Game of Thrones in Ouarzazate
In this post, we’ve explored Game of Thrones locations in Morocco, where significant scenes from the 3rd season were filmed. We’ve covered Essaouira, known as Astapor in the series. Now, let’s discover Ouarzazate, another captivating city that served as the backdrop for a different location in Game of Thrones. With its desert landscapes and ancient architecture, Ouarzazate beautifully represented Yunkai, a pivotal city in Essos. Follow the footsteps of Daenerys Targaryen’s journey to liberate the slaves of Yunkai and get yourself into the rich culture and beauty of Ouarzazate. As fantasy and reality merge, explore the enchanting allure of this Moroccan gem, making it a must-visit for Game of Thrones enthusiasts and adventurers.
What is Game of Thrones in Ouarzazate?
In Game of Thrones, Ouarzazate represents Yunkai, the Yellow City known for its slave-owning practices and situated in the Bay of Slaves. The name’s color reference likely stems from the adobe buildings in Ouarzazate, as this material has been a cornerstone of Berber architecture for centuries. While Ouarzazate itself is not a replica of Yunkai, it serves as a primary inspiration. The city’s unique topography, with its walled structures occupying a hill, distinguishes it and draws parallels to the real-life location used to depict Yunkai: Ait Ben Haddou. Together, these captivating Moroccan locations bring the fictional world of Game of Thrones to life.
Where were scenes from Game of Thrones filmed in Ouarzazate?
In fact, as a fan of the Game of Thrones, I like it so much that it’s my fever series, I am well aware of the cutting-edge special effects and post-production techniques used to bring the fictional world to life. These influences allow modifications to the landscape and architecture, making it not a perfect replica of original sites such as Ouarzazate or Ait Ben Haddou.
However, the resemblance of the Taourirt kasbah’s walls in Ouarzazate to the city walls of Yunkai is undeniable, particularly in key moments like when Daenerys Targaryen is hailed by the slaves in the series’ third season.
Despite this resemblance, Atlas Studios, the largest film studio in Morocco, played a significant role in portraying Yunkai. Located on the outskirts of Ouarzazate, the studios’ extensive sets were used for various shorter shots, efficiently utilizing the actor’s and production team’s time during the filming process. These collaborations between real locations and studio sets contributed to the authenticity and visual grandeur of Yunkai in Game of Thrones.
What can you visit?
For Game of Thrones fans, the settings of Ouarzazate hold a special allure that can be explored up close today. The Taourirt Kasbah, once the residence of the influential Thami El Glaoui, is now open for visits and offers a glimpse of the series’ iconic locations. At Best Morocco Travel, we include visits to this historical site as part of our desert tours.
Additionally, the Atlas Studios, the largest film studios in Morocco, also welcome visitors, providing an opportunity to see behind-the-scenes filmmaking, even if some spaces may be in use for other productions. The Game of Thrones legacy in Ouarzazate is very much alive, attracting travelers from around the world who want to immerse themselves in evocative settings and capture memorable photographs.
If you share this interest, Best Morocco Travel can arrange a tailor-made experience that incorporates these iconic Game of Thrones locations, adding a touch of fantasy to your journey through Morocco’s enchanting landscapes.
How to reach Ouarzazate
To reach Ouarzazate from Marrakech during the Game of Thrones Morocco grand tour, you will need to travel around 200 kilometers one-way. Unfortunately, there are no direct public transport options available. The most common and convenient way is to book a private trip, which allows flexibility and exploration of sights along the route. Private trips may have higher charges, typically around 200£ and then you will visit many cool places on your way trip to Ouarzazate, such as the high Atlas mountains of Tizin Tichka, Berber villages, Ait Ben Haddou Kasbah, and more. Despite the cost, visiting Ouarzazate, with its Game of Thrones connections and stunning landscapes, offers an unforgettable experience for fans of the series.