Last Updated on March 10, 2023 by AIFS Abroad
Lights, camera… travel? Famous filming locations around the world offer fans the opportunity to step into their favorite scenes and experience the magic of the movies in real life. In fact, some of the most iconic moments in cinematic history were filmed at places that you can visit right now. So, whether you’re a film buff or simply looking for your next travel destination, join us as we explore some of the most iconic movie and TV locations from around the globe!
Let’s roll out the red carpet for these world-famous filming locations:
Matamata, New Zealand
Many of the scenes from Peter Jackson’s The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit trilogies were filmed in New Zealand. It’s not surprising when you think about it – the rolling green hills provided the perfect filming location for The Shire. Previous AIFS Abroad participants studying in New Zealand have enjoyed walking in Frodo’s footsteps in Matamata and visiting filming locations around Wellington like Hobbiton Woods, seen above.
Dubrovnik was used as the main filming location for most of the King’s Landing scenes in HBO’s Game of Thrones. As a bonus, those studying abroad in central European cities like Budapest or Prague can easily take a weekend trip and see the dramatic landscapes for themselves!
HBO’s famous series Game of Thrones used filming locations in various countries, including Spain. The Real Alcázar in Seville was the setting for House Martell’s Dorne Palace. The intricate architecture and beautifully landscaped gardens created the perfect backdrop for the show’s dramatic scenes. Fun fact: the Real Alcázar is the oldest royal palace in Europe that is still in use! You can explore more stunning Andalusian architecture when you study abroad in Seville.
This Austrian city is famous for being the main filming location of The Sound of Music – and the former home of the real von Trapp family! We have many alumni who have studied abroad in Salzburg and loved visiting iconic places like Nonnberg Abbey (used for the exterior shots of the Abbey in the film) and the Pegasus fountain at the Mirabell Palace and Gardens.
New York City, USA
The building at 90 Bedford Street in Manhattan’s Greenwich Village was used for exterior shots of the iconic Friends apartment where Monica, Rachel, Chandler and Joey live for most of the series. Fans from all over the world still visit this famous filming location to snap sidewalk selfies.
If it hasn’t been your day, your week, your month or even your year(😉), why not consider an AIFS Abroad internship program in New York City? Boost your professional and personal skills while soaking up all that the Big Apple has to offer!
Many scenes from the Netflix series Emily in Paris were filmed in Place de l’Estrapade, a picturesque square located in the 5th arrondissement. Here you can find the building used as Emily and Gabriel’s apartment in the series, as well as Emily’s favorite bakery. The filming location for Gabriel’s restaurant is also in the square (it’s a Terra Nera Italian restaurant in real life).
While Emily in Paris isn’t necessarily the most accurate portrayal of Parisian culture, we can tell you that studying or interning abroad in Paris is a fantastic way to learn about what life in France is really like.
Despite the story mostly taking place in America, The Queen’s Gambit was filmed extensively in Germany. Netflix used Berlin’s largest ballroom, The Palais am Messe-Funkturm, as the backdrop for Beth’s U.S. Open scenes. Of course, the venue needed to be modified a bit to give the illusion that it was in Las Vegas. Production placed palm trees at the entrance to the ballroom, and another building was added digitally. The mini-series also filmed the 1968 Moscow Masters Chess Tournament scenes in the Bärensaal at Altes Stadthaus in Berlin.
P.S. We highly recommend doing a study abroad or internship program in Germany if you really want to explore Berlin’s cityscape and opportunities for fun (although we can’t guarantee you’ll become a chess master).
Does King’s Cross Station look familiar? That’s because you’ve probably seen it on the big screen before! King’s Cross Station is one of London’s most famous filming locations. Movies including several of the Harry Potter films, Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation, Wonder Woman and The Imitation Game used the British Tube station to film some scenes. Those who have participated in a study abroad or internship program in London with AIFS in the past have also visited Platform 9 ¾ (based on the fictional train platform to Hogwarts in Harry Potter).
That’s a wrap! We hope these famous filming locations inspired you to embark on your own adventure and explore the world.
You may want to consider studying or interning abroad for a truly transformative experience that can expand your horizons and teach you valuable skills. Plus, it’s a great opportunity to see where they filmed your favorite scenes!