the city’s Real Alcazar was the filming location for Water Gardens and Royal Palace of Dorne featured in seasons five and six. This itinerary is available June 8, 2019 through Sept. 11, 2020.
For more information, visit varietycruises.com.
With no dragons or ships in sight, your client’s next option is to explore Westeros by land, and CIE Tours International is offering several itineraries that will allow GoT fans to do exactly that. These land tours traverse Ireland and Iceland, which were both heavily featured throughout all eight seasons of the show. With the Northern Welcome itinerary, travelers start at the Glens of Antrim—known as the Dothraki Sea on the show—where fans can look out at the Causeway Coast and imagine it filled with the nomadic Dothraki people and their fierce warriors. Fans will also recognize the site for the fatal scene where Ned Stark beheads the traitor from the Nights Watch. Other tour highlights include a trip to The Giant’s Causeway and Belfast, with its Victorian architecture and Titanic Belfast; plus a stop in Dublin, which includes a visit to the Glasnevin Cemetery Museum, Ireland’s national necropolis.
On the 14-day Jewels of Ireland itinerary, travelers can learn to “pay the iron price” at Ballintoy, site of the fictional Iron Islands, which is home to House Greyjoy. More photogenic destinations follow, including The Dingle Peninsula’s Slea Head Drive, the Cliffs of Moher, rising 700 ft. from the Atlantic, and Slieve League, Europe’s highest sea cliffs. Meanwhile, guests can head further north for the Taste of Iceland itinerary, where travelers can venture through Thingvellir National Park—known in GoT world as the Eyrie where Arya Stark traveled with The Hound. Next, life Beyond the Wall begins in Skaftafell National Park. The area’s wintery landscape will immediately be recognized as home to the Night’s Watch, Wildlings and the white walkers.
For more information, visit cietours.com.
In honor of the series’ final season, Zicasso has also launched a new itinerary—The Ultimate Game of Thrones Series Finale Tour—which takes travelers on a 15-day journey to film locations in Croatia, Spain, and Morocco; get the details here.