Croatia: Game of Thrones Locations

In recent years Croatia, especially the Dalmatian Coast, has seen a massive upsurge in its popularity because it has been one of the prime locations for the filming of the wildly popular TV series ‘Game of Thrones (GOT)’. Stores selling GOT t-shirts and memorabilia can be found in most cities and airports, GOT tours are a common sight in Dubrovnik and now there is even a GOT museum in Split.

In this post we will put some of our photos from the actual GOT filming locations along with the screenshots of the corresponding scenes from the series. This is to show how the use of props, CGI, lighting, colour tone and actors modify a location, sometimes even rendering it unrecognizable. Even people who are not fans of the series might find this interesting. 

SCENES IN ŠIBENIK

The most important bank of the GOT universe, called Iron Bank, is located in the city of Braavos. Braavos is also where Arya Stark goes for her training to be an assassin. Many of the scenes for Braavos have been filmed in Šibenik.

Šibenik’s iconic Cathedral of St. James, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is the Iron Bank. The building has been massively enhanced with CGI.
A scene from season 5 shot outside the cathedral in which Mace Tyrell visits the Iron Bank.

SCENES IN SPLIT

In the series, Daenerys spends most of the seasons 4 and 5 in the city of Mereen. Many of the scenes for Mereen have been filmed in the streets and cellars of the 1,700 years old Diocletian’s Palace in Split.

This scene where a slave master in Mereen is attacked by slaves was filmed in front of the Papalic Palace. It can be understood from the design of the palace’s portal.
This scene in which the Sons of Harpy ambush the Unsullied soldiers is shot in the vestibule of Diocletian’s Palace.

SCENES IN DUBROVNIK

Dubrovnik stands in for King’s Landing – the capital city and the centre of power in the GOT universe. Apart from King’s Landing, scenes from some other cities and places have also been filmed in Dubrovnik.

Dubrovnik is the King’s Landing. The city has been changed and expanded with CGI. We have marked a couple of buildings so that it becomes easy to correlate the two photos.

JESUIT STAIRCASE

Great Sept of Baelor, the centre of all religious activities, royal weddings and royal funerals, is shown to be situated at the top of the Jesuit Staircase. Hence, this staircase features prominently in the scenes of Tywin Lannister’s funeral, Margaery and Tommen’s wedding and most famously (or infamously) in Cersei’s ‘Walk of Shame’. In reality, the staircase leads to the beautiful Church of St. Ignatius which is neither as grand nor huge like the Great Sept of Baelor.

Scenes shot at Jesuit Staircase (clockwise from top left) – Cersei arriving for Funeral of Tywin Lannister, Cersei’s Walk of Shame begins, Tommen blocked from meeting the High Sparrow and Margaery and Tommen’s wedding .
The staircase photographed from the top. In the scene of Cersei’s Walk of Shame, the CGI Red Keep is visible is the distance. The inset scene shows Cersei arriving for Tywin Lannister’s funeral.

DOMINICAN MONASTERY/ST. DOMINIC STREET

St. Dominic Street, in front of the Dominican Monastery, is used in many episodes as the crowded and dirty market of King’s Landing. It is also where Cersei continues her ‘Walk of Shame’.

Cersei’s Walk of shame in St. Dominic Street
This scene where a man is making a speech against the Lannisters has been filmed on the steps of the Dominican Monastery.

PLOCE GATE

Ploce Gate, the eastern gate of Dubrovnik, is where Cersei’s ‘Walk of Shame’ ends.

Cersei’s Walk of Shame ends at the Ploce Gate.
Red Keep added behind the Ploce Gate with CGI.
Bronn standing at the inner portal of Ploce Gate.

PILE GATE

Pile Gate is the western gate of Dubrovnik.

Joffery with the Kingsguard in the courtyard of Pile Gate.
This small doorway through which Sansa is trying to escape is located in the Pile Gate courtyard.

ETHNOGRAPHIC MUSEUM

The Ethnographic Museum of Dubrovnik substitutes for the infamous Littlefinger’s Brothel.

This scene with Tyrion and Oberyn is filmed outside the ethnographic museum.

RECTOR’S PALACE

The interior of Rector’s Palace doubles up as the mansion of the Spice King of Qarth. Daenerys visits the palace to ask the Spice King for his ships which would allow her Dothraki army to cross the Narrow Sea and reach Westeros. The scene has been shot in the atrium of Rector’s Palace. 

Daenerys talking to the Spice King of Qarth in the atrium of Rector’s Palace.
Atrium of Rector’s Palace
Daenerys talking to the Spice King of Qarth in the atrium of Rector’s Palace.

FORT LOVRIJENAC

Fort Lovrijenac, located just outside the city walls, is the setting for Red Keep – the castle where the king lives.

This scene is from King Joffrey’s name day ceremony.
A scene involving Cersei and Littlefinger in the Red Keep.
Cersei and Littlefinger in the courtyard of Red Keep/Fort Lovrijenac.
A scene involving Bronn, Tyrion and Podrick Payne at Fort Lovrijenac.
In this scene the Hound rescues Sansa from a bunch of men

CITY WALLS

The magnificent city walls are probably the reason why the GOT team chose Dubrovnik as one of the prime locations for the series. They can be seen in various scenes throughout the series.

This scene with Cersei and Jamie has been shot at Fort Bokar with Fort Lovrijenac in the background. Unfortunately, tourists can’t actually go to Fort Bokar so our photo is from a different angle.
Cersei and Tommen on the walls above Pile Gate.
Minceta Tower is the House of the Undying in Qarth in season 2 where Daenerys goes to find her dragons.
Minceta Tower also substituted for the prison in season 8 where Jon Snow was kept after killing Daenerys.
Jon Snow looking over the old harbour of Dubrovnik after being released from prison.

DUBROVNIK’S WEST HARBOUR AND PIER

Many important scenes have been filmed around Dubrovnik’s West Harbour (also known as Pile Harbour) and its pier. In the series this place is known as Blackwater Bay.

Sansa and Shae talking at the pier in season 3.
Jon says goodbye to Stark family before leaving for the wall in the final episode of the series and Sansa asking Littlefinger to help him escape King’s Landing at the pier.
Princess Myrcella leaving for Dorne.
Lannisters bidding farewell to Princess Myrcella as she leaves for Dorne. In reality this tiny beach is used by a kayaking company.
Long shot of the above mentioned beach where Cersei waits for Myrcella’s arrival from Dorne. Observe the use of CGI behind the wall.
Jon walks towards the pier after being released from prison in the last episode of the series. Notice the path in front of the cave that has been extended using CGI.
A scene showing the Gold Cloaks killing King Robert Baratheon’s bastard children in season 2.

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