HBO Max’s latest offering is a cinematic passport thanks to the breathtaking House of the Dragon filming locations. The prequel to the HBO fantasy drama Game of Thrones travels across three European countries—England, Portugal, and Spain. The show chronicles the family drama, political climate, and war around the House Targaryen of Dragonstone 172 years prior to the birth of Queen Daenerys Targaryen. The epic series created by Ryan J. Condal and author George R.R. Martin is based on Martin’s 2018 novel Fire & Blood and features a slew of beautiful tourist attractions.
So come along with Architectural Digest as we take you on a tour to explore some of the destinations featured in House of the Dragon.
Castleton, Derbyshire, England
Castleton is a village in high-peaked Derbyshire, home to one of the oldest lead mines, and it became The Vale of Arryn in the show. (Game of Thrones fans may remember this as the home of House Arryn and the Eyrie, a castle where enemies can be pushed to their death through a moon door.) The area first settled by Celtic people is known for its classic English hamlets and its central national park that’s home to Cave Dale, a limestone valley.
St. Michael’s Mount in Mount’s Bay, Cornwall, England
The rocky tidal island of St. Michael’s Mount features a medieval church from the 12th century and an intimate living community that is linked to the island of Marazion by a causeway that tourists can reach by foot when the tide is low. The island’s main castle serves as the House of the Dragon’s fictional Driftmark (home of House Velaryon) in Blackwater Bay, the large body of water at the edge of Kings Landing. Driftmark was previously featured in Game of Thrones during the Battle of the Blackwater.
St. Michael’s Mount’s neighboring Kynance Cove is located on the east side of Mount’s Bay and is known for its beaches, blue water, white sands, and many caves. Kynance Cove’s beach is used in House of the Dragon for a Velaryon camp.
Various English Beaches
The seaside Hill at the Hartland Quay in Devon; Holywell Bay’s golden sand beaches; and nearby St. Cuthbert’s Well, a cave etched into a cliff that was formed out of ocean waves, additionally gave House of the Dragon its aquatic scenes.
This remote and historical hill town in central Portugal—its name means “Holy Mountain”—is the doppelgänger for Dragonstone, the ancestral home for House Targaryen. Its landscape features hilltop prehistoric rock formations, a medieval clock tower, lush green landscape, and granite cottages that sit between giant boulders. Its streets are carved out of tiny cobbled rocks and climb up a very steep hill, also known as Mons Sanctus. One of 12 historical villages in Portugal, Monsanto sits close to the Spanish border and was first carved over 500 years ago. In 1938, the village was voted most Portuguese town in Portugal and currently maintains building restrictions to preserve its classical aesthetics. Its overview is blanketed with burnt red- and orange-colored roof houses that are carved directly into the rock formations.
La Calahorra, Granada, Spain
The municipality La Calahorra in eastern Granada is reimagined as Pentos, one of the cities adjacent to the seas of Westeros, the fictional continent at the center of the Game of Thrones world. One of its staple landmarks, Castillo de La Calahorra, is a medieval castle that’s situated on the area’s only hill at the foot of the Sierra Nevada mountain range. Acting as the seat of House Targaryen on House of the Dragon, the castle’s exterior defies the conventions of Gothic architecture, making it one the first Renaissance-inspired structures built in Spain between 1509-1512. Its gorgeous split-level interior includes marble, four corner towers, and a central courtyard.
Plasencia, Cáceres, Extremadura, Spain
This walled city with its old cobbled streets is in the peninsula’s western region. Its scenery was used for Kings Landing, an essential area in both Game of Thrones and House of the Dragon. Its foundations are a fusion of Gothic, Moorish, and Renaissance architecture.
From Architectural Digest