In the world of entertainment, few events have left such a profound mark all across the world as the Game of Thrones TV series. This epic saga swept us away to distant lands, immersing us in a world of intrigue, dragons and power through a massive blockbuster that kept viewers hooked to the screen. But did you know that part of this fictional world, especially in its later seasons, was filmed in the beautiful Spanish region of Extremadura?
In fact, some of the region’s towns, landscapes and monuments were the true stars of the epic’s greatest scenes, including its major battles. That’s why “screen tourism” is becoming increasingly popular in Spain. This trend involves visiting the filming locations of the most famous films and television series. Fans of these productions want to experience being in the same places they saw on the screen.
Extremadura is by no means a stranger to this growing movement in the travel sector. The region has been and continues to be a favourite destination for countless fans of the Game of Thrones saga given that the region boasts incredible scenery that has become iconic thanks to the series. What’s more, the sights are even more impressive in person than they appear on television. Why don’t we go on a little tour of the scenes? Together, we’ll take you on an exciting journey where the magic of the screen meets the region’s rich history and natural beauty.
The historic centre of Cáceres
With its vast array of monuments, the city of Cáceres features prominently in Game of Thrones. A variety of iconic and highly recognisable places served as the settings to represent King’s Landing, given the city’s mediaeval character. The Plaza de Santa María, located in the heart of the old town, was used to represent the triumphal entry of Euron Greyjoy into the city, with the Co-cathedral of Santa María in the background (surrounded by imposing buildings including the Episcopal Palace, the Mayoralgo Palace, as well as the palatial residence of Hernando de Ovando). The crowd cheered on Euron as he advanced towards the Red Keep along Cuesta de la Compañía street, near the Tower of the Storks.
Nearly the entire historic centre of Cáceres became King’s Landing in Game of Thrones / Agatha Selgas
In addition, the Arco de la Estrella or Puerta Nueva, one of the city’s most famous symbols, also appears clearly, albeit fleetingly, as it could not be left out.
In another scene, the Tower of the Storks and the Plaza de las Veletas represented the citadel of Oldtown, where Sam studied to become a Maester.
Los Barruecos is a beautiful natural setting and protected area located in Malpartida de Cáceres, a short distance from the capital of Cáceres. This impressive site was chosen as one of the most important settings for the seventh season of Game of Thrones, representing the crucial Loot Train Attack, a pivotal event in the series.
Los Barruecos was transformed into a battlefield where the forces of Daenerys Targaryen fought an intense battle against the forces of House Lannister. In this scene, Daenerys, accompanied by her dragon Drogon, attacks the Lannister ranks as they attempt to carry the gold sacked from Highgarden back to King’s Landing. The battle is a pivotal moment in the series, notable for its intensity and spectacle. In 2016, when the scene was filmed, it was considered the most technically spectacular battle in the history of television.
Los Barruecos, without dragons or battles, shows all its beauty / Extremadura Tourism
Los Barruecos provided the perfect backdrop for this epic scene from Game of Thrones. The landscape includes a combination of green fields, lagoons, and unique rock formations, making it both a picturesque and dramatic location for the battle. The choice of Los Barruecos as a location not only highlights the natural beauty of Extremadura, but also shows its versatility as a filming location that can be transformed into a fantasy world. Four placards have been installed at the site, describing the filming of the most representative scenes within the location’s natural settings.
Trujillo Castle bears testimony to the magnificent historical and architectural wealth of the province of Cáceres. Situated on a hilltop, the castle rises majestically over the old town and monuments of Trujillo, offering spectacular panoramic views of the surrounding area. The construction dates back to Moorish times, although it has undergone numerous transformations over the centuries, resulting in a unique blend of architectural styles, from Romanesque to Gothic and Renaissance.
The fortress has witnessed important historical moments and has played a crucial role in the defence of the city over the years. In Game of Thrones, the castle was transformed into Casterly Rock, the iconic stronghold of House Lannister. From its crenelated walls, Jaime Lannister and Bronn of the Blackwater can be seen worriedly watching the rival army they would later have to face.
The Plaza Mayor of Trujillo with a statue of Pizarro in its natural state / José Miguel Redondo (Sele)
Trujillo remains important for the prequel series House of the Dragon. The first season features shots taken in the Plaza Mayor, the Church of San Francisco and, of course, the castle. In addition, some historical buildings have been adapted to recreate sets that reflect the period in which the series is set. The greatest transformation involved replacing the statue of Pizarro -which presides over the Plaza Mayor- with the statue of a dragon. This is the very essence of screen magic.
The province of Cáceres and Extremadura, bastions of screen tourism
The appearance of these Extremaduran sites in such a smash hit has contributed to the region’s international recognition as a leading destination for screen tourism, attracting fans of the series and lovers of nature and history alike. Furthermore, this choice underlines the wealth of landscapes, monuments, and prodigious sites that Extremadura has to offer to travellers wishing to explore the fusion of fiction and reality in a dreamlike setting. This is something that the Extremadura Film Commission is keenly aware of. The commission played an essential role for the series to be filmed in the area. Who knows what the next adventures filmed in this beautiful region will be?
By José Miguel Redondo (Sele)
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