New Delhi [India]: The world eagerly anticipated the premiere of Game of Thrones season 7 but fans aren’t waiting for winter to come to enjoy Seven Kingdoms-inspired vacations, as Hotels.com™ reports a dramatic hike in searches to the stunning destinations featured in the series.
Among the world’s most popular shows, ithas inspired the imaginations of millions of ‘Thronies’ across the globe since it first aired in 2011. Last season, over 23 million viewers worldwide tuned in to each episode.
The destinations that feature most heavily throughout the seasons, and those anticipated to appear in season seven, are becoming must-visit hotspots. Travel expert Hotels.com reports huge increases in searches to destinations in Iceland, Spain, Croatia and Northern Ireland.
Going Beyond the Wall
Iceland, which plays host to arguably the series’ most iconic landscape, Beyond the Wall, has enjoyed the most dramatic surge in searches. The scenic destination is up over 285 percent since 2014, when the show mania truly began to take the world by storm.
The upward trend continues for the destination as year-on-year (2017 vs 2016) data shows a 30 percent surge for those eager to walk in the frosty foot-steps of heart-throb Jon Snow, where he famously battles Wildlings and White Walkers.
Landing in Croatia
A number of destinations in Croatia, another key filming location, have also enjoyed a tourism boom. The ancient city of Split on the Dalmatian coast has seen an uplift of nearly 120 percent in searches. Fans of Daenerys Targaryen enjoy touring the city’s walled Diocletian’s Palace, the site of the Mother of Dragons’ throne room.
The less well-known Croatian city of Sibenik, the site for the famous city of Braavos, has enjoyed a similar lift with hotel searches up 60 percent.
The Dorne of Seville
Fans are also looking to the warm climes and epicurean lifestyle of Seville in Spain, with searches to the destination up 145 percent. Seville was used for scenes set in Dorne, the most exotic of the Seven Kingdoms, where the ornate private estate of the House Martell stands.
In the lead up to the much-anticipated season seven premiere, Belfast has been on top of fans’ wish lists. Having featured in almost all seasons, the wild and ragged northern end of the Emerald Isle is rumoured to become the jewel in the latest season’s crown. With searches for Belfast hotels up nearly 120 percent ahead of the season premiere, the destination is set to welcome thousands of fans in 2017.
“As experts in accommodation and enthusiasts for travel, we’re thrilled to be able to facilitate memorable, rewarding stays for those who want to get close to the action. Along with so many around the world, we look forward to season seven and to enjoying the stunning locations in which it’s filmed,” said Hotels.com Director Regional Marketing Greater China, SEA and India at Hotels.com brand, Jessica Chuang.
Some of the top hotels to stay at when visiting filming locations
Myvatn, Iceland – Beyond the Wall
For the adventurous at heart, a stay at the trendy three star Foss hotel Myvatn is a must. A half an hour’s walk from Lake Myvatn, the location used for filming Beyond the Wall. Also nearby are Myvatn Nature Baths and the dramatic Hverfjall Crater – perfect for an immersion into the wilderness that the Wildlings and White Walkers roam.
The Foss hotel Myvatn is available from Rs. 16,282 per room per night.
Seville, Spain – Water Gardens of Dorne
The 3.5 star Hotel Boutique Elvira Plaza is a step into the lavish world of Dorne, the southernmost part of Westeros. This light, bright, beautiful hotel is just a stone’s throw from Seville’s majestic Alcazar, also known as the private palace residence of the House Martell.
The Hotel Boutique Elvira Plaza is available from Rs. 5,885 per room per night.
Split, Croatia – Meereen
Want to stay like royalty? The four star Bella Notte Di Spalato is just the place. Situated next to the city’s ancient Diocletian’s Palace, this beautiful hotel is heavily influenced by its surrounding old-world architecture. Guests will enjoy wandering the narrow stone streets and exploring the hidden alcoves.
The Bella Notte De Spalato is available from Rs. 13,100 per room per night.
Sibenik, Croatia – Braavos
Situated just outside the centre of Sibenik the four star Heritage Hotel Life Palace offers old world charm with all the decadent trimmings. Only a two-minute walk from the famous Saint James Cathedral – guests will stay right in the heart of this iconic city.
The Heritage Hotel Life Palace is available from Rs. 10,620 per room per night.
Belfast, Northern Ireland – The Iron Islands
With its sumptuous, yet contemporary style, the beautiful four star Malmaison Belfast is the perfect contrast to the rugged landscapes found in this region. Northern Ireland plays host to a huge amount of s filming – but much of the action takes place at the Titanic Studios in Belfast’s Titanic Quarter. True fans can enjoy a studio tour and spot the stars on set.
Malmaison Belfast is available from Rs.7,949 per room per night.
Essaouira, Morocco – Astapor
The ancient city of Essaouira is the filming site for Astapor, the home of the Unsullied Army. Stay in the 4 star Dar L’Oussia, located along the old Portuguese fortification by the sea, where most of the filming of Astapor took place. This unique property features beautiful traditional Moroccan design with a modern stylish flare and is located only minutes from the beach.
The Dar L ‘Oussia is available from Rs. 5,046 per room per night. (ANI)