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"Game of Thrones' Made A Town In Croatia So Popular That They Have To Turn Tourists Away

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People- It was only two years ago when Game of Thrones fans watched Cersei Lannister march through the busy streets of King’s Landing for her walk of atonement as Septa Unella rung a bell, yelling, “Shame! Shame! Shame!” But those streets featured in HBO’s mega-hit are now similarly crowded in real life. A tourist boom has hit Dubrovnik, Croatia — so much so that the city is now trying to combat overcrowding. Dubrovnik has been heavily featured throughout the show’s seven seasons, serving as the setting of King’s Landing, the capital city where the titular Iron Throne sits. The popularity of Game of Thrones was responsible for 10% of the annual growth in tourism in Dubrovnik, the city’s mayor told Bloomberg in 2015. As Quartz pointed out, Thrones-inspired tourism helped pull Croatia out of a tough recession that lasted from 2009 to 2014, though its economy is still 7% smaller than it was in 2008. “We became too popular in the last couple of years, we became a victim to our own success,” Ivan Vukovic, who has led tours in the ancient city for 12 years, told MONEY.

I don’t understand this one bit and I’m one of the biggest Game of Thrones fans you’ll ever meet. It just seems like you would be overwhelmed with disappointment as soon as you got there. It’s not King’s Landing. It’s Dubrovnik, Croatia. You’re not gonna run into Cersei Lannister. You’re not gonna be able to re-trace the steps of her shame walk. You’re not gonna see Varys or Littlefinger lurking in the shadows. You’re not gonna be able to visit the brothels that Tyrion used to frequent. You’re gonna see people who live in Croatia going about their daily lives in a Croatian town. Or, by the sound of it, you’ll be constantly running into other GOT idiots who traveled across the world to see a place that’s not even really there. You’d get there and be like, “Yep this kinda sorta looks like the place I see on my TV every Sunday but not really tbh” and it’d be over. Then you’re just in Croatia.

I mean if King’s Landing was a real place I’d be there in a HEARTBEAT. Sure it’d be a super dangerous place but it’d be well worth visiting. No doubt about it. But just the back drop that they use? In the word of KFC, for sure not.