15 Most Majestic Filming Locations to Visit Around the World

15 Most Majestic Filming Locations to Visit Around the World

From fantasy blockbusters to romantic classics!

Have you dreamt of starring in a blockbuster film? This summer season, fly to gorgeous filming locations and picturesque film-inspired destinations around the world to experience cinematic action in real life!

From a mystical 18th-century Game of Thrones castle to an unassuming bench featured in The Fault in Our Stars, there are numerous famous film sites and film-inspired places suitable for movie buffs of all ages. You can now visit some of these destinations in Europe and Australia from as low as S$559 with the all-inclusive Economy Class special fares during The Great Emirates Sale.

Prior to embarking on your adventure, take a look at this guide and hunt down iconic film-inspired places:

1. SEA Life Aquarium Melbourne, Australia

Image credit: SEA LIFE Melbourne

SEA Life Aquarium Melbourne features the world’s first aquarium exhibit, Finding Dory and Friends: The Experience, dedicated to Disney Pixar’s 2016 smashing hit Finding Dory. This all-new exhibit showcases thousands of flamboyant coral reefs and marine life including Dory and Nemo.

If you would like to relive magical moments of this classic animation favourite, consider visiting with your family and enjoy some valuable bonding time. Thereafter, hop on for a road trip along the idyllic Great Ocean Road.

2. Angkor Thom, Cambodia

Image credit: Robert Nyman

The Bayon Temple gained its Hollywood status after being featured in Lara Croft: Tomb Raider, where several characters braved through dangers to recover the first piece of the Triangle of Light. This historically important site, located within the ancient city of Angkor Thom, Cambodia, is the last capital city of the Khmer Empire.

Although Angkor Thom is a mere shadow of its former glory, its sheer scale will leave you spellbound.

3. Aokigahara, Japan

Image credit: Guilhem Vellut

Aokigahara, also known as the Sea of Trees, has the unfortunate distinction of being the second most popular suicide spot in the world after the Golden Gate Bridge.

This hot suicide spot was featured in the 2015 American mystery drama, The Sea of Trees. This film details the story of two men, played by Matthew McConaughey and Ken Watanabe, who encountered each other after going into Aokigahara to commit suicide. While the storyline of the film leaves much to be desired, Aokigahara still shines in the film as the beautiful, ever-present backdrop.

4. Piazza Navona, Italy

Located in the historical capital city of Rome, Piazza Navona, also known as the Fountain of the Four Rivers, is the city’s most beautiful square famed for its three exquisite fountains, ancient churches and a multitudinous array of quality restaurants and cafes.

It was also one of the filming locations for the 2010 biographical movie, Eat, Pray, Love. The lead character, Elizabeth Gilbert, went on a gastronomic adventure across Rome to discover the true pleasure of nourishment through Italian food and visited Piazza Navona for authentic Italian gelato. So if you are on a food quest in Rome, be sure to grab a gelato here as well. The famous Tartufo dessert is also a must-try!

5. Christ Church College, England

Image credit: veggiefrog

Christ Church College in Oxford is renowned for being one of the key filming locations of the Harry Potter series. Potterheads would recognise this rustic stairway and its gorgeous gothic arches where Harry Potter, Hermione Granger, and Ron Weasley had their first glimpse into life at Hogwarts.

Image credit: Chensiyuan

The Hogwarts Dining Hall where the iconic Sorting Ceremony was first held (and where Harry Potter was first assigned to Gryffindor) was also inspired by the grand, luxurious setting of Great Hall in Christ Church College.

6. Dubrovnik, Croatia

Image credit: Revilo Sixteen

The old town of Dubrovnik in Croatia served as the fictional King’s Landing in Game of Thrones and it is not hard to see why the producers selected this late-medieval walled town. Boasting shimmering turquoise waters in the day and marble streets lined with beautiful late-Renaissance houses and dimly-lit street lamps at night, the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Dubrovnik is every traveller’s dream.

As you wander along the streets of the old town, head to Jesuit Staircase. This was the iconic Baroque stairs where Cersei Lannister had to walk naked through the streets of King’s Landing in the fifth season of Walk of Shame. Otherwise, explore St. Dominic Street where multiple Game of Thrones market scenes were shot. Conquer the latest filming sites of season seven with these seven breathtaking locations around the world!

7. Zurich, Switzerland

Zurich is a popular playground for sleuths – and we can see why. Traditional buildings designed in Baroque and Neoclassical architectural styles and modern structures blend perfectly to represent the many facets of this mysteriously charming city.

Featured prominently in The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, Bank Sparhafen in Zurich was where the female lead, Lisbeth Salander, carried out her multi-million banking transactions. The ultra-posh five-star Dolder Grand hotel was where she stayed.

8. Amsterdam, The Netherlands

While Amsterdam is not a typical filming site for romantic, heart-tugging scenes, the crisscrossing waterways and quaint gabled houses are perfect for the summer sensation, The Fault in Our Stars.

Image credit: Alexandre Breveglieri

Image credit: Massimo Catarinella

You can follow the movie trail to the iconic bench located near the intersection of the Herengracht and Leidsegracht canals where the star-crossed lovers, Hazel Grace Lancaster and Augustus Waters, held each other in tight embrace.

Hop on Amsterdam Tram #4 to the Keizersgracht stop for a scenic stroll along the prettiest part of Amsterdam’s Canal Belt.

9. Matamata, New Zealand

Image credit: Jamie Valle

This place needs no introduction – avid film-goers can definitely tell that Matamata in New Zealand was where the Hobbiton scenes in Lord of the Rings were filmed. Book a guided tour around the Hobbiton Set to explore the 44 unique hobbit holes including Bilbo’s home!

Should you desire to get a little closer to nature, trek the Wairere Falls Walking trail and be mesmerised by the majestic Wairere Falls, the highest waterfall in New Zealand’s North Island.

10. Maya Bay, Thailand

Image credit: spotter_nl

For a filming location a little closer to home, head down to the famous Maya Bay on the island of Koh Phi Phi Leh. This pristine, white sandy beach was a scenic backdrop for the 1999 Hollywood film The Beach starring Leonardo DiCaprio and ever since the film’s release, Maya Bay has been a tourist magnet. Unfortunately, Thailand’s National Parks and Wildlife Department has announced that Maya Bay will be closed in June this year due to over-tourism.

Be sure to taste a slice of this paradise before it’s too late! Dive into the deep oceans for a personal encounter with the gorgeous marine wildlife or simply enjoy the stunning views of the picturesque bay.

11. Tibidabo Amusement Park, Spain

Image credit: Richardjo53

Set in the Catalan Capital of Spain in Barcelona, Tibidabo Amusement Park, one of the longest-standing theme parks in the world, was featured in the 2008 romantic drama, Vicky Cristina Barcelona.

Fans would be quick to identify this location as the place where the two couples, Vicky and Doug, and Cristina and Juan Antonio had a fun-filled double date outing. Besides Tibidabo Amusement Park, culture buffs can also visit the incredible architectural splendours of Gaudi and Miro, including the Sagrada Familia, a famous unfinished cathedral by Gaudi and the dazzling ceramic mural by Miro at Terminal 2 in Barcelona’s airport. These places were the primary film locations of Vicky Cristina Barcelona.

12. Neuschwanstein Castle, Germany

Going to Disneyland for an Instagram-worthy shot with the iconic Sleeping Beauty Castle is too mainstream! Why not snap a picture with the original late 19th-century castle in Germany that inspired the enchanting Disney castle? Commissioned by King Ludwig II, the castle contains only 15 rooms and was never built to completion. As such, we recommend that you skip the interior tour.

Although not a filming location, the stunning Neuschwanstein Castle is a must-visit for all Disney fans.

13. Strangford Castle Ward Estate, Northern Ireland

Image credit: Magnus Manske

The Strangford Castle Tower in Northern Ireland is better known to Game of Thrones fans as Winterfell, the seat of House Stark. In reality, the Strangford Castle Ward Estate is much more than just a castle – it contains an eclectic mix of architectural styles and is a must-visit for architecture buffs.

Image credit: Winterfell Tours

For the avid Game of Thrones fan, the Strangford Castle Ward Estate offers a Game of Thrones archery package where you can dress up in a Game of Thrones-esque costume and practise shooting with medieval bows in the recreated movie set of Winterfell. If you are interested to have a Game of Thrones filming site tour around Northern Ireland, check out this comprehensive 2-day itinerary.

14. Tongariro National Park, New Zealand

The stronghold of Lord Sauron in Lord Of The Rings was shot at the rocky slopes of Tongariro National Park in New Zealand. The eerie, desolate landscapes filled with jagged volcanic rock formations make it an ideal setting for the hinterland of Mordor in Lord Of The Rings.

Should you be feeling particularly adventurous, you can scale Mount Ngauruhoe, better known as the fiery Mount Doom in Lord of The Rings. Be prepared to set aside about six hours to scale Mount Ngauruhoe as the mountain is blanketed by soft ash, which makes conquering the hike especially challenging.

15. Triple Falls, USA

Calling all Hunger Games fans! Who recognises this place?

Image credit: Gary Stevens

The Hunger Games movie series was filmed entirely in North Carolina. The Triple Falls in the Dupont National Parks was featured in a few major scenes, such as the scene from the first Hunger Games movie where Katniss finds Peeta alive. Although visitors are not allowed to climb up the rocks at the Triple Falls, a picnic at the Triple Falls would allow visitors ample time to appreciate the gorgeous view.

So which of these locations are you planning to visit? Book with Emirates by 23 Apr 2018 to selected destinations (Melbourne, Paris, Zurich, Frankfurt, Amsterdam, Barcelona, Rome, and Lisbon) and recreate memorable moments from the big screen at film destinations around the world.

About Authors

Yi Shao
Yi Shao

Yi Shao is constantly on the lookout for new adventures, which had led her from the mountains in Salzberg to the bustling night markets of Taiwan. While she is currently in Singapore finishing up her university education, she still seeks out the lesser known places in her hometown before she embarks on her next big adventure.


Serene Chan
Serene Chan

An adventurous daredevil, Serene finds an adrenaline rush from exploring the unknown and off-the-beaten tracks in every country she travels to. She is an advocate of solo travel and enjoys connecting with awesome travellers along the way. On a lazy Sunday, she is either binge-watching Korean and Hong Kong dramas or dancing and singing the day away.


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