Film & TV Trail The Wye Valley & Forest of Dean

Visit the locations of popular films like Star Wars and Harry Potter and TV shows like Doctor Who and Merlin.

Visit Film & TV locations in the Wye Valley and Forest of Dean

Explore the natural beauty that provided backdrop of many scenes in big blockbuster films and popular TV series. From Star Wars to Doctor Who and Harry Potter to Atlantis. The Forest of Dean and Wye Valley has a varied and popular history with filmmakers and inspirational figures.

Our holiday cottages are ideally situated within easy reach of these locations and visiting them will make a great day trip for you and your fellow guests.

Film Locations

With the latest Star Wars film ‘The Last Jedi’ having recently entered cinemas and a new Fantastic Beasts film arriving in 2018 from Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling, there is renewed interest from fans new and old in visiting some of the locations used in these films.

  • Star Wars

    • The return of Star Wars with ‘The Force Awakens’ was met with much anticipation.  The first confrontation between Kylo Ren and Rey was during the attack on Maz Kanata’s fortress. This forest setting was filmed at local beauty spot Puzzlewood near Coleford.

  • Harry Potter

    • Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part One – Set during the period when Harry, Ron and Hermione are on the run, they are hiding in the Forest of Dean.  Coppet Hill is the main location for this scene, but there is also a shot that is only used in the trailer showing the characters in Symonds Yat, walking near the Horseshoe Bend of the River Wye.

    • The Forbidden Forest is also said to be inspired by Puzzlewood near Coleford as based on the childhood recollections of J.K. Rowling when she visited the Forest of Dean as a child.

  • Lord of the Rings

    • Whilst New Zealand was the location for the filming of J.R.R. Tolkien’s books by Peter Jackson, the inspiration for places such as the Old Forest, Mirkwood, Fangorn and Lothorien is again reputed to be based on Puzzlewood.  The magical qualities of this unique corner of the Forest of Dean seems to have a great effect on the imagination!

TV locations

With its need to find filming locations that offer a suitable backdrop to suggest other time periods and also other planets Doctor Who has filmed regularly in The Wye Valley and Forest of Dean as it is quite close to their TV Studio base in Cardiff.  This versatility, limited only by the imagination and skills of the directors of TV shows has also seen it used in a wide variety of other programmes too.

  • Doctor Who

    • Clearwell Caves appeared in the new Doctor Who series as early as David Tennant’s first outing as the Tenth Doctor in ‘The Christmas Invasion’ adding a creepy atmosphere to the inside of the spaceship that brought the Sycorax to Earth.  This spooky feeling also meant that the show used Clearwell Caves again in a later Tenth Doctor episode, ‘The Satan Pit’.

    • The town centre of Monmouth around the Shire Hall and through the arch to Beaufort Arms Court were used as the filming location for Dickensian London in the Series 1 episode ‘The Unquiet Dead’ and Christmas Special ‘The Next Doctor’.

    • Another Christmas episode featured Beechenhurst Lodge as the setting for ‘The Doctor, The Widow and the Wardrobe’.

  • Merlin

    • Raglan Castle just outside Monmouth was used as location throughout the first and second series of the show as the home of the soothsayers

    • Goodrich Castle features in the episode ‘Sins of the Father’ as Morgause is introduced to the show.

For more details on film and TV locations you can visit click here