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Game of Thrones Experience in Belfast

August 25, 2016

One of the reasons why I was very interested in taking a trip to Belfast in Northern Ireland, was because some scenes in Game of Thrones has been shot there. So, we reserved a one day tour, Belfast Iron Islands and Stormlands Adventure, from Game of Thrones Tours Ltd. The mode of transportation in Northern Ireland is quite limited, so if you are not going to rent a car nor plan to pay a lot for taxi, then it is advisable to get a tour.

We were picked up by the company’s coach in Belfast City. Our tour guide, named Brian, was an extra in some seasons of GOT. So while on our way to our destinations, he told us stories about his auditions and experiences in GOT.

Before reaching our first stop, we passed by Carrickfergus Castle and Magheramorne Quarry, the location of Castle Black and the Wall. We were not able to make a photo stop since it is a private property, plus there’s a filming going on that time. Anyway, below are the places we have visited during our tour.

Carnlough – This is where Arya Stark was seen in Season 6 crawling up the stairs after being stabbed. We were given 20 mins to roam around in this stunning and picturesque village.

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The stairs that I am talking about.
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The village.
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This picture perfect site is just on the side of the harbor.

Cushendun Cave – The cave where Melissandre (Red Woman) gave birth to the dark spirit. While inside the cave, Brian showed us some scenes from his Ipad, so we can fully recognize the place.

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Entrance to the cave.
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The exact filming site.

Carrick A Rede Rope Bridge – It took us 15 – 20 mins trek to reach this 98 ft high bridge, and once there, we were given a few seconds to cross it, since there was a long queue. Kinda frustrating, but atleast we managed to enjoy the extraordinary sights surrounding it. In the series, this is where the bridge Balon Greyjoy fell off and died. 

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Carrick A Rede Rope Bridge
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Our failed selfie attempt.
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View before crossing the bridge.
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If you walk or rather trek a little further after crossing the bridge, this will be the view.

Larrybane Chalk Quarry – The setting for Renly Baratheon’s camp and the place where Brienne defeated Ser Loras. Brian showed us some pictures from GOT shot on this location.

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This is Brian. You might remember him from one of the episodes of GOT.

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Fullerton Arms  – We had our lunch here. Our meals were pre-ordered, so when we arrived it was ready. The restaurant have a GOT theme and it even have one of the 10 GOT doors.

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My yummy lunch, Steak and Guinness Pie.

The 10 GOT doors were made from the trees in Dark Hedges brought down by Storm Gertrude in Jan 2016. The damage caused by the storm became an instant tourism attraction since these doors were placed on 10 different pubs and restaurants near the various GOT filming sites in Northern Ireland. If you wish to know where the other doors are located, click on this link.

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One of the 10 doors.

Ballintoy Harbour – Known in the series as the Iron Islands. This is where they let us use the House of Greyjoy costumes, swords and props that they have (not really a fan of Greyjoys, but those are the only available for this tour).

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Find me. Hahaha
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Modelling Yara Greyjoy costume
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Brian usually shows pictures from the series so we can remember and appreciate the places more.

Giants Causeway – This place has not been featured in GOT, but included in the tour since it is a UNESCO world heritage site. Mainly rock formations which were the result of a volcanic eruption million of years ago.

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Get your feet ready, as the trek takes 20 – 30 mins from the coach drop off point to Giants Causeway. There are buses available to take you there, but it usually takes time to wait for it to arrive.

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Taken from the other side of Giants Causeway. It was very windy when we were there.

Dark Hedges –  A road lined with intertwined trees which forms an arch. This is known in the series as Kingsroad, where Arya Stark disguised herself as a boy.

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Most of the sites we went to have label boards like this.

During our way back to Belfast City, an episode of GOT was played, but I was too tired from the trip, so I just went to sleep.

The tour was really nice and we enjoyed all the sites we have visited. Actually, even non GOT fans will love this tour. The only downside I guess is the limited amount of time (I have expected this though) given to us for each places. I remembered catching my breath when we were on our way to the coach coming from Giants Causeway, it was a long trek and it took time for the bus to arrive. Our guide told us that he may left us behind if we didn’t get back on time, and if ever that happens, we have to take a cab and that would cost us GBP 200 (no way).

The Company also offers Winterfell tour, which I would love to try. Hopefully, this will be our reason next time to return to this wonderful place.

Game of Thrones Tours Ltd. is not affiliated with, sponsored or endorsed by HBO, nor anyone associated with Game of Thrones. For more information on their tours, you may visit their website.

*Courtesy to my husband and our friends (Ruby and Gold) for some of the pictures I’ve used here.

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Comments

  1. I am not a fan of the series but this is pretty cool! Some of my friends will scream if I show them your post (they will fly to Belfast tomorrow). The scenery is incredible. Dressing in costume was the cherry on top! #TPThursday

  2. I’ve watched GOT and although I’m not a crazy fan of the show, I’m sure I’d enjoy this tour anyway!

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