By Dominic Moreno
PHOENIX – HBO is embarking on a massive project to turn its Game of Thrones sets in Northern Ireland into real life tourist attractions.
The collection of Game of Thrones landmarks will not be fully open to the public until next year. The news comes as the eighth and final season of the network mainstay is set to premiere in early 2019.
Locations slated to be a part of the Northern Ireland theme park include Kings Landing, Castle Black and the famed Winterfell. Fans might even get the chance to take a tour of Linen Mill Studios, just south of the capital city of Belfast.
“HBO is thrilled to celebrate the work of the Game of Thrones creative team and crew by preserving these locations and inviting fans to visit Northern Ireland and explore Westeros in person,” said Jeff Peters, HBO’s Vice President of Licensing and Retail.
“We look forward to opening the gates and sharing the excitement of stepping inside these amazing sets with Game of Thrones fans from around the world. The opportunity to celebrate Northern Ireland’s pivotal role in the life and legacy of the show and share its culture, beauty and warmth is also a huge inspiration behind these legacy projects.”
The Northern Ireland tourism industry has also been buzzing with excitement from the news, with the CEO of Tourism NI, John McGrillen, releasing a statement in response to the project’s announcement.
“We couldn’t be more excited about the Game of Thrones Legacy project coming to Northern Ireland. While fans have seen the stunning landscapes, coastlines and mountains in the series, we are thrilled they will now have the opportunity to fully experience the charm of Northern Ireland and immerse themselves in to the world of Westeros. The Game of Thrones Legacy project will be a game changer for Northern Ireland on a global tourism level. We very much welcome this exciting announcement by HBO and look forward to attracting many more visitors to our beautiful country as a result.”