A Map of The Witcher Series

Andrzej Sapkowski’s Witcher series has become one of the most popular fantasy series of modern times, thanks to the immense success of the video game trilogy from CD Projekt Red. The arrival of a Netflix series based on the books later this year will no doubt increase the success of the books even further.

The Witcher Map

A map of the Witcher continent. Please click for a larger version.

 

The cartography of the Witcher series is interesting. Sapkowski did not originally include maps in the books, despite the action unfolding over detailed descriptions of terrain. The first map did not appear until the Czech translation of the series was published, when translator Stanislav Komárek created a map based on Sapkowski’s work. It is unclear to what degree that Sapkowski considered the map accurate or canonical (given that the Komárek map has some notable features missing, such as the Kestrel Mountains).

Witcher Original Polish Map

The first Witcher map, created by Stanislav Komárek for the Czech editions of the books. Please click for a larger version.

In 2007, for the release of the video game The Witcher, CD Projekt Red created their own map. They consulted with Sapkowski on the map, which clearly has taken the Komárek map as a starting point, but made the map clearer and more concise, and addressed some missing features from the former map. This map was re-used for The Witcher 2: Assassins of Kings in 2011 and seems to have formed the basis for almost all Witcher maps published since then. However, this map also has significant errors, such as placing the Nilfgaardian province of Gemmera, noted for its long sea coast, inland.

Witcher 2 Video Game Map

CDProjekt Red’s map of The Witcher and The Witcher 2: Assassins of Kings. Please click for a larger version.

In 2018, whilst working on the Witcher TV series for Netflix, executive producer and showrunner Lauren Hissrich tweeted an intriguing picture, suggesting that Netflix had commissioned a new map for the series. This map is only partially visible, but seems to have returned to the Komárek map and started again, ignoring the CD Projekt material (probably a necessity of them not having the licence or rights to use video game material in the TV series). It does seem to have repeated some of the omissions of the Komárek map, but also extends the map considerably far to the south and incorporated fresh mistakes by ignoring details from the books (such as Bremervoord being the western point of the continental mainland and the continent curving south-westwards rather than south-east). It does at least put Gemmera in the right place, however.

The Witcher

The map tweeted by Lauren Hissrich and apparently to be used whilst working on the Witcher TV series for Netflix. Please click for a larger version.

In 2015 DeviantArt user MartynasB published an excellent map of The Witcher continent, easily the most detailed and attractive made to date. I used this map as the basis for my own; however, there are some issues with the map, particularly the placement of Sodden, Toussaint and the Amell Mountains, that I was unable to fully fix. Other issues from his map, such as the incorrect location of Gemmera, I fixed on my version.

Witcher Megamap

MartynasB’s map of the Witcher world from 2015. A much higher-definition version can be found via the prior DeviantArt link.

I am planning a full read-through of the books later this year, so may revise the map based on a closer reading of the books at that time.

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10 thoughts on “A Map of The Witcher Series”

  1. Thank you! I’ll definitely be using this map for reference it’s very easy to read.

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  2. Preston Hamilton said:

    By far the best map! This will by far take the place for all reference when needed! By far the best, Thank you!!

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  3. Very cool map! Its by far one of, if not the best I’ve seen for the Witcher series.The only issue is the placement of Maecht. In the Sage, Maecht is described as a part of the province of Metinna, so they need to border each other. That’s actually one of the major things that the Netflix map has got right.

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  4. Thanks. I was looking for an accurate map since I plan to read the books.
    I think it’s very odd and inconvenient that the author never made an official map.

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  5. Thanks a lot for the detailled critique!

    However, there is one more, very notable map around, recently! German illustrator Melanie Korte was commissioned with a new (and very beautiful) map for the German republication of the Geralt saga: http://inkcraft-melanie-korte.blogspot.com/2019/04/the-witcher-a2-plakatillustration-die.html Also check out the dtv.de page for more information. I do believe they take the Czech map as a starting point, too?

    Unfortunately, the normal versions of the book will only include a small version of this map on the paperback inlay. Only if you order all five books as a special deal will you receive a larger version.

    Last but certainly not least, there is also a very talented cartographer who has made several versions of the Northern Kingdoms map. He is called Basil, the Scribe and from Poland (https://www.facebook.com/BasilTheScribe/).

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  6. I’m currently making my own. It’s practically a neccesity because even the maps I like the most have some flaws and mistakes and are either too sparce with places or add ridiculous amount of detail while getting the size ratio wrong. Personnaly I prefer the contures and size of the world on CDPR map. The biggest mistake they made is Aed Gynvael and placing of Maecht (which should be next to Mettina) but other than that everything else is plausible and frankly at the time when the map was made, info about Toina being a river in Kovir and Poviss wasn’t available.

    I’ll probably make a book canon map in addition to game canon version I’m currently making. Right now I’m figuring out how to add places from more stylistic Thronebreaker maps in a logical manner (because it is implied days pass in travelling between settlements) and it is working out quite well.

    CDPR expanded the world and added so many places especially in Lyria, Rivia, Angren, Aedirn, Temeria and Redania that I’ll probably prefer the game canon version of the map. I’m also adding places mentioned in RPG booklets, both old and new. Of course I’m inclined to replace Maecht with Geso even in the game canon version because that error never sat with me cause unlike for Aed Gynvael they had the info in the books to get it correctly, but I’m fine with Aed Gynvael staying in Kaedwen. They have consistently put it in the same spot on the game related maps and taxman in Oxenfurt even mentions Kaer Morhen being in Aed Gynvael district. Other than that, Kaedwen is kinda empty without Aed Gynvael so for aestetic reasons I’d rather have it there. For now I left Rakverelin in Kovir and Poviss though.

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  7. It’s a nice map, better than most I’d say, but it seems to have it’s flaws too. Ellander needs to be closer to Mahakam (likely in the foothills), and the location of Barefield and Caingorn don’t match the geographical descriptions given in the short story Bounds of Reason. There’s a number of examples, but note this excerpt:

    “Them’s,” Sheepbagger said, indicating the three notched peaks towering over the surounding area, “is Chiava, Great Kestrel, and Harbinger’s Fang. The trail leads toward the ruins of the old stronghold, and skirts around Chiava from the north, beyond the river’s source. But we can shorten the way by takin’ the bridge. We’ll pass through the gorge and onto the plain ’tween the mountains. And if we don’t find no sign of the dragon there, we’ll continue on eastwards, we’ll search the ravines. And even further eastward there are flat pastures, where there’s a straight road to Caingorn, towards your lands, sire.”

    This seems to indicate that Caingorn stretches further to the east of Barefield, and that the mountain pass is on a branching arm of Kestrel, bisecting the two providences somewhat horizontally.

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  8. Thank you very much for this. I am currently making my way through the books and having a reliable map to refer back to is crucial to successful world building and imagination. This is the best map I have seen by a long way and quite frankly I’m upset with myself for not finding it earlier.

    I’m interested to know if you have been updating it over the past year with the release of the show etc?

    Thanks again!

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  9. Wasn’t Assengard north of Tor Zirael and Mil Trachta? According to your map Assengard is west of those. That is how Vysogota said it was when he asked Ciri to read the books for him.

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    • werthead said:

      The original map was based on ones created by another cartographer who had been reading the books in the original Polish. It does appear some mistakes crept in, so I probably need to do a complete redraw of the southern half of the map at some point.

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