Many people enjoy gambling, and there are hundreds of great destinations out there for the purpose. As a quick note, before we indulge in the topic yet again, I’d like to state that you don’t have to travel to a gambling destination to get a great experience. Nowadays, you can gamble where ever you travel to. All new online casinos these days are fully adaptable and works flawlessly on any smartphone or tablet. That means that you can play from any hotel room or any beach in the world. If you get the urge to play a little bit, just pull out your mobile device.
Some of these gambling destinations have been in movies. Las Vegas and Monte Carlo are two great examples, but many don’t know that a large number of movies have scenes filmed in Malta.
This is part of why these destinations have such an appeal to a more diverse population than simply gamblers. Just because “Daddy” likes to gamble doesn’t mean that the rest of the family will have a boring vacation.
So, with that said, let’s dive into the wonderful world of travel destinations for gambling and famous films.
Popular casino destinations that also are in blockbuster movies
This list could be made very long. The destinations are popular for filming movies, so we’ll limit the list to the more popular ones – the Blockbusters.
The only place in China where it’s legal to gamble. Also a favourite filming location largely due to its’ flexibility and architecture. More than 100 applications are filed annually to film in Macau, according to South China Morning Post.
It was the French who filmed there first, but it was The Man With the Golden Gun (1974) was the first Hollywood movie to be filmed in Macau. Sir Roger Moore is seen playing the Chinese game Sic Bo with Mr. Scaramanga. This is in the old iconic floating casino Macau Palace, which doesn’t exist anymore. It was removed to create more space for a booming city as it was developing into what it is today.
Skyfall (2012) is the most popular movie to ever be filmed in Macau. Or, rather, an island off the mainland coast of Macau called the Island of Hashima. The island is where Bond first meets the villain, and, funny enough, not where the films’ casino scene is filmed. The Island of Hashima is a UNESCO World Heritage site and well worth visiting.
Now You See Me: The Second Act (2016). Although not related to gambling, people flock to the Macau Science Center which is one of the city’s many visit-worthy destinations.
Unknowing to most people, the tiny Mediterranian island of Malta is a gem. Literally tons of Hollywood blockbusters have scenes filmed in Malta. The Spy Who Loved Me (1977), Midnight Express (1978), Popeye (1980) Clash of the Titans (1981), Gladiator (2000), The Count of Monte Cristo (2002), Troy (2004), Munich (2005), Kon-Tiki (2012), Captain Phillips (2013), World War Z (2013), and By the Sea (2015)… It’s a long list that could go on even farther, but let’s get to the main event of filming in Malta.
But first a little off-shoot for the traveller visiting Malta. They built an actual village to shoot Popeye. The Popeye village still exists today and is one of the islands’ more popular tourist attractions.
The main event… the smash-hit HBO series Game of Thrones. Yes, that’s right all you GoT fans. A total of 10 filming spots are located in Malta:
- St. Dominic’s Convent in Rabat – The Red Keep garden, s1 e7.
- The entry gates to the medieval city of Mdina – Entrance to Kings Landing, s1 e3.
- Mesquita Square in the medieval city of Mdina – The square in front of Little Fingers brothel where Ned Stark and Jamie Lannister fight, s1 e5.
- Fort Ricasoli in Valletta – Another entrance to Kings Landing, s1 e3 & e5.
- Verdala Palace in Buskett Gardens – The official summer residence of Maltas President, thus not available for the public. Seen in s1 e1.
- Fort Manoel on Manoel Island – The Great Sept of Baelor, s1 e9.
- San Anton Palace and Gardens in Attard – Part of the Red Keeps exterior, s1 e3, 8 & 10.
- Fort St. Angelo in Birgu – Seen s1 e5, also acts as the dungeon beneath the Red Keep.
- Mtahleb Cliffs, most western cliffs in Malta – Where Khal Drogo dies and is burned on the funeral pyre, s1 e9 & 10.
- The Azure Window in Gozo – Daenerys and Khal Drogo’s wedding party, s1 e1.
Lots to see for GoT fans!
Yeah, let’s not… This list is endless! Popular tourist attractions include the Grand Canyon, the High Roller (the wheel), the Fountains of Bellagio and the Bellagio Conservatory & Botanical Garden, the viewing deck at the Eifel Tower, the Hoover Dam bypass. The list is very long.
Where ever you’re going, the destinations will have countless attractions, sites, and places to visit where you absolutely shouldn’t be without a great camera!