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The north and the location of the barrowlands
The north and the location of the barrowlands
The north and the location of the barrowlands

The barrowlands is an area of extensive plains between Winterfell and Moat Cailin in the north.[1]


The barrowlands is a region of wide, hilly plains covered with hundreds of barrows,[2] the ancient graves of the First Men.[3] Most of the barrowlands are flat and windswept.[4]

The region appears to be bounded by the wolfswood to the north, the White Knife and the Bite to the east, the Neck to the south, and the Rills to the west.[5][6] The town of Barrowton, seat of House Dustin, lies within the area north of the Saltspear; a river runs from the town to the inlet.[5] It takes about eight days to reach the barrowlands from Winterfell.[2]


The largest hill of the region, the Great Barrow in Barrowton, is said to contain the grave of the First King of the First Men or a King of the Giants.[4] House Dustin of Barrowton has ruled the barrowlands on behalf of House Stark of Winterfell since the defeat of the Barrow Kings.[7]

In the story of the seventy-nine sentinels, deserters of the Night's Watch fled to the barrowlands and sought refuge in the castle of Lord Ryswell, but the Lord of the Rills returned them to the Wall.[8]

There were reports that Rhaena Targaryen and her dragon, Dreamfyre, were seen as far north as the barrowlands and the Fever River during her search for the missing Aerea Targaryen.[9]

Attendees of the tourney at Harrenhal included barrowdown men.[10]

Recent Events

A Game of Thrones

After accepting the position of Hand of the King, Lord Eddard Stark travels with King Robert I Baratheon south from Winterfell to King's Landing. While traveling through the barrowlands, the longtime friends temporarily depart from the kingsroad to ride amongst the plains.[3]

While traveling through the barrowlands en route to Castle Black, Samwell Tarly sees snow for the first time.[11]

Maester Luwin tells Bran Stark that barrow knights wait to join Robb Stark's army as it travels south from Winterfell.[12]

A Clash of Kings

Luwin sends a raven to the barrowlands requesting a levy to assist in the fight at Torrhen's Square.[13]

A Dance with Dragons

Led by Lady Barbrey Dustin of Barrowton, the barrowlands support Lord Roose Bolton, the new Warden of the North, after the death of Robb, the King in the North.[4]

Using Barrowton as a base, Ramsay Bolton and the Bastard's Boys unsuccessfully search the barrowlands for the Frey envoys, Rhaegar, Symond, and Jared, who have gone missing after leaving White Harbor.[4]


A wide plain spread out beneath them, bare and brown, its flatness here and there relieved by long, low hummocks.[3]

—thoughts of Eddard Stark

Eddard: The barrows of the First Men.

Robert: Have we ridden onto a graveyard?
Eddard: There are barrows everywhere in the north, Your Grace, this land is old.

Robert: And cold.[3]

Chapters that take place in the barrowlands


  1. A Dance with Dragons, Map of the North
  2. 2.0 2.1 George R. R. Martin's A World of Ice and Fire, Barrowlands.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 A Game of Thrones, Chapter 12, Eddard II.
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 A Dance with Dragons, Chapter 32, Reek III.
  5. 5.0 5.1 The Lands of Ice and Fire, Westeros.
  6. The A Game of Thrones RPG and Resource Book by Guardians of Order states the barrowlands stretch from the Stony Shore to the Bite, which therefore suggests the landscape includes the Rills. The more recent The Lands of Ice and Fire and the Map of the North in A Dance with Dragons depict them as separate regions.
  7. The World of Ice & Fire, The North.
  8. A Storm of Swords, Chapter 56, Bran IV.
  9. Fire & Blood, Jaehaerys and Alysanne - Their Triumphs and Tragedies.
  10. A Storm of Swords, Chapter 24, Bran II.
  11. A Game of Thrones, Chapter 26, Jon IV.
  12. A Game of Thrones, Chapter 53, Bran VI.
  13. A Clash of Kings, Chapter 46, Bran VI.