top of page

Why STR hosts love shows like Game of Thrones

Game of Thrones
Castle Ward Tower, AKA Winterfell, from Game of Thrones, which was partly filmed in Northern Ireland.

What do Game of Thrones, Harry Potter, Batman, and James Bond have in common? Well, apart from being blockbuster hits on the small and big screen, they are playing a major role in boosting the UK’s booming staycation market – which in turn is boosting profits for short-term rental hosts and property managers up and down the country.

The Sykes Staycation Index 2024 included a list of 10 pop culture choices that are fuelling people’s desire to travel – with the list topped by Game of Thrones, which was partly filmed in Northern Ireland. Here’s the full list:

  1. Northern Ireland – Game of Thrones

  2. Edinburgh – One Day

  3. Cornwall – Poldark

  4. Liverpool – The Batman

  5. Manchester – Fool Me Once

  6. Alnwick – Harry Potter

  7. Glencoe – Skyfall

  8. West Bay, Dorset – Broadchurch

  9. Bath – Persuasion

  10. Lowick, Northamptonshire – Saltburn

The report highlighted the massive impact of domestic tourism, which is set to boost the UK economy by £30.3 billion this summer. On average, Britons will take three breaks this year and spend more than £1,000 each.

According to Sykes, more Brits are choosing to holiday at home because it’s easier, cheaper, and less stressful. The top activities in the UK are coastal walks, countryside walks, exploring local attractions, having a pub lunch, and trying local restaurants, while the five most popular type of UK breaks are cottage-style holiday homes, city breaks, lakes and mountains, beachfront holiday homes, and countryside bed and breakfasts. The most searched-for property features are a hot tub, Wi-Fi, and garden.

Top 10 most popular staycation destinations

  1. Cornwall

  2. Scottish Highlands and Islands

  3. London

  4. Devon

  5. Yorkshire

  6. Cumbria

  7. North Wales

  8. Norfolk

  9. Dorset

  10. Isle of Wight

While Northumberland, central Scotland, and the south coast of England are the top trending destinations in the short-term rentals market, here are the top 10 towns and villages:

  1. Llanfechell

  2. Thorpe on the Hill

  3. Invergarry

  4. Newton-by-the-Sea

  5. Torver

  6. Chichester

  7. Bournemouth

  8. Porthcawl

  9. Boroughbridge

  10. Largs

And here are five hidden gems which continue to attract tourists year after year:

  1. Ashgill Force, a waterfall near Alston, Cumbria

  2. The Iron Bridge in Shropshire

  3. Holehird Gardens in the Lake District

  4. Berafundle Bay in Pembrokeshire

  5. The village of Dent in the Yorkshire Dales

While most holidaymakers enjoy walking and going to the pub, a host of more unusual staycation activities are becoming ever more popular. Here are the top 10:

  1. Wild swimming

  2. Visiting caves

  3. Hunting for fossils

  4. Ghost hunting

  5. Hiking with llamas

  6. Participating in unique events

  7. Ziplining

  8. Surfing

  9. Cooking classes

  10. Foraging



bottom of page