Malta, Gozo and Comino are the only inhabited islands in the Republic of Malta, famous for its handmade lace, baroque churches and deep-sea diving. This tiny archipelago is home to an impressive nine UNESCO world heritage sites, and draws influences from having been ruled by the Romans, the Argonese and the French among many others, which makes it the perfect harmony of old world cultures. It is this that made it an ideal location for filming the network adaptation of George R. R. Martin’s ‘A song of Ice and Fire,’ otherwise known as medieval fantasy Game of Thrones.
The Azure Window (Daenerys and Drogo’s wedding)
The Azure Window in the island of Gozo is just a short ferry ride from Valletta town. The window was formed when two limestone sea caves collapsed near Dwejra Point and Dwejra bay.
Gozo’s crystal clear waters have 30 metre visibility and incredible coral reefs make it very popular with scuba divers. Game of Thrones fans however, will know it as the stunning backdrop for Daenerys and Drogo’s Wedding in the first episode.
Mdina Gate (King’s Landing Gate)
Mdina, in northern Malta, is a medieval walled town on a hill in the centre of the island. It is commonly called the Silent City. Designed by Girolamo Cassar, it boasts an impressively grandeuse interior and surprisingly ascetic exterior. Mdina Gate will be more widely known by fantasy lovers as King’s Landing Gate, from a scene in the second episode of Game of Thrones, where Catelyn and Ser Rodrik Cassel ride in to King’s Landing to investigate an attack on Bran.
San Anton Palace (The Red Keep)
San Anton Palace, made famous by episode ‘The Red Keep’, can be found in Attard, and is the official residence of Malta’s president. The 16th century architecture, beautiful pale limestone entry, and languishing gardens are filled with sculptures, and it is even home to ducks, swans and a small aviary.
If you find yourself in Valletta for a day, take a boat trip to neighbouring Fort St Angelo, located in Medevil town Birgu. Right in the heart of the Great Harbour, ST Angelo was also used when filming scenes in the Red Keep Dungeon, where Arya chases a cat before overhearing a royal secret, integral to the plot.
By day, visitors to Valletta can soak up some Maltese culture, by visiting St Johns Co Cathedral built by the Knights of Malta between 1573 and 1578 and by evening, stroll along the outside of Valletta’s famous city walls and enjoy a spectacular sunrise over the Grand Harbour.
Image by Vicburton used under the Creative Commons license
Image by DoNotLick used under the Creative Commons license
Image by passionfleur used under the Creative Commons license
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