How far did the main characters travel in Game of Thrones?
The journeys, too, are an important element of the show. Arya and the Hound traversing the hills on foot as captor and victim (and occasionally as allies), Daenerys blazing through the skies on top of a dragon, Tyrion’s relentless quips as he’s transported via box, horse, and ship across the seven kingdoms – getting there is almost as entertaining as when they finally arrive.
But something changed in seasons 6 and 7. The journeys, instead of being an integral part of the show, were snipped to outrageously short transition shots that would have previously spanned several episodes.
This shift in timekeeping didn’t go unnoticed by the media or the public at home, with many people questioning when this ‘fast travel’ concept arrived, and if the ramped-up timeline had a detrimental effect on the pacing of the show.
Here at megabus, we’re all about the excitement of a new journey, which got us thinking, just how far did the characters travel in Game of Thrones? And when did this ‘fast travel’ phenomena really begin?
We didn’t re-watch the entirety of Game of Thrones (unfortunately) to chart the journeys of the major characters. But we did a quick bit of analysis using pre-existing research from Reddit user Imperial_Affectation, we spent a long period building up the distances between all the major landmarks in the series, then converting the travels of the major characters into miles.
Using this method, we were able to estimate the distances in miles of 10 major characters: Theon, Jon, Daenerys, Tyrion, Davos, Brienne, Littlefinger, Jaime, Arya, and Sansa.
Who travelled the most?
Daenerys would be an obvious guess, but it’s actually Theon Greyjoy who tops the travelling list, as his frequent trips to and from the Iron Islands – not to mention his epic voyage to Volantis in season 6 – make his total miles travelled slightly higher than the Mother of Dragons, at 20,387 miles.
Here are the top ten characters in order:
- Theon – 20,387 miles
- Daenerys – 19,714 miles
- Tyrion – 15,813 miles
- Davos – 15,058 miles
- Jon – 11,615 miles
- Brienne – 10,920 miles
- Littlefinger – 10,447 miles
- Jaime – 9,337 miles
- Arya – 7,132 miles
- Sansa – 6,024 miles
The above graphic gives a season-by-season breakdown along with the total miles travelled. As we can see, season 7 accounts for a huge number of the total travelled miles, with numerous parties zipping around the map at incredible speeds to keep the plot moving along at lightning pace.
When did ‘fast travel’ really begin?
Season 7 was the first time that the ‘fast travel’ phenomena really came to a head in Game of Thrones, grabbing attention from across the media with fans spotting the seemingly incredible speeds characters can now travel at (we'll have to wait until 2018 to see if the trend continues in season 8).
For example, in episode 7 of last season, "The Dragon and the Wolf", Daenerys travels an incredible 2,600 miles in a single episode, more than twice the distance Arya travels in the entirety of season 3.
What if they took a megabus instead?
A question that (naturally) came to us here at megabus: what if they traded in their horses, ships, and occasional dragon for something convenient, affordable, and comfortable? For the sake of argument, let’s say, a megabus?
How long would it take?
Well, we can work that out. If we use Edinburgh to London as a comparison, the 407-mile journey takes, on average, 8 hours and 25 minutes to complete. So, if we divide the number of miles by the time the journey takes, we reach around 1.2 minutes per mile.
If we multiply this figure by the 126,449 miles travelled throughout the entirety of Game of Thrones, we can predict that all of the journeys combined would take 153,789 minutes if taken using a megabus, or 2,563 hours and 15 minutes.
If we use this theory on a single journey, when Jon Snow travels the 650 miles from Winterfell to Castle Black in season 1, and use a horse’s average walking speed of 4 miles per hour, this journey should take 162 hours and 30 minutes. On a megabus, this journey would take just 13 hours and 17 minutes, making the journey times much more believable!