7 filming locations that might surprise you

Movies have a way of taking us on incredible journeys, transporting us from our seats to magical places we may never have dreamed of visiting. Whether it’s embarking on an international adventure like James Bond or living in a mysterious Transylvanian forest like Netflix’s Wednesday, films have the power to capture our imagination and fuel our wanderlust. Join us as we take you on a thrilling journey to some of Europe’s most cinematic destinations. So grab some popcorn, sit back, and get ready for an epic adventure!

Wednesday, Transylvania, Romania

Fans of the hit Netflix TV show Wednesday will be delighted to know that you can explore many of the series filming locations in Romania! The series is set in the fictional town of Nevermore and was primarily filmed on location in Romania, including Transylvania. Known for its stunning landscapes, medieval castles, and association with vampires and other creatures of folklore, Transylvania is the perfect setting for the show inspired by the spooky Addams Family! The filmmakers took advantage of the region’s unique landscapes and architecture to create a visually stunning and immersive world that will transport viewers to a world of darkness, magic, and mystery. Go deep into the heart of Transylvania on one of our many Romanian Experiences to see firsthand the beauty of this region!

Gladiator, Ait Ben Haddou, Morocco

Due to its unique appearance, historical significance, and stunning red desert landscape, Ait Benhaddou, a tiny town in southwestern Morocco, has been featured in a number of films and television shows, including Gladiator, Lawrence of Arabia, The Mummy, and Game of Thrones. In Gladiator, the city was used as a filming location for the fictional city of Zucchabar, where the protagonist Maximus (played by Russell Crowe) first meets the slave trader Proximo (played by Oliver Reed). Ait Benhaddou is a fortified city or ksar near the city of Ouarzazate. It is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and is known for its stunning examples of earthen architecture, particularly its kasbahs, which are fortified houses or palaces. Ait Benhaddou is a popular tourist destination in Morocco, attracting visitors interested in its history, architecture, and cultural significance. Visitors can explore the city’s narrow streets, see the kasbahs and other buildings up close, and learn about the traditional way of life in this part of Morocco. Visit this stunning location on our 7-night Sahara Desert experience!

Argo, Istanbul, Turkey

While the film Argo is primarily set in Iran, much of the movie was actually filmed in various locations in Turkey, including Istanbul. Istanbul is a major city in Turkey that straddles Europe and Asia, and it is known for its rich history, stunning architecture, and unique cultural blend. In Argo, Istanbul was used to portray the streets of Tehran, Iran, during the 1979 hostage crisis. Many of the film’s key scenes, including the chaotic airport scenes and the tense chase through the narrow streets of Tehran, were actually filmed in and around Istanbul. The filmmakers chose Istanbul for its similarity in architecture and urban design to Tehran, which helped to create a convincing sense of place for the film. Additionally, the city’s vibrant energy and unique mix of cultures and influences added a sense of authenticity and richness to the film’s portrayal of the Middle East. Overall, Istanbul played an essential role in helping to bring the world of Argo to life on the big screen. The city’s rich history and culture provided the perfect backdrop for the film’s themes of political intrigue, espionage, and the complex relationship between Iran and the United States. Join us on a 4-night Hot Air Balloon experience with a stop-off in the stunning city of Istanbul!

Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, Petra, Jordan

Known for its stunning architecture and unique rock formations, the ancient city of Petra has become a world-renowned tourist attraction after appearing in Indiana Jones and The Last Crusade in 1989. In the film, Petra, one of the seven wonders of the world and a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is portrayed as the location of the fictional “Canyon of the Crescent Moon”, which leads to the Holy Grail. The iconic scene where Indiana Jones (played by Harrison Ford) rides through the narrow passage between towering cliffs and emerges to see the ancient city of Petra in front of him was filmed on location in Petra. The filmmakers used Petra’s unique rock formations and ancient buildings to create a sense of mystery and awe, which helped to make the scene and the film as a whole so memorable. Today, visitors to Petra can see the same buildings and rock formations that were featured in the movie and experience the same sense of wonder and awe that Indiana Jones did on the big screen!

Mad Max: Fury Road, Namib Desert, Namibia

The stark, dramatic dunes of Namibia replaced Australia in the filming of the fourth instalment of Mad Max after the first three were shot more locally. Originally planned to be shot in Broken Hill, unusual rainfall transformed the barren landscape into an oddly lush backdrop, which wasn’t ideal for the post-apocalyptic wasteland they were going for. The filmmakers chose the Namib Desert for its otherworldly landscapes and vast, open spaces, which helped to create the sense of a desolate, post-apocalyptic world. Many of the film’s most memorable scenes, including the car chases and battles, were filmed in the desert, often using practical effects and stunts rather than relying solely on computer-generated imagery (CGI). The Namib Desert provided the perfect backdrop for the film’s themes of survival, redemption, and the struggle for power in a harsh, unforgiving world. The filmmakers took advantage of the desert’s unique geological features, such as towering sand dunes and rugged canyons, to create a visually stunning and immersive film that has become a modern classic of the action genre. Today, visitors to Namibia can visit many of the locations used in the film and experience the same sense of awe and wonder that the filmmakers did when they first arrived in the Namib Desert to shoot Mad Max: Fury Road.

Game of Thrones, Dubrovnik, Croatia

In Game of Thrones, Dubrovnik was used to film many of the show’s most iconic scenes, including the infamous “Walk of Shame” sequence in which Cersei Lannister walks through the city streets while being humiliated by the people of King’s Landing. Other notable locations in Dubrovnik used in the show include Fort Lovrijenac, which served as the exterior of the Red Keep, and the Jesuit Staircase, which was used for the iconic scene where Cersei watches the destruction of the Sept of Baelor. The filmmakers chose Dubrovnik for its stunning architecture, which provided the perfect backdrop for the series’ medieval world. The city’s well-preserved walls and fortifications, narrow streets, and historic buildings helped to create a sense of authenticity and immersion that helped to make the show a global phenomenon. Today, visitors to Dubrovnik can take Game of Thrones-themed tours that will take them to many of the locations used in the show and provide a behind-the-scenes look at the making of the series. Dubrovnik has become a must-visit destination for fans of the show, and it continues to attract visitors from all over the world who want to experience the magic of Game of Thrones for themselves. Enjoy time in Dubrovnik before embarking on a Mini-Bosnian adventure!

James Bond ‘No Time to Die’, Matera, Italy

Matera, a city in southern Italy, was one of the primary filming locations for the James Bond film “No Time to Die”. The city is known for its unique architecture, including the ancient cave dwellings ” Sassi ” carved into the side of a hill, and has a rich cultural history spanning thousands of years, which the filmmakers used to create a sense of depth and authenticity for the film. The city’s ancient cave dwellings, churches, and palaces provided a rich tapestry of locations and settings that helped to bring the film’s story to life. The city’s rugged terrain and dramatic vistas provided the perfect backdrop for high-speed car chases, intense action scenes, and breathtaking aerial shots. Visit Matera on our 4-night Dolce Vita experience, we can’t guarantee you’ll feel as cool as 007 but we can guarantee a good time!

Did any of these movie locations surprise you? If any of the destinations mentioned above have sparked your interest please get in touch!

Written by Lucy Kaufmann