Game of Thrones’ locations

By | Category: Travel news

At some awful time of the morning UK time, the last series of Game of Thrones began in the USA. In the UK and Ireland it starts tonight at 9pm on Sky Atlantic.

Cushendun Caves in Northern Ireland – another film location of Game of Thrones. Image c Visit Britain

News media this morning has been full of spoiler alerts so that those who don’t suffer from insomnia and stayed to catch it in the night don’t feel short-changed before watching it tonight.

Rest assured, readers, I am not going to give away any plot or character details largely because I didn’t stay up, preferring to sleep the night through. And because I have never watched it in the first place so I wouldn’t understand the significance of what was going on.

But what I do understand is the considerable affect the saga has made to tourism.

In Northern Ireland, Castle Ward has been sued as a location as have many other places in the province and, over the years, guided tours and trails have been set up so that affecionados of the series can wander whether the characters have gone before. Game of Thrones has generated significant interest in the province and fans have made their way in ever-increasing numbers.

But the interest isn’t confined to Northern Ireland. Croatia, Iceland, Spain and Morocco have been used as locations and each is benefitting from that link.

Countries around  the world have seen the effect that television and film locations can have on visitor numbers so Czechia, Poland, New Zealand are just a few of the countries where attractive tax or financial incentives have been offered to encourage film-makers to head to their shores. Get a blockbuster made and visitors will come for years. Star Wars fans still head to the Tunisia to see the set that George Lucas left behind despite the fact that is was twenty years ago. Visitors go to Atlanta, eighty years after Gone with the Wind was filmed here and although the setting of Miss Potter in Cumbria is only to where she moved in later life, it still draws crowds.

But then so does the stadium used by Arsenal Football Club. The setting of the 1939 film, The Arsenal Stadium Mystery, was in the old stadium before the Emirates opened but people still flock to the site. Or maybe they do that because of the football!

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