I am both, a solo female traveller and a nerd. And as any respectable nerd would, one of the things I love to do while I travel is visiting places that inspired either books or films. I think you can guess that I’m a huge fan of George R.R. Martin’s work. And, since Europe is FULL of Game of Thrones filming locations, I couldn’t miss the chance to visit some of the most iconic ones.
With the season seven premiere happening today (can you believe it?! I can’t wait!), I felt the urge to share with you my daytrip to Girona, a small town near Barcelona that brings to life places like King’s Landing, Oldtown and the Free City of Braavos!
Girona, Spain: A Catalonian Medieval Treasure
Even if you are not a Game of Thrones’ fan yourself, Girona is still a lovely destination. This medieval city in Catalonia has amazing churches and cathedrals. Its alleys are perfect to explore and get lost and the views of the landscape from the protective walls are something that can’t be missed.
The Old City of Braavos: Arya and the Waif chase Scene
If you watched season six, you might recall a lot of scenes depicting Arya Stark blind a begging in the streets of Braavos. Well, Girona is one of the Game of Thrones filming locations where this part of the story takes place. I must admit that I wandered around the alleys looking for the Stark girl, but I didn’t find a clue. I guess it’s because she’s already half-way to Westeros by now. There are many places where these scenes were filmed, but if you look at the general scenery (an omit the cars) you can totally get that Braavosi feel.
However, if you are a true fan, you surely can’t forget the iconic scene where Arya is desperately running away from The Waif (AKA: that little shit) and stumbles across a street market in her attempt to run away. It was definitely one of the most heart-pounding moments of the season for me. And, well… Guess what?
These are the steps of Sant Domenec, near the city centre. My friend Pau and I spent a lot of time in there trying to figure out how they filmed the scene (we studied media, we are that nerdy) and at the end I decided to take a less dramatic photo at this gorgeous green door.
Additionally, there were some Arabic baths were part of these sequence also takes place, but they were closed when we arrived. However, the place is gorgeous, so if you have the change, get there early and have a look.
Game of Thrones filming locations: King’s Landing and the Sept of Baelor
Arya might have travelled a long way to get from Westeros to Bravoos, but the truth is that, in real life, King’s Landing is right next to the free city.
If you remember Cersei’s walk of shame (and how could you not), you might also recall that Queen Margaery was about to face the same faith when Sir Jamie Lannister and the Tyrell troops came to stop the High Sparrow.
Well, that scene took place at Girona’s main cathedral. Pau’s niece was very disappointed because she thought the place looked bigger in the screen. And although they did do a great green screen work, this is one of the most breath-taking Game of Thrones filming locations. You can climb up all the 90 steps and enjoy the view and even get a ticket to get inside the cathedral.
Also, if you go to your left side, you’ll find the archway where Jamie and the troops crossed to get into the sept. This spot will guarantee you to make you feel like you travelled to King’s Landing.
Sweet tooth: Jamie Lannister’s Golden Hand
Ok, this is definitely not one of the Game of Thrones filming locations, but it still can’t be missed. Inspired by the show series, Rocambolesc, a Catalonian ice-cream shop decided to please fans (and make a good profit) and sell Jamie Lannister’s Golden hand.
Yup, you read right. A bit gruesome if you like, but this icicle is covered with an ornate mango crust and filled with a blood orange mix, so when you start eating your pop, it suddenly starts to look like it’s bleeding. Oh, Spaniards, I love you.
If the icicle is too much for you, you can still enjoy some of the other ice cream flavours of the shop (they also have a Darth Vader icicle), have a stroll around the river and continue enjoying Girona. And, if you do so, don’t forget to tell me how it went in the comment section!
That’s it for today. I must say that also visited some other Game of Thrones filming locations in Northern Ireland, but before writing this post I realised they weren’t enough to fill an article. Luckily, I’ll be going back in a few weeks (I’m so excited!) and I’ll correct that awful mistake.
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I’ll guess I’ll see you on the road.