The end of Game of Thrones is around the corner, but fans will soon be able to visit the world of Westeros IRL, as HBO works on opening some of its filming locations in Northern Ireland to the public. According to Deadline, the network is turning the sets of Winterfell, Castle Black, and King's Landing into tourist destinations.
“HBO is thrilled to celebrate the work of the Game of Thrones creative team and crew by preserving these locations and inviting fans to visit Northern Ireland and explore Westeros in person,” Jeff Peters, HBO’s VP of licensing and retail, told Deadline. He went on to add, "The opportunity to celebrate Northern Ireland’s pivotal role in the life and legacy of the show and share its culture, beauty and warmth is also a huge inspiration behind these legacy projects.”
Winterfell, which serves as the home of the Stark family and bastard Jon Snow, is filmed at Castle Ward in an area called County Down. Those who want a taste of the Night’s Watch can visit Castle Black at a disused quarry in Magheramorne, while parts of Kings Landing is found near the village of Armoy. The attractions will be “on a scale and scope bigger than anything the public has ever seen,” according to HBO. “Each site will feature the sets from the show as well as exhibits of ‘GOT’ costumes, props, weapons, set decorations, art files, models, and other production materials,” Variety notes.
“We couldn’t be more excited about the Game of Thrones Legacy project coming to Northern Ireland. While fans have seen the stunning landscapes, coastlines and mountains in the series, we are thrilled they will now have the opportunity to fully experience the charm of Northern Ireland and immerse themselves in to the world of Westeros,” said John McGrillen, CEO of tourism in Northern Ireland. “The Game of Thrones Legacy project will be a game changer for Northern Ireland on a global tourism level."
Fans can begin making pilgrimages to Northen Ireland when the locations open in 2019. GoT ends its 8-season run sometime in early 2019, while one spinoff is already in early production.