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BlogTravel buzzEpic adventure awaits at these spellbinding Dungeons and Dragons filming locations in Northern Ireland and beyond
Travel buzz

Epic adventure awaits at these spellbinding Dungeons and Dragons filming locations in Northern Ireland and beyond

Jul 19, 2023 by The Go Ahead Tours Team

The epic fantasy heist movie, Dungeons and Dragons: Honor Among Thieves, brought the Forgotten Realms and Faerûn to life on screen. Inspired by the lore and rules of a classic Dungeons and Dragons campaign, the movie follows a party of misfit thieves on their quest to retrieve a lost relic and rectify a critical mistake from their past. 

Most of the Dungeons and Dragons movie filming locations are scattered along coastal Northern Ireland, and a few key scenes were shot in England, Ireland, and Iceland. You don’t need to roll a perception check (or even know what that means) to appreciate the majesty of these real-world fantasy landscapes, and you can see many of them when you join us on tour.

We think that movies and television shows inspire some of the best custom travel itineraries. If you and your travel crew are determined to follow closely in the footsteps of Edgin, Holga, Simon, and Doric, create a Customized Tour and retrace the adventurers’ path through the Sword Coast and Neverwinter. Read on to discover some of the epic Dungeons and Dragons filming locations that you can visit.

Glenarm Castle in County Antrim, Northern Ireland

Used to film: the unnamed castle that Edgin’s party raids

The bard, Edgin (Chris Pine), introduces us to his party of misfits in a flashback sequence as he recounts stories of their transgressions. We catch our first glimpse of half-elf sorcerer Simon (Justice Smith) and rogue Forge (Hugh Grant) as they, along with Edgin and his daughter Kira, flee an unnamed castle that they’ve seemingly robbed, pursued by angry riders on horseback. This brief action scene was shot at Glenarm Castle in County Antrim, about a 45-minute drive from Belfast. In fact, many of the Dungeons and Dragons movie filming locations are within an hour’s drive of the capital of Northern Ireland. A trip to Belfast might be the perfect place to begin your DnD locations Customized Tour

If you can’t get enough striking castles with manicured gardens: Visit Powerscourt Estate on our Powerscourt Estate & Gardens excursion or Hillsborough Castle on our Castles of Northern Ireland & Afternoon Tea excursion, both offered on our Grand Tour of Ireland. Both optional activities feature elegant castles surrounded by acres of stately lawns and immaculate gardens. 

Carrickfergus Castle in County Antrim, Northern Ireland

Used to film: Neverwinter Harbor

Carrickfergus Castle was used for the scenes in Neverwinter Harbor when the crew attempts to flee on a stolen boat (thanks in part to a perfectly aimed potato). This Norman castle was built more than 800 years ago and is one of the best-preserved medieval structures in Northern Ireland. If you want to visit Neverwinter without fear of displacer beasts, mimics, or flesh-eating gelatinous cubes, you can visit Carrickfergus Castle during a free afternoon on a tour of Belfast—the castle is less than 30 minutes outside the city. 

If medieval castles are your thing: Visit Bunratty Castle on our Landscapes of Scotland & Ireland tour. Take a guided tour of this 15th-century castle in County Clare and wander through its surrounding “living” village, which features homes and shops recreated and furnished to appear as they would centuries ago.

Hidden Village of Galboly in County Antrim, Northern Ireland

Used to film: Longsaddle, the halfling village

Bradley Cooper has a tiny (see what we did there?) cameo in the Dungeons and Dragons movie as Holga’s ex-husband, Marlamin the halfling. The party stops by Marlamin’s home in the village of Longsaddle, and the former couple has a surprisingly touching exchange. The exterior shots of Longsaddle were filmed at the Hidden Village of Galboly in County Antrim—the village is “hidden” because it’s actually somewhat difficult to find, tucked away in the hills along a coastal road. The town has been abandoned for many years, and many of the cottages are in ruins. Fun fact: The cottage that serves as Marlamin’s house was actually built on the location as a set for the Game of Thrones series. Galboly is less than an hour’s drive from Northern Ireland’s capital city, making it an excellent place to explore during free time on a trip to Belfast.  

If you love to admire authentic examples of traditional rural life: You can see thatched-roof cottages and stacked stone walls on the Aran Islands excursion offered on our Ireland: Traditions of the Emerald Isle tour. Many of the residents of Inis Mór, the largest of the islands, still speak Gaelic, the traditional Celtic language. 

Castle Ward in County Down, Northern Ireland

Used to film: the spot where the party meets Xenk Yandar

On their quest to find the Helm of Disjunction, the party tracks down the Thayan paladin Xenk Yendar (Regé-Jean Page) just as he’s compassionately retrieving a Tabaxi child from the belly of a giant fish. This dockside Dungeons and Dragons filming location is actually Castle Ward in County Down, Northern Ireland, just outside of Belfast. Although it doesn’t get much screen time in this film, Game of Thrones fans may recognize it as the setting for Winterfell. Taking a tour of Castle Ward is one of the best things to do in Northern Ireland, especially if you’re searching for the perfect free-time activity on your trip to Belfast. 

Fun fact: Castle Ward isn’t the only location that Dungeons and Dragons: Honor Among Thieves shared with the Game of Thrones series. Both productions were based in Belfast and filmed in studios and on-location in the area, including Ballintoy Harbor (see below!). 

The Causeway Coast in Northern Ireland

Used to film: the shores of Faerûn

Northern Ireland’s Causeway Coast, which was a key filming location in Dungeons and Dragons: Honor Among Thieves, runs from Belfast to Derry. Many of the movie’s seaside scenes were filmed along this stretch in places like Ballintoy Harbor and Giant’s Causeway. One pivotal scene, shot in Ballintoy Harbor, finds Simon battling with his inner demons and his ancestors as he tries to attune with the Helm of Disjunction. You can visit the Causeway Coast on our A Week in Ireland: Dublin to Belfast tour and join us on our Giant’s Causeway excursion to see why it’s first on our list of mythical places you can visit around the world

Fun fact: Although the Underdark scenes were filmed on set in Belfast, you can see the production design team’s nod to the basalt columns and topography of Giant’s Causeway. Luckily, when you admire the rock formations on our Giant’s Causeway excursion, you won’t have to fend off any undead assassins or pudgy dragons. 

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Titanic Studios in Belfast, Northern Ireland

Used to film: interior shots, the arena, and Neverwinter

Quite a bit of the Dungeons and Dragons filming took place on sound stages at Titanic Studios in Belfast, including the epic final battle. The massive film studio is located on the former shipyard where the Titanic was built and has become a hub for Northern Ireland’s film industry. You’ll have a hard time trying to sneak onto a movie set, but if you join us on a tour of Belfast you’ll pay a visit to the Titanic Belfast Museum to learn all about the infamous ship. The museum is located just a few minutes’ walk from the studio in the same former shipyard! 

Want to step into even more Titanic history? Pay a visit to the Titanic’s last port of call, Cobh Harbor, on a tour of Cork. A visit to this tiny island town is one of our favorite things to do in Cork, Ireland

Dún Briste Sea Stack in County Mayo, Ireland

Used to film: Korinn’s Keep

During his epic (and potentially overblown) appeal for why he and the barbarian Holga (Michelle Rodriguez) should be pardoned, Edgin recounts to the council the events that led to their arrest. In a flashback sequence, we see the party breaking into the Harper Stronghold of Korinn’s Keep in search of the Tablet of Reawakening. Establishing shots of Korinn’s Keep show it as a stacked stone pillar rising from the churning sea. In reality, the location is known as Dún Briste Sea Stack in County Mayo, Ireland, and it’s even more impressive in person than on screen. The freestanding stack of stone and earth rises 150 feet above sea level and was once connected to the mainland. A visit to Dún Briste is an excellent way to spend a free afternoon in County Mayo on our Ireland: The Wild Atlantic Way tour

If you want to discover another natural wonder in Ireland: Pay a visit to the Cliffs of Moher, soaring cliffs that rise 700 feet above the Atlantic Ocean. You may even recognize them from films like The Princess Bride. Getting the chance to visit the stunning Cliffs of Moher is one of the many reasons to love Ireland’s Wild Atlantic Way.

Wells Cathedral in Bath, England

Used to film: the inside of Castle Never

Although many of the Dungeons and Dragons movie filming locations were only used for exterior or establishing shots, we actually got a peek inside England’s Wells Cathedral during some of the scenes set in Castle Never. The scene where Edgin and Holga wait to see Kira after escaping Revel’s End was filmed in the cathedral’s nave, and Lord Neverember’s chamber was filmed in the chapter house. The stunning cathedral is just outside of the city of Bath and visiting is an excellent way to spend some free time on our Grand Tour of Great Britain: Scotland, England & Wales. The best part? You won’t have to wildshape into the form of a fly like Doric, the Tiefling druid, to gain entry—the cathedral is open to the public seven days a week. 

If you want to stand in awe of another soaring cathedral: Step inside St. Patrick’s Cathedral in Dublin on our A Week in Ireland: Dublin, Cork & Galway tour. The more than 800-year-old cathedral is the largest and most impressive church in Ireland. 

Alnwick Castle in Northumberland, England

Used to film: the outside of Castle Never

Many of the Neverwinter scenes were filmed on a set, but several of the exterior shots of Castle Never (another of the classic DnD places) were shot at Alnwick Castle in Northumberland, England. Die-hard film buffs will also recognize the location as Hogwarts from the first two Harry Potter movies. You can take a guided tour of Castle Alnwick and its gardens on our Grand Tour of Great Britain: Scotland, England & Wales and try to recreate Edgin’s hilarious musical distraction scene. 

Fun fact: Alnwick Castle is the second-largest inhabited castle in England (after Windsor Castle) and has been featured in more than 40 movies and television shows. 

Iceland

Used to film: parts of the Sword Coast and Icewind Dale 

The opening of Dungeons and Dragons: Honor Among Thieves finds Edgin and Holga incarcerated and awaiting trial at Revel’s End, a bleak, coastal prison. After escaping the prison, the pair journeys through Icewind Dale and along the Sword Coast in search of Edgin’s daughter, Kira. Although many of the major Dungeons and Dragons movie filming locations were in Ireland and the United Kingdom, several of the film’s early establishing shots were filmed in Iceland, including these classic DnD locations. We see the pair trekking across wild terrain and past an erupting volcano—the real-life Fagradalsfjall volcano, which erupted during filming. If you want to traverse Iceland’s dramatic and bewitching landscapes like Edgin and Holga, join us on our Landscapes of Wild Iceland tour, which even includes a stop at Eyjafjallajökull volcano. 

Fun fact: Many of the DnD places that are depicted in the movie were taken directly from the tabletop game’s lore. Revel’s End, however, was originally created for the movie. However, due to delays caused by the Coronavirus pandemic, an adventure module (a storyline for the game) featuring Revel’s End was launched before the film was released.

Ready to plan your next epic adventure to these Dungeons and Dragons filming locations? Join us on tour!


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