Who doesn’t love Game of Thrones? It’s got everything. Dragons, giants, refugees finding a way to get through a wall… What’s not to love?
As most people know, many scenes in the popular HBO series are filmed on location in Iceland. It’s no big surprise. Iceland’s landscape is varied and other-worldly, and has been very popular for filmmakers from around the world. From Star Wars to James Bond, The Fast and the Furious to The Secret Life of Walter Mitty, you have probably seen more of Iceland than you realize.
Your Game Of Thrones Tour Of Iceland
There are package tours that take you to the different locations, but I want to tell you a little bit about each of them and show you on a map, so you can head to each location on your own, if you decide to rent a car and drive around. Even if you decide to do a planned tour, this article should be good reading before you go.
Svínafellsjökull is a glacier in Vatnajökull national park, on the South Coast of Iceland. If you take a drive around the south on your own, you must not miss the national park. It has great sights to see. There is even a campground in there, so if you are camping in the summer, it’s a great stop.
Svínafellsjökull has been used in several Hollywood films, and was used for the landscapes beyond the Wall in Game of Thrones.
Here is a map of Svínafellsjökull Glacier:
Another glacier that’s been seen on Game of Thrones is Mýrdalsjökull. The Fimmvörðuháls hiking trail leads there, so if you’re into hiking, it’s a great one to put on your bucket list. It’s located close to Vík, on the South Coast, and it’s a great area to explore.
Mýrdalsjökull was used to portray the Fist of the First Men, north of the Wall, and Höfðabrekka, a hiking trail close to the glacier, represented Northern Westeros.
Here is a map of Mýrdalsjökull:
Lake Mývatn and the surrounding area
Mývatn is one of the most beautiful places in Iceland, in my opinion. It’s a lake in the north of Iceland, and it is a stunning area, unfortunately often overlooked. If for no other reason, you should definitely try to pay it a visit.
The area around Mývatn has also been used quite extensively in Game of Thrones. Dimmuborgir, a majestic location close to the lake, was used as the place where Mance Rayder and the Free Folk set up camp, and also where Samwell Tarly and Lord Commander Mormont were attacked by White Walkers.
Hverir is a geothermal hotspot near Mývatn which has also featured on Game of Thrones, when the steam emanating from the earth was used to resemble a blizzard that Samwell stumbled through. Hverir is an otherworldly place that you should not miss if you are in the north.
Grjótagjá Cave is another place around Mývatn that has been seen on Game of Thrones. It was the romantic getaway for Jon Snow and Ygrette in season 3. There is a hot spring inside the cave, but be aware that the water is too hot for bathing. But you should definitely check it out if you are there.
There are also some natural baths and other wonderful stuff in the Mývatn region. I can’t recommend it enough.
Here is a map of Mývatn:
Þingvellir National Park
Þingvellir is a gorgeous national park on the Golden Circle. It is the closest of all these places to Reykjavik, and of course there are a lot of different tours that go there. It’s also very easy to drive there yourself. It lies in a rift valley that marks the crest of the Mid-Atlantic Ridge and the boundary between the North American and Eurasian tectonic plates. Þingvellir has been designated as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO.
It is a unique and beautiful place, but it does get crowded, as it is a very popular destination. Þingvellir features prominently in season 4 of Game of Thrones, and any fan should check it out.
Here is a map of Þingvellir:
Kirkjufell, or the Church Mountain, is a magnificent mountain in the Snæfellsnes peninsula in Iceland, one of the most beautiful regions in the country. Snæfellsnes is believed to be a place of great spiritual energy, and it has some of the most varied landscapes in Iceland. It’s fairly close to Reykjavik, and one of the areas I recommend to most of my visitors.
Kirkjufell can be seen in several scenes in Game of Thrones, in seasons 6 and 7 and is most notable as the “arrowhead mountain” that the Hound and the company north of the Wall see when capturing a wight.
Here is a map of Kirkjufell:
Dyrhólaey is a small promontory on the South Coast of Iceland that used to be referred to as the Cape of Portland by seamen. It has a unique arch that is very picturesque, and in the summer you can see plenty of puffins there.
The cliffs of Dyrhólaey were used to represent Eastwatch-by-the-Sea in Season 7 of Game of Thrones. It is close to Vík and Reynisfjara, so you shouldn’t miss it on your tour of the South.
Here is a map of Dyrhólaey:
These are only a few of the most notable locations in Iceland that can be seen on Game of Thrones. There are certainly more, and of course there are also more locations in Iceland you could check out. But these should put any Game of Thrones fan on the right track. Some of these are easy to get to, and others may be a bit more tricky.
If you decide to take a trip to see any of these, make sure you stay safe.
If you need any advice, we hope you’ll get in touch, and of course that you’ll check out our Free Guide to Iceland, if you haven’t already.
We will see you in Iceland.