We may have a climate of seemingly eternal summer in Los Angeles but for millions of Game of Thrones fans—who have been warned that winter is coming since 2011—winter finally arrived this spring. And even though Los Angeles feels worlds away from King’s Landing and the Kingdom of the North, there are many ways to simulate your own Westeros experience here in SoCal.
In July 2019, Game of Thrones received 32 Emmy Award nominations, the most for any program in a single season. Celebrate this record-breaking achievement with your own Game of Thrones experiences in Los Angeles.
Indulge in the Dark Arts at Universal Studios Hollywood
We know, we know. Harry Potter is G-rated, whereas GoT is for grownups. Still, you can indulge in a dark arts experience that's sure to be safer than Daenerys’s first experience with witches and blood spells. The Dark Arts at Hogwarts™ Castle premiered in April 2019 and is now on view to the public at The Wizarding World of Harry Potter™ through August 11. Lights and music create a creepy ambiance, while curses and creatures yield goosebumps.
Warg Your Way to Union Station for Magic & Mystery (July 20)
Speaking of the Dark Arts, you can experience a variety of magic styles during Magic & Mystery at Union Station on Saturday, July 20. Taking place on the South Patio from 6-9pm, the spellbinding event is hosted by Lindsay Benner and features illusionist Joseph Tran, magician Riccardo Berdini, and numerous performers who will mingle with guests and perform close-up magic and sleight of hand sorcery.
Go North of the Wall at Big Bar
During the final season, Big Bar at Alcove Cafe featured Cocktails for the Watch, a menu of GoT inspired cocktails. Big Bar's new summer menu features two favorites from Cocktails for the Watch: the Mad Queen (Absolut Elyx Vodka, Peychauds Aperitivo, Eve's Rose Petals Tea, lemon, champagne) and the Tiki-inspired Welcome to the Jungle Bird (aka R+L=J minus the “wedding wrap” and feather garnish).
Take Selfies with the Night King and Sit On the Iron Throne at Brennan's
Pay Homage to House Targaryen
They might not have wings, but L.A. does have a few resident dragons and even more immortalized in art. Visit the Komodo Dragons at the L.A. Zoo for an afternoon in the sun, then head over to Chinatown where you’ll be formally welcomed by the Twin Dragon Gateway. Be sure to take time to admire the “Chinese Celestial Dragon” mural originally painted in 1941 by Tyrus Wong. For bonus points, while you’re there you can explore Realm for a perfect little memento for your home. (Just saying, the carved vases look a lot like dragon eggs).
Experience the True Wonder of Wolves
If you can’t imagine GoT without Ghost, Shaggydog, Summer, Lady, Grey Wind and Nymeria serving House Stark, we’ve got good news. You can connect with rescued wolves during a guided hike at the Wolf Connection® in the Angeles National Forest. You’ll learn the stories of each of the 30+ wolves in the pack, and even have the opportunity to interact with the wolves who will join you on a nature walk. Plus, you’ll be giving back to others—much as the direwolves gave everything to the Starks— since proceeds from ticket sales benefit Wolf Connection, a youth education and empowerment program, which provides Wolf Therapy™ to at-risk groups.
Climb as High as House Arryn
Legend has it that Artys Arryn, the Winged Knight, staked his claim for House Arryn atop the highest mountain of the Vale. His strategic position is said to have played a role in the defeat of the First Men Mountain Kings. While we can’t claim that a hike to the top of Echo Mountain will lead to ruling Pasadena forevermore, we are relatively sure that you won’t experience a Targaryen invasion, while trudging along this difficult, nearly six-mile hike.
Feed Your Inner Lion
If, like House Lannister, your spirit animal is a lion, choose from several options for feeding the beast. In Silver Lake, at the Red Lion Tavern, German fare along with a huge variety of Pilsners, Bocks, and Lagers will keep hunger pangs at bay as you indulge in Monday night trivia, Wednesday night karaoke, or piano the remaining nights of the week.
In Koreatown, you can also get your fill at Mama Lion which— in just two years— has become a hotspot for celebrities, and has received acclaim for both its design and architecture, as well as its happy hour specials.
Once you’ve had your fill, depending upon the season, you could also head over to the STAPLES Center for the chill of the ice, the thrill of the sport, and to see Bailey the lion mascot of the L.A. Kings.