Northern Ireland will have a Game of Thrones tour that will take guests to some of the most exciting sites of HBO’s hit series “Game of Thrones.” A start date has not yet been announced.
The tour has been a long time in the making. A spokesperson for Northern Ireland Screen told the Belfast Telegraph, “We have been working with the various tourism bodies for over a year, we got in touch about setting up this tour. We are helping them in terms of resources and putting them in touch with the right people like the broadcaster and distributor.”
Currently there is a self-guided itinerary on the website of the Causeway Coast and Glens tourism partnership.
Many scenes of the hit show are filmed in Northern Ireland. Moyra Lock of NI Screen, the government agency which has given “Game of Thrones” a grant-aid said about the show, “It’s been an incredible shop window for our most spectacular scenery.” She added, “From Tollymore Forest at the foot of the Mournes to the Antrim coastline, our countryside has never looked so amazing.”
Helen Carey of the Northern Irish Tourist Board said, “We really want to put it out there internationally that Northern Ireland is home to “Game of Thrones.”’
South of Belfast, Castle Ward acts as Winterfell, home to the Stark family in the series. Castle Ward is an eighteenth century house featuring both classical and gothic architecture and sits on 820 acres that also contain gardens and woodlands. The house and grounds are open to the public for tours. The Tollymore Forest down the road provided the backdrop for the White Walkers.
The Causeway Coast has been featured in several scenes. Renly Baratheon’s army set up camp in the Larrybane Chalk Quarry and he met his brother Stannis on the cliff top of the Murlough Bay. The small harbor in Portballintrae, Co Antrim set the scene for Theon Greyjoy’s return to the Iron Islands.
Based on the fantasy novel series “A Song of Ice and Fire” by George R. R. Martin, “Game of Thrones” is currently in its third season and has been confirmed for a fourth season. It airs at 9:00pm on Sunday on HBO.
Here’s a BBC report on HBO’s filming in Northern Ireland: