Where does the time go? This time last year I wrote my very first post for Geekocracy. I have this uncontrollable urge to have all of my writings and posts in one place, my blog (so it kind of becomes a portfolio and I have a copy just in case) but so I don't step on the toes of those I wrote for I think a year is a fair amount of time for a bit of a breather. Without further hesitation I'll share with you a piece I wrote that was first featured on the 1st September 2014 over on Geekocracy
Summer holidays are behind us now, but it is never too early to think about where you want to jet off to next. It’s such a daunting thing to decide; where will I visit? What will I do there? Hold on to your sunhats friend, here are five geeky film set destinations you won’t want to miss!
Hobbiton is a bit of an obvious one, I know, but when you’re a big Lord of The Rings and The Hobbit fan it is hard to resist a visit to the quiet hills of The Shire in Matamata, NZ where it is “a permanent attraction complete with hobbit holes, gardens, bridge, Mill and The Green Dragon™ Inn” (Hobbiton Tours). The Green Dragon Inn is in working order and your scenic tour of Hobbiton ends in a complimentary refreshment. If you are ever down there it is definitely worth checking out because it is the actual Shire film set.
“This, my friend, is a pint”“It comes in pints? I’m getting one” (Source)
Star Wars fans will want to get out to Tunisia to recreate some memorable Tatooine scenes; bring your Jawa cloaks and Tusken Raider masks because we are going to have ourselves a fun day in the desert nabbing droids and selling them. If you prefer the simple life you can always go and farm moisture at The Hotel Sidi Dress which may be more hotel than film set but comes with a Star Wars inspired menu.
I’m sure there are other activities and things to see in Tunisia, but I don’t think it gets much better than dressing up like a Jawa or Tusken Raider.
It’s pretty obvious that if you want an English Harry Potter experience London is the place to go. London has The Millennium Bridge – rebuilt after being destroyed by those death eaters - and at King’s Cross you’ll find Platform 9¾ (obviously, because how else would we get to Hogwarts?). Whilst in London, it is worth a visit to Harry Potter World or The Warner Bros. Studio Tour for an adventure into the making of Harry Potter with film sets, props and costumes.
“Nine and Three-Quarters? Think you’re being funny do ya?” (Source)
It is only natural that you get to Platform 9¾ and catch the Hogwarts Express to Hogwarts, every witch and wizard knows that. However, so you don’t blow your wizarding secret might I suggest traveling via muggle transport and grab a train up to the north of the UK to visit Alnwick Castle. The castle and grounds were featured in the broomstick training scene where Harry will ultimately show his skills and become the youngest quidditch player in a century, according to McGonagall. Alnwick Castle embraces this with some Potter-Inspired activities throughout the year like Broomstick Training (with no age limit!) which is free with admission.
Winter is coming, but Northern Island will be a lot warmer than Winterfell – no furs required. Castle Ward was the filming location for a lot of the exterior scenes in Winterfell during Season 1 of Game of Thrones. The interior of Castle Ward will not match Winterfell unfortunately, but it was shot in Belfast, which is a short hour’s drive away, and you can go on another tour and see all the props and Game of Throne goodies.
So start saving your pennies and go see the world – and then some. Adventure is out there!