GOT – THE NIGHT IS DARK AND FULL OF TERRORS
Oh, you thought we were over talking about Game of Thrones? No way!
Following up our previous brainstorm on GOT castles and fortresses, let’s rush straight into the second round:
Riverrun is the ancestral home of House Tully, the Lords Paramount of the Trident, located in the western riverlands, at the junction of the Red Fork and Tumblestone rivers. It has a pretty cool moat system that can surround the castle by water on three sides, which means it’s hard to attack unless you are fully stocked with battle mermaids.
Riverrun is a strong three-sided castle, although not especially large. The castle is bordered on the north by the Tumblestone and on the south by the Red Fork, while on the west a third side faces a massive man-made ditch. In time of danger, the sluice gates can be opened to fill a wide moat and leave the castle surrounded on all three sides by water, turning Riverrun into an island and leaving it practically unassailable. It commands a view of many leagues.
2. THE DREADFORT
A fortress in the north, in northeastern Westeros and east of Winterfell, the Dreadfort is the seat of House Bolton. It is a scary place, where Boltons of yore used to hang the flayed skin of their enemies on the walls.
Located on the banks of the upper Weeping Water, it is southeast of the Lonely Hills and north of the Sheepshead Hills. The Dreadfort is north of Hornwood, south of Last Hearth, and southwest of Karhold.
The Dreadfort is a strong fortress, with high walls and triangular merlons that look like sharp stone teeth. It has thick stone walls and massive towers. Its great hall is dim and smoky, with rows of torches grasped by skeletal human hands jutting from the walls.
The Dreadfort is ill omened, for it is said the Boltons keep torture chambers and a special room where they hang the flayed skins of their enemies, including several Kings in the North.
3. THE EYRIE
The Eyrie is an ancient castle and the seat of House Arryn, one of the oldest lines of Andal nobility, within the Vale of Arryn. It is located in the Mountains of the Moon astride the peak known as the Giant’s Lance, several thousand feet above the valley below. It’s notoriously hard to attack because it sits atop an honest-to-god mountain. The Eyrie’s notable features are the sky cells, which are basically jail cells carved into the side of the mountain so that prisoners can just roll right the eff out, and the Moon Door, which is a hole in the floor designed for pushing enemies to their death.
The Eyrie is the smallest of the great castles, consisting only of a cluster of seven slim, white towers bunched tightly together. They can hold up to five hundred men. The castle is made of fine white stone. The towers encircle a garden, which had been meant as a godswood, but no weirwood heart tree would take root in the stony soil.
4. THE RED KEEP
The Red Keep is located on Aegon’s Hill in King’s Landing, the capital of the Seven Kingdoms and is the home of the Iron Throne. It’s where the Lord of the Seven Kingdoms lives when he or she isn’t roaming up and down the Kingsroad or blowing up the Great Sept of Baelor.
Within the Red Keep is another castle called Maegor’s Holdfast, which is protected by a 12-foot-thick wall.
The Red Keep is made of pale red stone and overlooks the mouth of the Blackwater Rush. The Red Keep has seven massive drum-towers crowned with iron ramparts. The castle is smaller than Winterfell and is patrolled by gold cloaks. Much of the Red Keep is connected underground.
Massive curtain walls surround the castle, with nests and crenelations for archers. Thick stone parapets, some four feet high, protect the outer edge of the wall ramparts, where the heads of traitors are traditionally placed on iron spikes between the crenels at the gatehouse. The walls have great bronze gates and portcullises, with narrow postern doors nearby. The castle also has great cornerforts. The immense barbican has a cobbled square in front of it. Behind the walls are small inner yards, vaulted halls, covered bridges, barracks of the City Watch of King’s Landing, dungeons, granaries, kennels, and stables.
5. THE TWINS
The Twins is the name for the home of House Frey in the northern riverlands, so called because it consists of two identical castles connected by a bridge over the Trident. People who want to cross the bridge have to go through the Freys.
It is one of the most formidable strongholds of the Seven Kingdoms.
It is a fortified crossing standing on a margin of the Green Fork of the Trident. They have high curtain walls, deep moats, and a barbican and portcullis in each. Channels can be dug to form moats, turning each castle into an island.
A stone bridge arches between the castles, with the bridge footings rising from within the inner keeps. This bridge is wide enough for two wagons to cross abreast. It is the only crossing point over the Green Fork for hundreds of miles in either direction, from the north to the western riverlands. It lies directly athwart the main route from Winterfell to Riverrun.
The bridge is guarded in the middle by the Water Tower. This structure has arrow slits, murder holes, and portcullises for defense. Guests of honor can reside in its chambers and at least one suite and their featherbeds have corner posts carved in the shape of towers.
6. THE WATER GARDENS
Located in Dorne, the Water Gardens is a private residence for House Martell, although it’s not the capital of Dorne – that would be Sunspear, which hasn’t been pictured. Think of the Water Gardens like the Mar-a-Lago of House Martell, only not as tacky.
The Gardens are located on a beach next to the Summer Sea, three leagues to the west of Sunspear on a coastal road.
Pale pink marble paves the gardens and courtyard. Terraces overlooking the numerous pools and fountains of the Water Gardens, shaded by blood orange trees, can be reached via a fluted pillar gallery leading to a triple archway.
The Water Gardens are pleasant in autumn: hot days, cool nights, the salt breeze blowing in from the sea, and fountains and pools to admire and play in. Children from all stations and areas of Dorne are sent to the Water Gardens to foster, where they play together at the beach, pools, fountains, and in the water.
Winterfell is the ancestral castle and seat of House Stark and the capital of the North. Even though it’s colder in the North than it is down south, you could do a lot worse than living in Winterfell – its walls are heated by an underground hot spring. Cozy!
According to legend, Winterfell was built by Brandon the Builder thousands of years ago.
Winterfell is a huge castle complex spanning several acres and protected by two massive walls. There is a village outside, the winter town. Winterfell has been built around an ancient godswood and over natural hot springs. The water is piped through walls and chambers to heat them, making Winterfell more comfortable than other castles during the harsh northern winters.
Inside the walls, the complex is composed of dozens of courtyards and small open spaces. Weapons training and practice take place in those yards. The inner ward is a second, much older open space in the castle. It is located next to the broken tower.
Now, are you ready to conquer the Seven Kingdoms?
AS we said previously, these are only suggestions. But in the end, which castle will you choose?
Take this unique opportunity to be part of the fantasy world written by George R. R. Martin.
Winter comes in July!
See you all next week!!