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Isle of Berk (Franchise)

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"This is Berk. It's twelve days north of Hopeless, and a few degrees south of Freezing to Death. It's located solidly on the Meridian of Misery."
Hiccup Horrendous Haddock III[src]

      The Isle of Berk or just Berk is a relatively small island that's the primary setting of the How to Train Your Dragon franchise

This island is home to the many Vikings of the Hairy Hooligan tribe and many dragons as well.

Description

This is Berk, a dragon-friendly utopia jointly led by new chief, Hiccup, and his best friend, Toothless, the reigning Alpha of all dragons. Much has changed on Berk in the five years since Hiccup and Toothless bonded and showed Vikings and dragons alike that coexistence between their species is not just a possibility — it’s the way of the future. The catapults and trebuchets that once dominated Berk’s towers during wartime have now given way to aqueducts, wing-inspired windmills, and Dragon Racing bleachers. Similar changes also occurred beneath Berk’s surface, where a reinforced hangar, complete stables, feeding troughs, and a dragon wash now occupy the old Whispering Death catacombs. Despite Drago Bludvist’s vicious attack on the island, Berk survived the Bewilderbeast’s barrage and emerged from the fray stronger than ever. Now joined by the full compliment of Valka’s flock and the liberated members of Drago’s army, the people of Berk take to the skies on the backs of their dragons to protect their home and spread their message of peace.[1]

Geography

Berk, a small island that's twelve days north of Hopeless and a few degrees south of Freezing to Death (the latter two being either figurative modes of speech or, less likely, actual, comically-named places), is located solidly on the Meridian of Misery in the Barbaric Archipelago

Berk is a rather round island, similar to an oval shape, and it looks quite small on maps. It contains many interesting, geological landforms such as rocky arches and cliffs, beaches, waterfalls, streams and several large forests. There is also a massive cavern under the village which now serves as space for dragon stables.

Climate

"This is Berk, it snows nine months of the year- and hails the other three."
―Hiccup in How to Train Your Dragon
"This is Berk, boasting the kind of balmy fun-in-the-sun climate that will give you frostbite on your spleen."
―Hiccup in Gift of the Night Fury
"Winter on Berk lasts most of the year. It hangs on with both hands and won't let go."
―Hiccup in Gift of the Night Fury
"But it's too early for a storm, it's still winter. Devastating winter isn't due for another month!"
―Hiccup in Animal House
"This is Berk. We've got ice, we've got snow . . . and we've got more ice."
―Hiccup in Cast Out, Part 1

Berk is known to have extremely cold, long winters and short warm summers. However, throughout most episodes and the movie, the weather seems to be clear, yet cold. Very few episodes show the weather as described by Hiccup, as most of the time Berk appears to be green and growing.

This could be more a production limitation, as rendering rain, hail and snow all the time is harder than just clear days and nights.

Notable places

A rather large number of places are introduced around Berk despite its size.

Hooligan Village

Dawn of the Dragon Racers 001

Topographic map of the village of Berk

The Hooligan village is a place where the Vikings of Berk live. The village is filled with large houses with an architectural theme of dragons, and the homes are built on land with a gentle slope. However, these homes had to be constantly reconstructed or repaired after being destroyed during a dragon raid. As shown in How to Train Your Dragon 2, more houses were then destroyed by Drago Bludvist's Bewilderbeast, but were repaired after his defeat.

Great Hall (aka Meade Hall)

Meade Hall banner

The front of the Great Hall in Rise of Berk

A large room with a large circular table at the centre, surrounded by many normal tables. This is where the Vikings gather to plan an attack, communal meals, study (if in Dragon Training), hide during bouts of bad weather (in these instances the dragons and if necessary, farm animals, stay here as well as shown in "Animal House"), or celebrate. On the wall are portraits of all the previous chiefs and their sons, the most recent one being of Stoick and Hiccup as shown in "Portrait of Hiccup as a Buff Young Man". However, in the mobile game Rise of Berk, it is known as the Meade Hall and determines the number of Vikings and dragon capacity on Berk.

Barn

A large barn exists at the base of the cliffs, and in front of it are large pens for the yaks the Vikings domesticated. Chickens, Yak and sheep are also kept here as shown in "Animal House".

Weapon Storehouse / Armory

Obviously, a storehouse for weapons. Apparently there is gunpowder or some other explosive substance inside, which at one point Mildew lit to blow up the Storehouse and frame Toothless as shown in "In Dragons We Trust".

Docks

The Docks in Berk have large individual docks for loading and unloading large cargo into the ships. The docks are built from the large cliff of Raven Point. A wooden walkway is built above the docks to view the ships from. This is where Hiccup stood as he watched the ships sail away to the Dragons Nest as shown in How to Train Your Dragon.

Haddock House

The Haddock house is built on top of the high slope overlooking the entire village. Their house is larger in comparison with other homes. This house is next to the Great Hall.

Main Room

The Main Room is the main room after entering. This room consists of a fire pit mainly used for cooking and heat. Further in is the large dinner table where the Haddocks have their family meals. To the left side are many large steps to the second floor and Hiccup's room. In The Terrible Twos, Stoick is shown to sleep down there.

Hiccup's Room

Hiccup's Room mainly has a wooden bed with patterns carved into the head board. On one post of the foot board is where Hiccup keeps his helmet. At the base of the bed is a small wooden chest. Beside the bed is a table and chair that Hiccup sometimes works at. There is a also a large rock slab that Toothless sleeps on.

Gobber's Blacksmithing Forge

Gobber's Blacksmithing Forge is the main blacksmithing shop of the island and was where the Vikings got their weapons during the dragon raids. The forge is spacious with many weapons inside. Lately Gobber has become a dragon dentist, so he put up a sign above the forge with a tooth on it, though the forge is still used. By the second film, it became the greatly expanded Dragon Armory where Gobber continued to practice his dragon dentistry and has dragon saddles built here[2]. Both Hiccup and Stoick worked here on saddle orders as shown in How to Train Your Dragon 2".

Hiccup's Workshop

Although it's unverified, Hiccup's workshop is located inside Gobber's blacksmithing forge. This is where Hiccup works, on his own time, to build or plan to build things as shown in How to Train Your Dragon.

Mildew's House

A gloomy house built in the shadow of a cliff on the edge of the village, away and out of sight from the other houses. According to Gobber, the Vikings built it there because they find Mildew annoying as shown in "How to Start a Dragon Academy".

Gothi's hut

Gothi's hut in Rise of Berk

Library

The library on Berk has a collection of sources of information and similar resources for the village to use.

Gothi's House

A house built high up on top of a cliff that houses Gothi, the village elder.

Berk Dragon Training Academy

Once the arena where Dragon Fighting class was held, it also housed several dragon species the Vikings had captured for training the younger Vikings to fight. There was a Deadly Nadder (Stormfly), a Hideous Zippleback (Barf and Belch), a Gronckle (Meatlug), a Monstrous Nightmare (Hookfang), and a Terrible Terror (Sharpshot). Toothless was also imprisoned here a short while. It was also used for the purpose of housing the battle between the best of the Dragon Training class and a Monstrous Nightmare as shown in How to Train Your Dragon. Later, Stoick gave Hiccup the arena to use as the Berk Dragon Training Academy, and a sign depicting Toothless was put up over the entrance as shown in "How to Start a Dragon Academy". The dragon cages were kept intact, as the dragons were locked up here when they were causing trouble, and also Stoick's Thunderdrum, Thornado, was locked up here with a muzzle when it was still aggressive as shown in "How to Pick Your Dragon".

Raven Point

As stated in the first film, Hiccup says he shot down a Night Fury that fell just past Raven Point. Raven Point is a mountain peak filled with forests and steep cliffs. At the base of the tallest peak, lay the docks. This is notable because of a large canyon like structure between the tallest peak and another steep cliff.

The Cove

A large sunken area in the forest with rocks, tree roots, and a pond with fish. It was here Toothless crash landed once Hiccup released him, and this was where they gained each other's trust and friendship. The walls are steep enough that Toothless cannot easily get out, though he can if sufficiently motivated, as seen when he escaped to save Hiccup from Hookfang as shown in How to Train Your Dragon. However, Vikings can easily enter and exit. Hiccup occasionally leaves Toothless here when he doesn't want him to go anywhere, as seen when he believes Toothless' aggression around Torch, the baby Typhoomerang, to be a problem and leaves Toothless stranded in the cove as punishment in "The Terrible Twos". Stoick ordered everyone to go the cove when the Speed Stingers attacked in "Frozen".

Dragon Stables (also known as Dragon Hangar)

Isle-of-berk-gallery-1

The hanger on the cliff of Berk

Using the tunnels and caverns that were created and found following the Whispering Death and Screaming Death attacks during the events of "Tunnel Vision", Hiccup and Gobber were able to build the stables with custom stalls for the various dragons. The stables also had storm doors. [2]

Dragon Race Stands

Following the start of Dragon Races, stands were built for the spectators with the chief's chair in the center as shown in How to Train Your Dragon 2.

Caves of Jötunn

These caves were in the bowels of Berk. They were also known as the Underworld. It was here that Captain Fiske had a mining operation where he hoped that the village of Berk would be swallowed up as shown in "Underworld".

In Dragons: Wild Skies

In the video game, DreamWorks Dragons: Wild Skies, you can travel around several areas of the Isle of Berk. It should be noted that these locations have not been seen anywhere else in the franchise, and most of the names originate from the book series.

Berk Village

The village of Berk is an area in Wild Skies which is home to the Vikings of Berk. It has several houses on a cliff, and progresses downwards to the Dragon Training Arena. The village sits on the edge of a cliff facing towards the open ocean, which has many rock formations and arches rising out of the sea. In the sky, large mountains are seen.

Unlandable Cove

Unlandable Cove features a large damp swamp and several small rock formations rising out of the murky water. There are many plants and vines around this area, and the area is very foggy. Tall trees rise out of the ground on islands in the swamp, and many arches and cliffs are scattered around the outer rim of the area. The Deadly Nadder's lair is found in this spot and the Changewing is also found here.

The Great West Ocean

This area's most prominent feature is the large bay in the middle of the area. Many arches, cliffs and rocks are found around the exterior of the area, and large land forms rise out of the middle. Various waterfalls flow from the tops of the islands and land forms into the water below. The area that can be explored on foot has several ramps that lead to higher cliffs. This is where you encounter the Scauldron.

The Woods That Howled

This area features a large forest and many giant land forms. Vines hang from the bottoms of the mountainous land forms, and at the very bottom of the area is a big thick fog. In the ground area, a large lake is found. A huge rock dome with many holes in it can be found sheltered over a cave entrance, which leads to the lair of the Gronckle as well as the Whispering Death.

Lava-Lout Island

This area has various lava pools and lavafalls around it. The main feature is the giant hollow mountain rising up in the middle, which at the very top houses the Monstrous Nightmare and the Smothering Smokebreath. In a circle around the mountain is a lava moat. It also has many spikes and spiky cliffs scattered throughout the area. The first time you enter you need a Zippleback. Sometimes there is a glitch where if you try to enter with a Typhoomerang, it will say that you need different type of dragon to enter but after a while, you are able to enter Lava-Lout Island.

Black Heart Bay

A large bay is found in the middle of the area, which leads into the ocean. Huge islands rise out of the sea, with various trees growing on them. Arches and cliffs circle around the place. The ground area is a woodland area with a very rocky and desert area branching off the side, which leads you straight into the Hideous Zippleback's domain. A very big lake is featured lower into the area, with a gigantic waterfall splashing into it. A cave system is found behind a waterfall.

Wild Dragon Cliff

A very foresty area, Wild Dragon Cliff features many cliffs with trees dotting the tops. A giant lake sits at the bottom of the area, with a large island rising up out of it. A huge waterfall flows into the lake, and up the waterfall sits the entrance to Badmist Mountain. A giant archway rises above the waterfall. There's a crack in the mountainside which leads to the Typhoomerang's home.

Badmist Mountain

A very large area which sits at the top of the Isle of Berk. Many cliffs form a U shape, with the open part of the U facing the open ocean. Several land forms rise up from the barren ground, and a large underground lake can be found in the side of the cliff. This is Toothless' favorite spot on the island, and he can be found in a small alcove of trees on ground level. A wide-spread mist covers up the sky so only a Nightmare can get there the first time you go in due to its huge wingspan.

Wrecker's Reef

A large bay covered in constant snowfall, large spires with bridges connecting to cliff sides dot the area, which is penetrated by a large icy bay. Snow-covered trees are the only foliage. Crabs can be found in the bay. You can locate the Thunderdrum here.

Lifestyle

Berk Crest

The Berk Crest

In the Isle of Berk, most Vikings live in houses built out of wood and do their normal jobs such as patrolling the island, farming, fishing and hunting.

Opportunities

"We have fishing, hunting and a charming view of the sunsets."
―Hiccup[src]
"Any food that grows here is tough and tasteless."
―Hiccup[src]

As a sea-faring people on an island, fishing provides a large source of food for Berk and their dragon companions; known species include cod, salmon, sturgeon, mackerel, tuna and eel. Their animal husbandry includes yaks for milk, fur and beef, sheep for wool and mutton, and chickens for eggs and meat. They have farms that grow vegetables like cabbage, and apparently grow a cereal grain as they regularly have bread. It is known that they hunt the aggressive wild boars that live in the forests for food. They likely also forage for wild fruit and foodstuffs like apples and lingonberries from the forest. As they often wear metal armor and extensively use iron for not just weapons, it is not unreasonable to assume that there is at least one local mine or other readily accessible source, although they have also traded for it at least once.

Dragons are becoming an integral part of Berk, usually providing rapid transportation and companionship. Hiccup's Academy riders, however, are the ones that actively train for air search-and-rescue, scouting and village defense. Under Hiccup's direction, riders have learned to steer the natural instincts of trained dragons to assist with fishing and hunting. After discovering that dragons communally defecate daily at three in the afternoon, riders now use this as a fertilizer application system when appropriate. There are also dragon riders that are part of the local firefighting brigade, carrying carts of water to act as water bombers. This is changed in later years, supplemented by a water delivery system that Hiccup designed which any rider can use by pulling a rope to unleash water onto the building on fire.

Celebrations

"The one upside is our annual holiday. We call it Snoggletog."
―Hiccup

The major annual holiday is called Snoggletog which takes place in late November or December. It is very similar to Christmas, with a structure similar to a Christmas tree put up in the center of the village, decorations are put up, and Viking children leave their helmets out so that Odin can put gifts, or "goodies", in them in Gift of the Night Fury.

In the annual Thawfest games, the vikings test their strength and courage in competition. With dragon riding now involved since the peace, the games take place over a period of at least two days, with a third for tie breakers as shown in "Thawfest".

Another local holiday is Bork Week, celebrating Bork the Bold. As part of it, Stoick had Hiccup and the trainers put on a dragon air parade to celebrate the first Bork Week with the dragons. They also display Bork's archives in the Great Hall.

Another local holiday is Dreadfall, a holiday that is very similar to Halloween. The Meade Hall and the Whispering Death Tunnels are decorated to look like haunted houses, children dress up in costumes, and dragons have designs painted on them or are dressed up in costumes as well. Gobber gathers all of the children around campfires and tell them spooky ghost stories. The Night Terror is often used as a symbol of Dreadfall.

A minor holiday called Stump Day shown in "We Are Family, Parts 1 and 2, celebrates those who have lost their limbs. There was also the Regatta, which was an annual seafaring competition used to calm the Vikings down because, as Stoick stated, "If we're not fighting against something, we're fighting against each other". In other words, it was used to blow off steam and facilitate non-violent competition among the Vikings. Unfortunately, the Regatta became boring and old fashioned due to the slow pace the boats moved. Eventually the dragon riders came up with the idea of dragon racing with Stoick officially announcing the first annual Berk Dragon Race, which have since replaced the Regatta as shown in Dawn of the Dragon Racers.

Another minor holiday is Loki Day, which is the day to celebrate the birthday of Loki, the Viking God of Mischief and Trickery. Vikings commemorate Loki Day by pulling practical pranks and tricks on each other, which is very similar to April Fools Day. It was considered to be the Thorston twins' favorite time of the year, until the other Dragon Riders began to pull practical pranks on them.

Political System

Berk is a Chiefdom. The former chief was Stoick the Vast who lived in the village with his son Hiccup. It also had a Council that discussed things such as Hiccup's search for new dragons and Dagur.[3] It is also an island of equal treatment where both men and women can become soldiers and fight in battles. At the end of the second film, Hiccup becomes the new chief of Berk.

Dragon Species

A large variety of dragon species live on Berk and its surrounding islands. Twenty-one different species and counting have been encountered to date. The only known Night Fury lives on Berk, and the first Typhoomerang was discovered on Berk. Other recently encountered species include the Terrible Terror, Hideous Zippleback, Monstrous Nightmare, Deadly Nadder, Gronckle, Thunderdrum, Boneknapper, Typhoomerang, Scauldron, Fireworm, Whispering Death, ChangewingGrapple Grounder, Rumblehorn, and Hotburple. Timberjacks are known to fly around Berk. At the end of the second movie, the Raincutter, the Scuttleclaw, the Shovelhelm, the Snifflehunch, the Stormcutter, the Snafflefang, the Thunderclaw the Thornridge, and the Windgnasher started to live on Berk as well.

References

External Links

A4320bfb10853844e8d50a3a78b42219 Isle of Berk on Hiccup's Map.

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