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A map showing the location of the Smoking Sea off the coast of Essos.

The Smoking Sea, formed amidst a string of islands at the shattered southern end of the Valyrian Peninsula.

"East of Westeros lies the Smoking Sea, where no ship dares sail. There are those who swear it to be demon-haunted. And who's to say they're wrong?"
Viserys Targaryen[src]

The Smoking Sea is a body of water located immediately to the south of the Valyrian Peninsula, on the south coast of Essos. It is part of the ocean known as the Summer Sea. Formed by the Doom of Valyria, the Smoking Sea separates the numerous islands that were formerly part of Valyria from one another and the mainland to the north.[1]


Season 2

Quaithe of the Shadow Lands inscribes a sailor with apparently magical tattoos. She says these symbols will protect him as his ship must sail within sight of Valyria.[2]

Season 5

Tyrion and Jorah travel by boat on the Smoking Sea through the towering ruins of old Valyria

After kidnapping Tyrion Lannister in Volantis, Jorah Mormont steals a fishing boat and heads east to Meereen in Slaver's Bay to present him as a gift to Daenerys Targaryen. Jorah takes the boat through the Smoking Sea as a shortcut, and as he explains to Tyrion, because even pirates are afraid to approach the waters around Valyria, they won't get any trouble from them on that route. Along the way, they are attacked by stone men exiled among the ruins;[3] one of them touches Jorah on the left wrist and infects him with Greyscale.

In the books

The Smoking Sea and the ruins of Old Valyria.

In the A Song of Ice and Fire novels the Smoking Sea is ill-omened. Its waters are said to bubble and let off foul vapors and mists which can kill sailors outright. The Smoking Sea is a recent phenomenon, formed four hundred years ago during the Doom of Valyria when the peninsula was shattered by a massive series of volcanic eruptions and earthquakes.

The Smoking Sea is considered cursed and haunted. Most sailors refuse to sail its waters, instead circumnavigating Valyria by taking a wide detour out to sea.

See also