Game of Thrones, the bloodiest, sexiest, dragoniest show to ever hit our premium channels, may be fantastical, but the dramatic sets are almost entirely real. Location scouts wandered all over Europe looking for real places that could bring George R.R. Martin's epic to life. They found them in both well-known and obscure areas of the U.K, Scotland, and Mediterranean coast. Here's where Tyrion, Jon Snow, and Hodor have been hanging out.
Prior to being cast as Winterfell in Game of Thrones, Scotland's Doune Castle was best known from the scene at the beginning of Monty Python and the Holy Grail when French soldiers hurled insults at English knights from its high parapets. It's no small wonder that the atmospheric spot has attracted filmmakers. The castle sits amid dark moors north of Glasgow and has served, since its construction in the 13th century, as both a royal retreat and a jail. Unlike similar castles, Doune's walls are irregular, which makes the place look more forbidding and even older than it actually is. The place has seen a lot of fake and real blood spilled.
More information: Doune Castle sits along one of Scotland's best driving roads, making it a great day trip from Edinburgh.
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