Skyhold is a fortress in the Frostback Mountains and serves as the headquarters for the restored Inquisition.

Background[edit | edit source]

Known as Tarasyl'an Te'las ("the place where the sky is kept" or, more specifically, "the place where the sky was held back") in ancient elvish[1], Skyhold is a fortress located in a stretch of the Frostback Mountains near the Dales, on the border between Orlais and Ferelden, controlling a mountain pass from the kingdom to the empire.[2][3][4]

Dwarven statues

The mountain peak it was built on was the site of rituals carried out by the elves during the height of their civilization, but was later leveled by early Fereldans to provide the foundation of the fortress, making the Keep Fereldan.[5] Ownership of Skyhold has since changed hands many times. During the late Divine Age, it was occupied by a Fereldan enchanter who unsuccessfully sought to learn why the site had been so important to the elves. At one point, even dwarves took residence there.[6] The last known owners of Skyhold lived certainly after the Third Blight with Mason Gatsi suspecting that they had also an extensive trade network.[7]

When Skyhold was rediscovered by the Inquisition, it had fallen into considerable disrepair in the years after its unknown last inhabitants had abandoned it. However, by this time, the magic of the original elven site had permeated the stones of the keep, protecting it from evil.[8]

A living tree was once a symbol of peace between two forgotten factions. Before the first stones of Skyhold's foundations were laid, the tree was cut down, slabbed, and polished to serve as a massive war table.[9]

There is now a clearly marked mountain route to Skyhold; the climb is said to take a week.[10] Once in the valley that Skyhold overlooks, people and pack animals can be brought up via a cable lift. There is only one approach to Skyhold.[11]

This section contains spoilers for:

Skyhold used to be Solas' stronghold.[12]

The Archivist in the Sundered Hall of the Shattered Library stores the following memory: "After he held back the sky to imprison the gods, the Dread Wolf disappeared". Thus Skyhold is the place where the Veil was created, as evident from its ancient name.

Involvement[edit | edit source]

This section contains spoilers for:
Dragon Age: Inquisition.

Guided by Solas, the Inquisition moves their base of operations here from the village of Haven to serve as a proper main base of operations, after being forced out by Corypheus' forces, the Red Templars or the Venatori, depending on the Inquisitor's decision.

Along with the Inquisitor, companions and advisors reside here. Leliana will make a place for herself in the fortress' rookery. Sera, Iron Bull and Cole can be found in the Skyhold tavern Herald's Rest, Cassandra is usually training by the armory, Cullen can be found in a tower adjoining the gatehouse and Blackwall at the stables. Dorian can be found in the library and Solas in the atrium beneath it, and Varric and Vivienne can be seen in the Throne Room. Finally Josephine has made a place for herself in her office next to the Throne Room. The fortress will serve as a hub for romantic encounters and catching up with companions.

The Inquisitor's central command is the war table, which will determine where to focus the Inquisition's attention. From here operational areas can be unlocked and agents can be dispatched on missions. From the Skyhold throne the Inquisitor will hold court and Sit in Judgment over a variety of characters, passing sentences from execution and tranquillity, to making them court jester, or even recruiting them to the Inquisition.

This section contains spoilers for:
Dragon Age: Tevinter Nights.

BioWare canon.png
The plot follows BioWare's own canon, meaning it may not follow some of the player's choices in the games.

Following the disbanding or re-structuring of the Inquisition, Skyhold poses a problem. It was judged too symbolic to be razed and too fortified to be completely abandoned. It was eventually decided that the fortress would be preserved, but defanged. Skyhold is left in the hands of a small group of caretakers, led by a brother of the Chantry with an unremarkable name.

After the caretaker reports his intention to restore the fresco, Skyhold goes silent and a supply caravan disappears. Donal Sutherland and his company are sent to investigate. He suspects that they were chosen because they are small enough to disappear, that they are being used to give officials license to permanently erase the Inquisition's legacy.

Once in Skyhold, Sutherland discovers that the caretakers have been killed by a demon of Regret, formed out of the plaster of Solas' frescos. With the help of his company, as well as that of various former members of the Inquisition, the demon is sent back to the Fade. Divine Victoria later says this of Skyhold: "Know that Skyhold remains, its fires bright. Forever it is where you are from, not where you are bound. Attempt no travel there. Let the past guide you to a new direction."

Renovation[edit | edit source]

At the time of its rediscovery by the Inquisition, Skyhold has deteriorated considerably. The Inquisition brings on a number of workers to help restore the fortress to its former glory. The renovation process spans three stages.

  • Stage 1 - When the Inquisition first arrives at Skyhold. Much of the fortress is inaccessible due to rubble, structural collapses, sealed or bricked-up doorways, and clutter blocking doors. Only the Throne Room, War Room, Undercroft, Atrium, Atrium Library, Rookery, Courtyard, Armory, Training Grounds, and portions of the Battlements are open. The Inquisitor can customize Skyhold's furnishings in the Undercroft.
  • Stage 2 - After leaving and returning to Skyhold for the first time or by choosing the [Special] dialogue option, "Tell me more of yourself," when speaking with Solas which requires some level of friendship as well as the Inquisitor having expended the entirety of the, "Tell me about yourself," tree. Renovation work is well underway, scaffolding has been set up throughout the fortress, and the collapsed bridge dividing the Courtyard has been repaired. In addition to the areas in Stage 1, the Stables, Tavern, Quartermaster's Building, Dungeon, Inquisitor's Quarters, Kitchen, Vault, Vault Library, Garden, Guard Tower, and the rest of the Battlements are now open. The Inquisitor can find a list of three upgrades to Skyhold in the Inquisitor's Quarters and can make Judgments in the Throne Room. Cullen will have moved from his courtyard open-air desk to his permanent office in one of the towers of the main gate unless the Inquisitor has not spoken to him since arriving in Skyhold. He will then remain in the courtyard until the Inquisitor speaks to him.
  • Stage 3 - After completing a main story quest. The renovation of Skyhold is complete. Scaffolding and most remaining rubble or clutter has been removed, and the Throne Room has been furnished with banquet tables and chairs. All areas of Skyhold are open.

Customizations[edit | edit source]

Skyhold can be customized and upgraded by the player. Customization options include: banners, beds, drapes, heraldry, decor, thrones, and windows.

There are several options to choose from, mostly related to particular nations (Orlais, Ferelden etc.) or factions (Andrastian Chantry, Dalish etc.).

Most of these options need to be unlocked by buying them in shops, completing quests or through exploration. The throne can be further upgraded with accessories as well.

For all customization items available to Skyhold, see Skyhold Customization Items..

Collectibles and Acquirements[edit | edit source]

Mosaics[edit | edit source]

  • As the Inquisitor discovers new mosaic pieces found thorough out Thedas, upon returning to Skyhold, the mosaic pieces can be found assembled on the walls within the keep. Three mosaics can be viewed near Gatsi, the dwarf assisting with researching the pieces; while the other two can be viewed upstairs near Vivienne's balcony.

Bottles on the Wall[edit | edit source]

  • As the Inquisitor discovers bottles during the their travels across Thedas, all of the bottles discovered will be available for viewing on shelves located in the Skyhold wine cellar.

Haven Survivors and Agents at Skyhold[edit | edit source]

  • Some of the agents the Inquisitor recruits can be found and talked to at Skyhold.
  • All of the townsfolk that the Inquisitor saved in the attack on Haven will also be hanging out at Skyhold- most typically, around the grounds out front, or also in the courtyard gardens.

Josephine's Vault[edit | edit source]

Skyhold's Prisoners[edit | edit source]

  • If the Inquisitor chooses imprisonment for any wrongdoers who come before them in Sit in Judgment, they can find them later in the Skyhold prisons where some of them may be conversed with.

Florianne the Jester[edit | edit source]

  • If, after Wicked Eyes and Wicked Hearts, the Inquisitor conscripts Florianne as a Court Jester at Skyhold, Florianne will occasionally show up in the throne room.

Upgrades[edit | edit source]

In addition to the furnishing customization options there are three possible major upgrades to Skyhold available. These upgrades can be unlocked by meeting the necessary quotas at the Requisition table. All upgrades reward +1 power.

For all major upgrades available to Skyhold, see Major Upgrades.

Quests[edit | edit source]

A Better Courtyard A Better Courtyard
A Greener Garden A Greener Garden
A Superior Tower A Superior Tower
Advanced Crafting Advanced Crafting
Fragment of Inadequate Chain Mail Fragment of Inadequate Chain Mail
Inquisition Trappings Inquisition Trappings
Promoting Barris Promoting Barris
Rune Crafting Rune Crafting
Scattered in Skyhold Scattered in Skyhold
Sit in Judgment Sit in Judgment
Welcome to Skyhold Welcome to Skyhold

Places[edit | edit source]

The Skyhold Rookery

  • Throne Room
  • War Room
  • Atrium
  • Atrium Library
  • Rookery
  • Kitchens
  • Inquisitor's Quarters - contains Wardrobe
  • Undercroft Undercroft - contains Storage and various crafting/upgrade tables
  • Dungeon (accessible through a door in the courtyard immediately outside the Throne Room, to the left of the stairs.)
  • Vault (The lower level requires the Elite Clientele perk)
  • Vault Library
  • Armory
  • Herald's Rest Herald's Rest
  • Stables
  • Courtyard
  • Garden
  • After arriving at Skyhold, it becomes possible to obtain seeds when harvesting herbs in the wild. The chance to obtain seeds is random for each harvest, so it may take several tries, though only one seed is required for each type of herb. It is possible to collect seeds for all but two of the herbs available in the game. The exceptions are Crystal Grace and Deathroot.
  • The garden comes with two herb planters by default, and another four can be added if the Herb Garden upgrade is chosen. Each planter can hold only one type of herb, though multiple herbs of the same type can be grown in multiple planters.
  • The planted herbs grow after leaving and then returning to Skyhold. It takes two "returns" for a newly planted seed to be harvestable. One "return" is required between each harvest for the plant to reproduce.
  • Guard Tower
  • Battlements
  • Training Grounds
  • Golden Nug

Merchants[edit | edit source]

Frescos[edit | edit source]

In the rotunda below the library and rookery, Solas paints an elven fresco depicting the Inquisition's history, with each panel representing a different stage in the storyline.

This section contains spoilers for:
Dragon Age: Inquisition.

Inquisition fresco 1 & 2.png
Inquisition fresco 3a.jpg
Inquisition fresco 3b.jpg
Inquisition fresco 4.jpg
Inquisition fresco 5a.jpg
Inquisition fresco 5b.jpg
Inquisition fresco 6a.jpg
Inquisition fresco 6b.jpg
Inquisition fresco 7.jpg
Inquisition fresco 8.jpg
Inquisition - Skyhold Fresco.jpg

1) The explosion at the Conclave. A blast on the hill. It explodes outwards and jets up into the sky. In the sky in the sphere is the Fade; the Black City in the center; and the formation of the Inquisition. A pack of wolves howling defiantly against the world, beneath the blade and all-seeing eye of the Inquisition’s symbol.

2) Siding with the Templars. Next to the turrets of Therinfal Redoubt, Envy lurks. Grasping hands and the flaming sword of the Templar sigil.

3) Siding with the mages. A figure in Tevinter gear and iconography - serpents - Alexius. In the distance are the two versions of Redcliffe Castle, including the red and black iteration from the nightmare future scenario.

4) The attack on Haven. Corypheus, orb in hand, presides over the burning and sacking of the village in the mountains.

5) The Siege of Adamant Fortress. Adamant Fortress is in the distance. To the right is the black rocky crags of the Fade. The Black City rests at the center of the sphere; Nightmare’s multiple eyes stare balefully. Appears if done before Wicked Eyes and Wicked Hearts.

6) The Siege of Adamant Fortress. Adamant Fortress is in the distance. To the right is the black rocky crags of the Fade. The Black City rests at the center of the sphere; Nightmare’s multiple eyes stare balefully. Appears if done after Wicked Eyes and Wicked Hearts.

7) The assassination of Empress Celene. An assassin lurks in the window of the Winter Palace, dagger in hand. The figure in blue is wearing Celene’s iconic blue dress with gold collar. The palace is dark due to what has occurred. Appears if done before Here Lies the Abyss.

8) The assassination attempt on Empress Celene. The assassination plot, represented by an assassin with dagger in hand, has been brought to light. The figure in blue is wearing Celene’s iconic blue dress with gold collar. The lighted palace and full ballroom show that the plot has failed. Appears if done after Here Lies the Abyss.

9) The Temple of Mythal. In the halls of Mythal’s temple, a figure dressed like Abelas guards the blue ripples of the Well of Sorrows. The arch could feasibly represent Mythal’s last Eluvian.

10) Unfinished panel meant to commemorate the final battle against Corypheus.[11] A wolf stands over the body of a dragon, slain by the sword.

This section contains spoilers for:
Dragon Age: Tevinter Nights.

BioWare canon.png
The plot follows BioWare's own canon, meaning it may not follow some of the player's choices in the games.

Several years after the end of the War against the Elder One, an attempt to restore the frescos resulted in a demon of Regret forming out of the plaster. The frecos were destroyed.[11]

Notes[edit | edit source]

  • After reaching level 10, the Inquisitor can complete the war table mission Specializations for the Inquisitor to summon specialization trainers to Skyhold. The trainers will gather in certain places depending upon the Inquisitor's class:
    • If the Inquisitor is a rogue, the trainers will congregate in the lower courtyard near the stables.
    • If the Inquisitor is a mage, the trainers will congregate at the front gate near the infirmary tents.
    • If the Inquisitor is a warrior, the trainers will congregate at the top of the battlements near Cullen's office.
  • If you get the "Elite Clientele" Inquisition perk, a new vault opens up in Skyhold where you keep your gold, hat and pies. It is located on the same level as the wine cellar and the kitchen. Lord Trifles Minutiae will also take up residence here if the Quiz Quizquisition has not yet been completed.
  • Falling damage is turned off in Skyhold. You can jump off of the parapets into the garden several stories below and take no damage.
  • pcPC If the door to the hallway to the war room is opened after Josephine converses with either of her assistants, the assistant will go into the hallway, turn left and walk through the wall.

Codex entries[edit | edit source]

Codex entry: On Skyhold Codex entry: On Skyhold

Codex entry: Skyhold Garden Codex entry: Skyhold Garden

Codex entry: The Rotunda and the Fresco Codex entry: The Rotunda and the Fresco

Codex entry: The Rite of Tranquility Codex entry: The Rite of Tranquility

Codex entry: The Women of All War Codex entry: The Women of All War

Codex entry: Take Back the Sky: A Tavern Cheer Codex entry: Take Back the Sky: A Tavern Cheer

Codex entry: War Hounds (restorable) Codex entry: War Hounds (restorable)

Note texts[edit | edit source]

Bellanaris Din'an Heem Bellanaris Din'an Heem

Bride of the Maker Bride of the Maker

Construction Report: Brickmarks Construction Report: Brickmarks

Construction Report: Death on the Wall Construction Report: Death on the Wall

Construction Report: Mixed Elements Construction Report: Mixed Elements

Construction Report: Request to Fight Construction Report: Request to Fight

Construction Report: Scaffolding Construction Report: Scaffolding

Construction Report: Surfacing Construction Report: Surfacing

Fallen Chandelier Fallen Chandelier

Herald's Rest (plaque) Herald's Rest (plaque)

News from Thedas News from Thedas

Prison Structural Evaluation Prison Structural Evaluation

Proper Andraste x 2 Proper Andraste x 2

Request for Resources on the Fade Request for Resources on the Fade

Sera's Cabinet of Wonder Whose It Was Sera's Cabinet of Wonder Whose It Was

Tavern Notices Tavern Notices

The Undercroft The Undercroft

The View of the Troops The View of the Troops

Trivia[edit | edit source]

"The Lord of the Pies"

  • There is a pie in a top hat under Skyhold that can be discovered through a glitch: Sometimes all the furnishings in the main hall disappear. If you then walk into Solas' rotunda, there will be no floor, and you will drop into the area that holds the lordly pork pie. If you wait for a minute or so, it will also start playing music.
  • In the basement of Skyhold there is a large, open book with a sideways sigil of the gate; this is a reference to the Necronomicon, a fictional grimoire invented by H.P. Lovecraft.
  • A Red Templar standard can be found in the abandoned stairwell leading to the Inquisitor's quarters.
  • Skyhold is described in the files as "Well hidden Mansion Base".[13]

See also[edit | edit source]

Gallery[edit | edit source]

Skyhold Lower Courtyard Map.png
Skyhold Upper Level Map.png
Skyhold WM 06.jpg
Skyhold WM 02.jpg
Skyhold WM 07.jpg
Inquisitor's Quarters.png
Skyhold Blacksmith.png
Skyhold Garden.png
Skyhold Stables.png
Skyhold Front.png
Mage Tower Skyhold.png
DAIII concept 3.jpg
DAI NewHome.jpg

References[edit | edit source]

  1. Codex entry: On Skyhold
  2. Dialogue with the Skyhold Quartermaster explaining Threnn's absence if she was rescued from Haven
  3. Dialogue with Horsemaster Dennet explaining Skyhold's location
  4. In-Game World Map
  5. Note by the Skyhold mason on scaffolding during renovations
  6. As evidenced by the dwarven statues in the basement.
  7. Note: Fallen Chandelier
  8. Dialogue with Morrigan on Skyhold's history and power.
  9. The Art of Dragon Age: Inquisition
  10. According to Donal Sutherland in Dragon Age: Tevinter Nights, Callback
  11. 11.0 11.1 11.2 Dragon Age: Tevinter Nights, Callback
  12. According to Solas in Trespasser (with low approval).
  13. da3/Layouts/InquisitorBase2/MainBase/Description_Win32
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