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Jon Snow Speaks

By now, most of us have seen or at least heard of the American HBO smash-hit series Game of Thrones. The popularity of Game of Thrones has caused it to span the globe, and people all over the world are anxiously awaiting the next season. There have been five seasons released to date. The television show is adapted from the best-selling book series written by George R. R. Martin, and HBO has truly brought the mystical, medieval realm to light. Although the book universe and the universe onscreen may be a little bit different at times, pop culture definitely holds a place for Game of Thrones: and we just can’t seem to get enough!

If you’ve been watching the show up through the latest season, you know that there was quite a cliffhanger placed that dealt with Kit Harington’s beloved character, Jon Snow. Kit Harington recently came to speak about it himself, and you can decide what you think with your own insight!

Kit Harington noted very clearly that Jon Snow is in fact “dead”: but that shouldn’t discourage anyone from thinking that they won’t finally see him again when the latest series is released! Harington hints at supernatural themes that might keep Snow in the fold throughout the rest of the show somehow, but all we can do is wait and be patient!  Harington also urged fans of the show to hang tight and make sure to tune into the upcoming season when it comes out. This is the only way we can expect to get any of the concrete answers we might be after!

If you’ve been wondering what Harington has been up to otherwise, he’s busy promoting his upcoming theater show openings and working on feature films! Even if Kit’s comments get you down, diehard fans of the show are bound to stick around until the gory end: at this point in the show, there have already been quite a few deaths that were quite unnecessary.  Nonetheless, the next season is bound to give us more of the action and treachery we signed up for!

Although it seems like a world away, we will be getting the next season of Game of Thrones before we realize it! April 24th is the official release date at its usual 9pm slot. Sky Atlantic will premiere the first episode the same time as HBO, which will be 2am in the UK. In the meanwhile, you could always binge watch your favorite episodes or seasons, or even plan a viewing party for the upcoming release! Why not plan a trip to Ireland and come on tour with us. Join us as we walk around Winterfell and see over 10 locations from all of the series. There’s a lot you can to do to get your Game of Thrones fix while you wait!

Click here to book a Game of Thrones Tour with us.

The Castles of Downton Abbey

Downton Abbey operates in a land of fiction—fictional characters and fictional settings—but what if I told you that you could visit the castles of Downton Abbey? They may not be called Downton Abbey or Brancaster Castle, but many of the shooting locations include both the interior and exterior of real castles that you can visit.

Downton Abbey

Highclere Castle poses as Downton Abbey, and is the main attraction you’re interested in visiting, surely. Both interior and exterior are used in the show, and you can get a pretty good sense of the place in the first episode with the oner—a camera technique that takes us through multiple rooms all in one shot. Highclere Castle had been home to the 5th Earl of Carnarvon (who discovered the tomb of Tutankhamun) and his wife Lady Almina in the early 1900s. When WWI broke out, Lady Almina worked in the hospital where she saved lives. Later, Lady Catherine married Lord Porchester (aka Porchey), the 5th Earl’s son. Lady Catherine helped save the castle from being sold when they owed money, being liable for the Earl’s death. The castle is located in Newbury, Berkshire, to the southwest of London, toward Bristol. After being closed for the winter, they are open again for Valentine’s Day! You can visit the castle—both the grounds and the interior—with Brit Movie Tours’ Downton Abbey Village Tour of Locations.

York Prison

Lincoln Castle actually did have a prison. It didn’t contain Mr. Bates when he was locked away for the murder of his former wife like in the show, but it was intended to be a revolutionary Victorian prison where everyone would get their own cell so that prisoners could find their own moral compass without the bad influences of cellmates. However, over-crowding took priority and it was shut down 30 years later. The castle, used as York Prison in Downton Abbey, was built by William the Conqueror nearly a millennium ago. The castle is currently open for touring. I recommend seeing the magna carta that resides here in their vault, one of only four surviving documents! In 1141, the castle was known as the “Joust of Lincoln” during a war between King Stephen and his cousin Matilda. When Stephen was captured by Matilda’s men, Stephen’s kingdom captured Matilda’s half brother, so they had a trade off and Stephen was returned to the throne. Wow, the family dynamics of Downton Abbey sure aren’t far off from the real thing!

Brancaster Castle

July through August 2014, the Downton Abbey team settled into Alnwick Castle, which was used as Brancaster Castle, where the Christmas special was shot (not to mention Harry Potter). You remember, Stowell’s scandal upturned the lives of the Crawleys for one devastating holiday season. The castle is located in Northumberland, and they recently held a Downton Abbey photo and prop exhibition there, but it is closed now for winter. Check back in March to book your tour or even your wedding!

Duneagle Castle

In the 2012 Christmas special, Inveraray Castle was used extensively as Duneagle Castle, the Scottish home of Lord Flintshire. The characters dine in the State Dining room, have a picnic overlooking the Dhu Loch, walk the gardens, visit the Armoury Hall, and more. The castle was built from 1746 to 1789 as a home for the Campbell family in Argyll and Bute, Scotland. It’s known for its hunting grounds. In fact, the Isle of Tiree has the Guinness record for amount of snipe shot with one barrel. This castle is also closed for tours until March 25th.

Sources: Highclere Castle website, Lincoln Castle website, Alnwick Castle website, Inveraray Castle website, Wayfair blog

Jaime Pond is the editor of Anglonerd.com.

National Television Awards 2016 – Who We Think Should Win

Each year everyone here at Brit Movie Tours like to watch the National Television Awards.  We like to try and guess who we think deserves to win.  The show is filmed live from the O2 in London and will be on ITV tonight at 7.30pm.

The nominees for Best Drama are Broadchurch, Casualty, Doctor Who and Downton Abbey.  We think the winner will be the juggernaut that is Downton Abbey.  We believe they deserve the award again especially after the triumphant Christmas Day special.  The happy endings all round which left leaving fans content was the perfect send-off for Downton.  We will miss you Downton.  Any chance of a follow up film Mr Fellowes?

Poldark is in the running for Best New Drama along with Doctor Foster, Humans and Ordinary Lies.  We are all backing Poldark and with it winning the Best New Drama at the TV Choice awards, we think it stands a good chance of picking up the NTA tonight.  We did all enjoy Ordinary Lies and Doctor Foster so we would be more than happy if either of those picked up the award.

The nominees for Best Comedy are Benidorm, Birds of a Feather, Not Going Out and Peter Kay’s Car Share. Surprising Mrs Brown’s Boys is not a nominee this year, but fans will be pleased to hear that Brendan O’Carroll is working on new material with the BBC. With the absence of Mrs Browns Boys we think that Peter Kays’s Car share or Benidorm should pick up the award.

We think Strictly Come Dancing is bound to win the Best Talent Show this year if the ratings are anything to go by. We all enjoyed last years show and not surprised the the bit below par  X Factor was seriously thrashed by Strictly in the ratings war.  And thanks to the controversy surrounding the doggy deception in Britain’s got talent last year we don’t think they stand a chance. Sorry Mr Cowell, your TV reign couldn’t last forever.

Bear Grylls: Mission Survive, The Apprentice, The Great British Bake Off and MasterChef are all up for the Best Challenge Show.  We put our money on Bake Off winning.  It was the most watched programme of 2015 and the winner Nadiya Hussain is baking the official NTA cake. We all loved the show and thought Nadiya was a deserved winner.

Best TV Presenter nominees are Ant & Dec, Graham Norton, Rylan Clark-Neal and Mel & Sue.  We have our bets on Ant & Dec again which if they win would make it 15 years in a row!  However if they don’t win it then Mel & Sue would make great winners.  Their charming and funny presenting has helped make the Bake Off the success it is today.  We are pleased Rylan Clark has been nominated as he has come a long way since his days on the X Factor.  Ant & Dec are the kings in this field and we can’t see anyone taking their crown.

I’m a Celebrity Get Me Out of Here we think is the Best Entertainment Programme.  Yes there was the controversial eating spider issue, but putting that aside it has to beat Celebrity Juice, Ant & Dec’s Saturday Night Takeaway and The Graham Norton Show.

Best Factual Entertainment show nominees are DIY SOS: the Big Build, Gogglebox, Paul O’Grady: For the Love of Dogs and Top Gear. We think Top Gear should win with Gogglebox being a close runner up. It would be a nice send off for the Top Gear team after many successful years on the show.

We have our fingers crossed that Game of Thrones takes the Best International Show. We are all serious fans of the show here at BMT but we also love The Big Bang Theory so won’t be disheartened if they pip GOT to the post. Orange is the New Black is also up for the award and some of our team love that show.  But the overall consensus is that Game of thrones is best and should win.

If you want to vote you can head over to the NTA website here and everyone who votes will receive a free 30 day trial of the Now TV Entertainment Pass.  We have all voted so now all that’s left is to tune in, enjoy and see who has won.

Game of Thrones Locations Northern Ireland

Game of Thrones is getting a bit of a cult following lately which is helping the tourism of Northern Ireland. The popular HBO television series based on a sequence of fantasy novels by George R.R. Martin was primarily filmed in Northern Ireland and people are heading over to there to stand in the footsteps of their favourite characters.

Northern Ireland is the perfect location to film GOT as the landscape is perfect for its medieval look and feel, also Ireland is one of the places of origin for Celtic culture so it is quite a fitting location. There are lots of areas in Northern Island which haven’t been developed on so there are plenty of rolling hills and green scenery which make a perfect back drop to many of the scenes.

All of the internal Game of Thrones scenes such as the Throne Room and Sept of Baelor were filmed in the Titanic studios in Belfast. Titanic Studios is one of largest film studios in Europe and with a huge £14 million expansion it looks set to become the Hollywood of Europe. Many of the external locations were filmed in Northern Ireland.  Northern Ireland has 8 areas of outstanding natural beauty and with the forests, mountains and moorlands and plenty of castles; it’s not hard to see why they chose to film a lot of Game of Thrones in Northern Ireland.

Below are some of the main locations used for filming many of the iconic scenes and where you can visit on our Game of Thrones tour of Ireland.

Winterfell
Castle Ward, County Down

Winterfell filming location

Castle Ward in Strangford County Down was used as the backdrop to create Winterfell and the Stark family stronghold. The tower house, which was built as a defensive structure in the estate’s farmyard, was used as the castles exterior for Winterfell. Castle Ward is an 18th century National Trust Property and open to the public. Countryfile magazine named it as one of Britain’s best filming locations to visit so it is well worth a visit

Castle Black
Magheramorne Quarry , County Antrim

Magheramorne quarry

The disused  Magheramorne quarry in County Antrim was used to recreate Castle Black, home to the Night’s Watch. A set was built complete with the gates of Castle Black and the rickety wooden lift that takes the Nightswatch to the top of the wall. The location was also used to recreate the fishing village Hardhome.

The Haunted Forest
Tollymore Forest Park, County Down,

The Haunted Forest Filming Location Tollymore Forest Park County Down

The Haunted Forest (woodland area located north of the Wall) was actually Tollymore Forest Park in County Down. This was the location used when Ned Stark and his boys came across the stag and direwolf puppies. The location was also used in the scene where one of the Nights’s watch rides through the snowy forest and see the dismembered wildling bodies.

Dragonstone
Downhill Strand beach, County Londonderry

Dragon stone filming location - Downhill Stand Beach

Downhill Strand beach in County Londonderry was used for the exterior beach scenes of Dragonstone Island. This is where Melisandre and Stannis Baratheon burn the statues of the Seven in the Season 2 and in Season 3 Davos sends Gendry away on a rowing boat.

The Stormlands
Larrybane, County Antrim

The Stormlands filming location

The Stormlands were filmed in Larrybane, County Antrim. Larrybane was the location used in Season 2 for Renly Baratheon’s camp and where Catelyn Stark agrees a treaty with Renley on behalf of her son Rob. House Baratheon is located in the Stormlands. Cushendun Caves were used as a backdrop when Davos Seaworth lands Melisandre ashore and witnesses her giving birth to the shadow baby.

Dothraki Grasslands
Shillanavogy Valley, County Antrim

Shillanavogy-Valley-County-Antrim

The Dothraki grasslands where Daenerys and Drogo got married were filmed in the Shillanavogy Valley, beneath Slemish Mountain in County Antrim. The entrance to Vaes Dothrak the only city of the Dothraki people was filmed below the stunning Mourne Mountains in County Down.

Kings Road
Armony, County Antrim

kings road filming location

The Dark Hedges near Armony, County Antrim became the Kingsroad, where Arya disguised herself as a boy to avoid capture and travels from King’s Landing to The Nights Watch. This row of serpentine beech trees which form a tunnel over the lane is one of the most photographed natural phenomena in Northern Island. The trees were planted back in the 18th century and the road is reported to be haunted by a spectral ‘Grey Lady’ who is known to appear at dusk. The scene has been painted by many artists and it is a favourite location for tourists and wedding photographers.

Pyke & The Iron Islands
Ballintoy Harbour, County Antrim

Pyke & The Iron Islands filming location

Ballintoy Harbour in County Antrim was the backdrop and location used for the exterior Pyke shots and as the Iron Islands. Murlough bay was also used the Iron Islands in Season 3 where Theon Greyjoy rides on the horse with his sister Yara. They also used the bay when Davos Seaworth becomes shipwrecked after the battle of Blackwater Bay.

Robb Starks Camp
Audley’s Castle, Strangford Lough

Audleys-Castle-Strangford-Lough

The location for Robb Starks Camp was filmed at Audley’s Field which is close to the shore of Strangford Lough which is where Jamie was captured and then released.  It is also the location used when he first meets Talisa. Audley’s Field was also used for the scene when King Robert Baratheon arrived at Winterfell and later on where Alton Lannister is imprisoned with Jamie.

For die hard fans who can’t wait for series 6 to begin, why not join us and discover the beauty of Northern Ireland and visit Westeros by going on our Game of Thrones Filming Locations tour of Ireland.  It is an 8 hour tour where you get to see over 12 locations from series 1-4.

 

 

 

 

 

There’s more to Downton than Highclere

Downton Abbey Locations Tour of London

While it’s common knowledge that Highclere Castle in Hampshire provides the magnificent backdrop for the series Downton Abbey, London also features heavily in this popular drama. It was the location for the 2013 Christmas special, ‘The London Season’ and has also been used for many meetings, secret trysts and events, especially those of the young Downton ladies, not to mention as the scene of the still unsolved murder of Green, the valet who raped Anna Bates.

Lady Rose’s London

Prior to wild child Lady Rose’s marriage to Atticus Aldridge, son of Lord and Lady Sinderby, Rose MacClare loved to party and have fun in London. We see her presented at Court at Buckingham Palace during the 2013 Christmas special, although for filming purposes, the nearby Lancaster House provided the setting for the debutantes’ ball. We’re also introduced to a number of London hotspots as we follow Rose’s night time adventures in the jazz clubs of the twenties and her secret assignations with Jack Ross, the black jazz singer. The famous Savile Club in Mayfair was used for the interior shots, and even to this day, women aren’t allowed to be members there, although they are allowed to visit with their husband or other male members.

Rose was also seen at her cousin’s bachelorette party at one of London’s oldest restaurants, Rules, a former oyster bar located close to Covent Garden. What’s more, London was used as the location for a tea dance attended by Rose which, in the series, took place in the Jubilee Dance Hall in York. In fact, the scene was filmed in Hoxton Hall, a former East End music hall, which has donned many guises since the Victorian period, including a gospel hall, an air raid shelter and a wedding venue.

Lady Edith’s London

London was the venue for Lady Edith’s escapades, including her ill fated, whirlwind romance with married magazine editor, Michael Gregson. They are shown meeting at King’s Cross Station, although these scenes were filmed at St. Pancras, and proved a little difficult to get right due to the constant noise in the station. If you take a look at the meeting, you’ll see that Edith stays pretty much tight lipped until they actually leave the station, on account of the background noise.

The famous Criterion Bar and Restaurant on Piccadilly is also featured in the drama; it’s the place where Edith and Michael first share a kiss, and also the place where Michael announces his plans to go to Germany in order to divorce his wife. Of course, as we know, Michael never returns.

Gregson’s flat is located in a stucco fronted Victorian villa on one of the tree lined streets of popular Notting Hill. Filming for this took place in Chepstow Villas, with the production team having to import furniture and redecorate the house completely to accurately reflect the period.

Lady Rosamund Painswick’s London

The Earl of Grantham’s sister, Lady Rosamund, has one of the most prestigious addresses on one of the grandest and largest squares in London, Belgrave Square. However, the filming for all the internal scenes takes place in West Wycombe Park in Buckinghamshire, while external shots are filmed in Eaton Square.

If you’d like to visit some of these iconic locations and discover some of the secrets of Downton’s London, why not book a place on the latest addition to our Downton Tours, Downton Abbey Locations Tour of London. Starting at St. Pancras Station, you’ll get to see all the places featured in the drama in the company of one of our knowledgeable tour guides.

Win a pair of tickets to THRILLER LIVE!

Thriller LiveWin a pair of tickets to THRILLER LIVE!

Now in its record breaking 7th year, THRILLER LIVE is a spectacular concert created to celebrate the career of the world’s greatest entertainer.

‘QUITE LITERALLY, THRILLING’

The Stage

Already seen by over three million people in over 28 countries, THRILLER LIVE continues to moonwalk around the world, taking you on a visual, audio and electrifying journey through the magic of Michael’s 40 year musical history.

Experience over two hours of non-stop hits from pop to rock, soul to disco in a show that pays homage to Jackson’s legendary live performances and innovative dance moves executed with flair, precision and passion in a show that you will never forget.

Expect your favorite songs delivered by an exceptionally talented cast and band, including: I Want You Back, ABC, Can You Feel It, Off The Wall, The Way You Make Me Feel, Smooth Criminal, Beat It, Billie Jean, Dirty Diana, Bad, Rock With You, They Don’t Care About Us, Dangerous, Heal The World.

LYRIC THEATRE

SHAFTESBURY AVENUE

LONDON W1

www.thrillerlive.com

Box Office: 0844 482 9674

Name the brother of Michael Jackson?

  • Steve
  • Jermaine
  • Jack

Email the correct answer to [email protected] along with your name and phone number. The winner will be picked on Friday 30 January and informed by email or phone on the same day. Entries are strictly limited to one per person.

Terms and conditions apply. Prize is valid Monday-Thursday until 26 February 2015. Subject to availability. Prize is as stated and cannot be transferred or exchanged. No cash alternative will be offered. Photo of previous cast member

Win a family ticket to POTTED SHERLOCK!

Potted SherlockWin a family ticket to POTTED SHERLOCK!

All sixty Sherlock Holmes stories retold in eighty elementary minutes! This delicious romp through the canon of Arthur Conan Doyle is fabulous fun for the whole family.

Double Best Entertainment Olivier Award nominees Dan and Jeff star in the London premiere of their new show, hot on the heels of worldwide hit Potted Potter and festive funhouse Potted Panto.

‘Like Sherlock Holmes himself, cleverness and wit triumphs over a seemingly impossible task.’  The List

‘This is great family entertainment.’  British Theatre Guide

‘Casts the perfect spell over the audience.’ New York Times – Critic’s Pick

‘Gloriously irreverent.’ Time Out London – Critic’s Choice

Vaudeville Theatre

Box Office: 0844 482 9675

www.pottedsherlock.com

8 December 2014 – 11 January 2015

What is the London address of Sherlock Holmes?

  1. 221a Baker St
  2. 21b Baker St
  3. 221b Baker St

Email the correct answer to [email protected] along with your name and phone number. The winner will be picked on Friday 28 November and informed by email or phone on the same day. Entries are strictly limited to one per person.

Terms & conditions apply. Subject to availability. Prize is valid from 8-14 December 2014. Family ticket is comprised of four tickets.

Christmas Gift Experiences – Tour Voucher

gift voucherIt’s that time of the year when thoughts turn to Christmas and what to buy our nearest and dearest. What is becoming more of a trend at the moment is buying unusual gift experiences rather than traditional presents.   We all know ‘it’s the thought that counts’ when it comes to receiving Christmas presents or any other gifts for that matter, but it really does touch your heart when you receive something that is really personal to you and not the norm.

Also as you get older and more Christmas pass you buy, you soon get bored yourself of buying the same old gifts and if honest, get bored of receiving the same.  It is very enjoyable trying to think outside of the box and coming up really good present ideas by thinking about the person and their likes and interests.  Gift experiences a far more fun that another soap set or jumper you will never wear.  Buying Christmas gifts for parents can be tricky even if you ask them what they want. They always say they have everything they need and they don’t need anything. So you get the same perfume, socks chocolate etc.  But I suspect what they really would want, if they were honest, would be quality time with you or their friends.  Experience gifts or day out type presents give just this.  They give you something to look forward to and an experience to remember forever.

Here at Brit Movie Tours we offer Gift Tour Vouchers which can be used towards any of our tours. If you are struggling to think of ideas for a gifts for someone this Christmas, maybe this is the solution.   Kids are going to just love the new Paddington film which is coming out on the 28th of this month here in the UK and I for one cannot wait.  I loved Paddington Bear as a child and it will be great to see him on the big screen with the help of CGI.   Our new Paddington Tour London is launching in Easter of 2015 so vouchers towards this tour might be a great idea for new or old fans of Paddington this Christmas.

Fans of Sherlock Holmes will love the BBC Sherlock locations tour where for 3 ½ hour you and a small group are driven around London in a mini coach visiting filming locations including 221b Baker St, Speedys Café, St Barts Hospital and much more. Private tours can also be arranged.

Game of Thrones has been a huge hit and Game of Thrones gifts are highly sought after.  Our gift tour vouchers would make an excellent give for a serious Game of Thrones fan.  Harry Potter fans will absolutely love our Harry Potter Tour London and would make brilliant surprice for any aged Harry Potter fan.

Gift tours are a great idea if you want to give an unusual gift to your friend of loved one.  If you know that you would be going on the tour with them you also get the added bonus of knowing you also will benefit from the gift.  Tour gifts make excellent gifts for couples as well as gift experiences for two friends.

Take a look at our gift tour voucher page and remember if you are not sure which vouchers to buy you can buy a Brit Movie Tours voucher which can be redeemed against any of our tours.

 

Readers verra much enjoy Outlander onscreen

outlandertourlocationAll summer, millions of fans eagerly awaited Outlander’s coming to life onscreen. The first episode, “Sassenach”, does not disappoint readers of the beloved books. Excitement has surrounded the actors portraying Jamie, Claire, and Frank. After seeing them in action, most agree the roles are well-cast and represent the characters readers have known for years.

The eighteenth century has seen nothing like Claire: feisty, intelligent, and sexy. Hours after Claire falls back in time, she takes charge of her Scottish captors and demonstrates the correct way to shove Jamie’s dislocated shoulder back into place. Later, she calls Jamie a “goddamn bloody bastard” as she repairs a gunshot wound he tried to hide. Jamie is in awe, and his clansmen are astounded at the language from a woman, telling her that her husband should tan her hide. Jamie responds to her spirit with humor, thanks her for repairing his wounds, and dubs her Sassenach.

In the twentieth century, Claire displays that spunk with her husband, Frank. Recent historical dramas such as The Tudors or Games of Thrones portray men as the ones in charge, particularly when it comes to sex. This is where Outlander is different: Claire initiates the sex. A progressive idea in the 1940’s, and not at all typical in the eighteenth century, but a theme that is carried by the author in the novels. We can hope producers will encourage strong, feisty women in the characters of Geillis Duncan and Jenny Murray.

The time travel element makes Outlander a mash up of historical drama, romance, and fantasy. Readers would have been insulted by a cheesy image of Claire’s body spinning through black space. The process of falling through time had to be realistic. The scene begins with Claire picking flowers near the stones at Craigh na Dun. The sound of the wind distorts and then mingles with voices. Claire looks up, touches the stone, and we cut to her narration. She describes a memory of a car accident where she felt the sensation of falling at high speed. Then, Claire is lying on the ground where she was before she touched the stone. She stands up and heads back to the car, but it isn’t there. The road isn’t there. She goes back to the woods and walks for a bit before she hears a gunshot. Confused, she thinks she’s stumbled upon a battle re-enactment until she sees real bullets flying. Claire is now running blindly through the woods to the tune of lively bagpipes and drums. The music adds humor to her peril because you know she’s thinking, “Seriously? What is this happening to me?” She comes to a stream and there is Black Jack Randall, who looks like Frank. She hesitates long enough for him to attempt to rape her before a filthy Scottish soldier comes to her rescue. It doesn’t take her long to figure out she’s not in the same world anymore. Her Scottish savior reeks too much for her predicament to be a dream.

Claire narrates through most of the episode. This could become annoying if continued in every episode, but for a viewer who hasn’t read the books, Claire’s explanation fills in the missing gaps.

The Highland scenery is as swoon-worthy as the characters. Outlander contains sweeping images of the Scottish Highlands, and old castles and ruins are featured. The producers did a believable job of contrasting the past and the future versions of the same locations. A great example is Cocknammon Rock, a series of tall cliffs shaped like a rooster tail jutting up into the sky. Claire first sees them while riding in a car with Frank. He describes them as a prime spot for British soldiers to hide and ambush Scotsmen. The next time we see Cocknammon Rock, Claire is riding a horse with Jamie. The paved road has been replaced by rocky, wooded terrain, yet Claire recognizes the landmark and informs her Scottish captors of possible British Dragoons hiding. There is similar contrast between the centuries with Castle Leoch: an empty field of broken tractors compared to a busy dooryard swarming with livestock and Scottish clansmen.

Outlander can only get better from here: more scenery, more characters, and more Jamie and Claire.

The scenery is absolutely stunning and with our local guide who is a fan of both the books & TV series and former member of the Scottish BAFTA, will discuss information from the Outlander TV series, show you how the books and reality differ and recall incredible tales of legend and local history that could come right out of the books.

Head over to our Outlander Tour page to get details about our new Outlander Tour which takes you to all the main TV filming locations sites..

 

Outlandish Excitement over TV and Tours

Outlander TourWhat if the future was your past? Often, past events leave clues to the future, but fans of the Outlander series take this idea to heart. The seven, genre-spanning, New York Times Bestselling novels are best described as time-travel historical romance. The unique perspective of Claire, who falls back through time, allows us to wonder if people have really changed over 250 years.

Author Diana Gabaldon spends three or four years writing each novel. Each book is a long, heavy volume to savor, and they’re written after extensive historical research. Lovers of historical fiction tend to compare and contrast the past and the present, and although technology and physical surroundings change, many of the social problems from the past exist today. Outlander unwittingly examines poverty, abuse, religion, and tolerance. And there is the white-hot romance between Jamie and Claire, proving the need for real love endures throughout time.

Gabaldon wows us with her character-driven plots. That’s the appeal of Outlander- readers fully experience the horrors of war, the warmth of family and friendship, and the dark humor of eighteenth century medical practices. The Outlander novels fulfill our extremely human need to feel compassion for those undergoing hardship, and it wasn’t easy to live in 1743. The time travel aspect is the least of the obstacles facing Jamie and Claire.

Outlander fans have longed to see Gabaldon’s characters in action onscreen, and in two days, they will wait no more. The timing is perfect: the latest novel in the series, Written in My Own Heart’s Blood, was released June 10th. On August 2nd, devoted fans will judge for themselves how well producers have re-created the beloved world of Jamie and Claire. What does an 18th century Scottish lass do on an average day at Castle Leoch? Will Jack Randall be as terrible and cunning as his character on the page? Will Geillis Duncan be as beautiful and bewitching? The new series will debut on Starz.

If books and television aren’t enough, fans can find themselves back in time and on location. The travel industry in the UK is participating in the Outlander festivities by offering tours of filming locations, where fans see firsthand how reality and the books differ. Although the literary locations are situated in the Scottish highlands, the filming locations are a little different. All places of interest are located in Scotland and can be reached as part of a day tour from either Edinburgh or Glasgow.

The Outlander Tour includes the screen location of Inverness (not in the actual city), Castle Leoch – home to Colum MacKenzie, Cranesmuir – the haunt of Geillis Duncan, and Lallybroch – Jamie Frasers childhood home. The tour continues to the Herb Garden, Mercat Square where Claire was filmed, the church that stood in for Dalneigh Parish Church, and the railway station where Claire and Frank begin their tour to the stones at Craigh na Dun. Tourists will also see the ominous castle of Captain Randall, minus the wolves. For more information about our Outlander tour, visit our Outlander Tour page here.

As the fan fever stirs up, Starz.com, On Demand, and the STARZ play app have been gracious enough to offer the first episode for free. Expect Starz subscriptions to increase in August, and for the web to buzz with critiques on steamy scenes between Jamie and Claire.

Whether you are an old fan of the novels or the trailers have caught your eye, there’s enough Outlander around to keep you occupied for a long time.

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