Game of Thrones is rocketing towards its grand finale, with season 8 - and the show's final episodes - just months away. Here's what you need to know about when Game of Thrones is back, along with what to expect from the final season, and how to catch up on seasons 1-7.

When is Game of Thrones next on?

Season 8 is finally arriving on our screens on 14 April 2019. The date was revealed along with a trailer which you can watch below.

Remember that in the UK, the time difference means the episode will actually debut on 15 April some time very early in the morning, though will be broadcast later that day at a friendlier time for UK viewers who don't want to stay up late. HBO hasn't announced a precise start date yet, but we'll be sure to update this article as soon as it does.

The other thing we know is that the season will comprise just six episodes. Some of these episodes will be longer than normal though, which should soften the blow a little.

Watch the trailer

This teaser trailer for the series that's heavy on tone, and fancy ice and fire special effects, all serving as a reminder that this season is when things are really going to kick off:

It's not a GoT trailer as such, but HBO's look ahead to some big shows in 2019 includes a first look at season 8 (alongside the likes of Watchmen and Big Little Lies). The very short clip, shown at 39 seconds, shows Sansa speaking to Jon Snow and Daenerys at Winterfell.

Season 8 photos

We may not have had much video content from the new season, but HBO has at least unveiled a load of photos from the final season. Predictably, they don't reveal much though: mostly that people will be doing a lot of brooding in big fur coats, which we probably could have guessed anyway really.

Game of Thrones Season 8 photos

What to expect from season 8

We know next to nothing about season 8 really, as the production has gone to unprecedented lengths to avoid leaks and spoilers, even locking the scripts down behind multiple layers of password security.

Pretty much the first concrete info we have comes from an Entertainment Weekly feature on the show, which includes a few precious scraps of information. First up, we know a bit about what to expect from the season opener:

"Season 8 opens at Winterfell with an episode that contains plenty of callbacks to the show’s pilot. Instead of King Robert’s procession arriving, it’s Daenerys and her army. What follows is a thrilling and tense intermingling of characters — some of whom have never previously met, many who have messy histories — as they all prepare to face the inevitable invasion of the Army of the Dead."

We also got a tease of at least one of the interpersonal conflicts that's going to come out of all this - though it's not exactly a surprise. Apparently "Sansa isn’t thrilled that Jon bent the knee to his fancy new Targaryen girlfriend, at least not at first."

Speaking of, you can see Jon and Daenerys cosying up together in the only image released so far from season 8:

So what else do we know? Well, the penultimate episode will be one giant battle - one which "makes the Battle of the Bastards look like a theme park," according to Peter Dinklage. That battle required 55 night shoots for the exterior shots - followed by weeks more shooting in the studio, all helmed by 'Battle of the Bastards' director Miguel Sapochnik.

Finally, we know that the season is likely to have some surprises up its sleeve - at least when it comes to who survives:

"What’s being filmed here is episode 6, the series finale... I look around at a meticulously constructed set that I’ve never seen on the show before. Several actors are performing, and I’m stunned: There are characters in the finale that I did not expect."

How to watch Game of Thrones online

Game of Thrones is shown exclusively on Sky Atlantic in the UK, so if you're a Sky customer with the right package then simply tune in via your Sky Box. If you want to watch online with an internet connection then you can do so with Sky Go or other methods. 

Sky Go

If you have a Sky subscription, then it's easy. Game of Thrones is every Monday on Sky Atlantic. Sky Go is available through web browsers and via a smartphone and tablet app.

Now TV

If you're not a Sky customer then don't worry as there is still an easy way to watch Game of Thrones online. Sky Atlantic (and various other channels) is available through Sky Now TV as part of the Entertainment package which currently costs £7.99 per month.

This is also the easiest way to watch old episodes of the show - right now Now TV has season 7 available on the service, but from 1 March it will add the entire show so far, giving you a month and a half to binge your way through the whole thing in preparation for the final season.

Like Sky Go, Now TV is available on a wide range of devices including Chromecast, Roku, YouView, Xbox One, PS4, PC, Mac, Android and iOS. Sky also has the Now TV Box and the newer Now TV Streaming Smart Stick which you can buy for just £14.99.

HBO Now

Since Game of Thrones is an HBO TV show you can also use the broadcaster's streaming service, HBO Now, to watch Game of Thrones. However, it's only available in the US so you'll need to use a VPN in order to gain access. Check out our full guide to watching HBO from the UK for more info.