Camp out on the same beach used in Russell Crowe’s Robin Hood & Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows.
Follow in the paths of TV series like Doctor Who and Torchwood.
Have a pint in Anthony Hopkin’s or Richard Burton’s home towns.
See the dramatic backdrops of films like Clash of the Titans.
Spend a night at “The Prisoner’s” Village, the luxurious Neo-Italianate villa of Portmerion.

Wales in film and on TV

Wales, with its stunning landscapes, unspoiled vistas and land-out-of-
time feel has always been a favorite choice for filmmakers seeking
locations. Natural beauty and accessibility are reasons why location
managers choose Wales, but it’s also a reason why film-lovers
should plan an itinerary that brings their favorite movies and TV to
vivid life. Travelers can spend the afternoon in Richard Burton’s
hometown, hike in the quarry where Clash of the Titans was filmed
and be back at their villa for dinner—the sumptuous location of the
classic Prisoner TV series all in one day.

Cardiff - Celebrity Central

Start your “set-jetting” itinerary in Cardiff, home to Torchwood, Gavin and Stacey, Doctor Who and Merlin. At any time, you may see some of the stars of these series’ at locations in Cardiff and just outside the city.

Some immediately recognizable Torchwood Cardiff locations include the Millennium Stadium, the Queens Arcade Shopping Centre and Roald Dahl Plass, the location of Torchwood’s secret headquarters in Cardiff Bay. For more detailed descriptions visit Torchwood Locations.

You can also be a part of the action - embark on an exciting adventure at Cardiff's Doctor Who Experience where you will be taken on an interactive journey "through time and space."

Panoramic vistas lure filmmakers and travelers alike

Outside of Cardiff, but still within a day’s drive are the wide-screen views of Snowdon that served as a substitute for China in Tomb Raider 2. The two main locations were Llyn Gwynant, where a Chinese village was recreated, and the Alexandra Slate quarry, where Jolie and her co-star Gerard Butler filmed a 100ft drop down a cliff. A motorbike race along the Great Wall of China filmed near Pen-Y-Pass was completed with CGI imaging.

Tomb Raider fans will want to book a night at the plush Seiont Manor Hotel in Snowdonia, where Gerard Butler and Angelina Jolie stayed while filming (in separate rooms, of course!). This is not the first time (or the last) that Wales stood in for China. Back in the 1950’s it doubled for China in the Ingrid Bergman film, The Inn of the Sixth Happiness.

Go to the beach with Russell Crowe, Keira Knightley and Harry Potter

Pembrokeshire’s Freshwater West Beach became a battle ground for Cate Blanchett and Russell Crowe in the recent epic Robin Hood. It’s also a key site for a moving scene in the second part of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. Russell Crowe and his family loved the immaculate, windswept sands of Freshwater so much that he turned down an offer to be helicoptered back to a five-star hotel in London and opted instead to camp out on the beach with his family for several nights. Travelers will find the same stunning vistas as well as walking paths in the nearby Pembrokeshire Coast National Park.

Keira Knightley spent time in the charming beachside town of New Quay in Cardigan Bay in Ceredigion while filming the romantic Dylan Thomas biopic, The Edge of Love. Other film locations included Dylan Thomas’ boathouse museum at Laugharne and the beautiful and historic town of Tenby in Pembrokeshire.

A TV classic comes to luxurious life

Classic TV-lovers of all ages will want to book a stay in the location that stood in for the ominious “Village” in the Prisoner TV series. In real life, it’s the luxurious and romantic Portmeirion Village, an entire town of castles, cottages and villas by the edge of a dramatic estruary. The town has been featured in other film and TV shoots since The Prisoner, but it’s that iconic 60’s TV show that put this stunning and unique accommodation onTV and film-traveler’s maps. The series is still so popular that dedicated Prisoner conventions come to stay at the village and there’s a full-time Prisoner souvenir shop on-site where you can get T-shirts with the show’s iconic line: “I am not a number, I am a free man.”

Charming towns where legends were born

RB for Screen page Perhaps the most iconic film name connected with Wales is that of Richard Burton. Burton was born Richard Walter Jenkins in the village of Pontrhydyfen, Neath Port Talbot, Wales. Then, as now, the town was a small, close-knit community of working class people. Today, a visit to the town can include a walk along a Richard Burton themed trail or having a pint in Richard’s local pub. Want to visit Richard Burton’s Wales?  Check out our Richard Burton themed itinerary here. Another star born in the Port Talbot area is Sir Anthony Hopkins. He is from the town of Margam; nearby attractions include Margam County Park, home to a fairy tale castle and miles of unspoiled landscape.

Planning Tips

  • Staying There
    Portmeirion and Seiont Manor Hotel are open year round and accommodations can be found in and around all the film locations mentioned here.  Cardiff is home to many fine hotels of all prices and styles and many of these are often booked by visiting celebrities who are filming in the area or performing in Cardiff.
  • Follow the Movie Map
    The Wales Screen Commission makes it easy to track your favorite movie locations in Wales. Visit their online movie map to find dozens more sites to visit from films both old and new.