The wait is almost over, as the return of popular TV series, Game of Thrones, is set to premiere on UK screens tomorrow night. With fans littering the internet with spoilers and rumours it is clear that this season will certainly excite the shows loyal followers. Season four will show the highly anticipated ‘Purple Wedding’ of King Joffrey Baratheon and Margaery Tyrell, filmed in the historic streets of Dubrovnik’s Park Gradac, and continue to grip Game of Thrones fans with its shocking and addictive storylines.
Park Gradac, locally known as the ‘The Empire of the Sun,’ is located just metres away from Dubrovnik’s Old Town, where previous scenes for Game of Thrones have been filmed. The medieval city of Dubrovnik, once described as “Paradise on Earth” by George Bernard Shaw, proved to be the ideal setting for HBO’S adaptation of George RR Martin’s series of novels, A Song of Ice and Fire. Producers claim to have found the perfect match in Dubrovnik, with a history of political conflict, the fictional war scenes between the Seven Kingdoms in Game of Thrones are not dissimilar to the events that took place in the very streets they were filmed in. Legendary scenes such as the King Landing’s riot and the memorable Battle of Blackwater were filmed within the preserved city walls of Dubrovnik, originally built in the 10th century to protect the city from potential invaders.
It is undeniable that film producers are continuously drawn to Croatia, particularly in the historic buildings embedded in the Old Town’s, such as the Fort of Lovrijenac, built in the eleventh century where Game of Thrones fans will see scenes of The Red Keep- home to the Crown and legendary Iron Throne. Season four is also set to show scenes filmed in the picturesque city of Split, which lies on the eastern Adriatic coast.
In recent reports, Dubrovnik became the number one movie landscape worth visiting, beating the iconic landscapes of New Zealand, where the mesmerising Lord Of The Rings films were created. Already a popular holiday destination, visits to the walled city of Dubrovnik have significantly increased since A Game of Thrones filming began in the Adriatic city. It is not just the lively streets, charming boutiques and Mediterranean climates that continue to drive tourists to Croatia each year. A holiday to Dubrovnik can now include a walking tour of the many filming locations featured in Game of Thrones. Local guides will happily take enthusiasts on a tour of the Rector’s Palace, striking Lokrum island and magnificent Minceta Tower, which fans will recognise as Qarth, the trading city of Essos.
The fortresses, ancient walls and the medieval ambience of Croatia make an undoubtedly ideal setting for A Game of Thrones, and with so many captivating scenes to relive, you can discover Dubrovnik and unearth the fictional continents of Westeros and Essos this summer, before the “winter comes.”