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Choose your starting zone

Veteran players can start by choosing Exile's Reach or their old starting zone.

Starting areas are where new characters begin their life in World of Warcraft, based on their selection of race or hero class.

Shadowlands introduced a new starting zone available for characters that aren't allied races, death knights and demon hunters, Exile's Reach with a mini-dungeon.

Unlike other classes hero classes begin at a high level in their own special starting areas. Death knights starting off in The Ebon Hold in an instance version of the Eastern Plaguelands or for allied races and panderen at the Frozen Throne. Demon hunters begin in their own special starting experience.

Allied races need to be unlocked and start at level 10 in their own starting areas

Veteran players can start by choosing Exile's Reach or their old starting zone prior to Shadowlands. Players are more or less free to travel wherever they want from these starting location, but it is generally recommended that one complete the character- and race-specific quests in and around the character's starting locations. Worgen, goblins and pandaren start in instanced zones, and do not necessarily follow the same starting area layout patterns as the other races.

Starting areas
Race / Class Zone Area Settlement Second town
Alliance HumanHuman Human Elwynn Forest Northshire Valley Northshire Abbey Goldshire
Alliance DwarfDwarf Dwarf Dun Morogh Coldridge Valley Anvilmar Kharanos
Alliance Night elfNight elf Night elf Teldrassil Shadowglen Aldrassil Dolanaar
Alliance GnomeGnome Gnome Dun Morogh Gnomeregan/Chill Breeze Valley New Tinkertown/Brewnall Village Kharanos
Alliance DraeneiDraenei Draenei Bc icon Azuremyst Isle Ammen Vale Crash Site Azure Watch
Alliance WorgenWorgen Worgen Cataclysm Gilneas Gilneas City Military District Duskhaven
Alliance Class Trial/Character Boost Dragonflight Stormwind City
Neutral PandarenPandaren Pandaren Mists of Pandaria The Wandering Isle Shang Xi Training Grounds Temple of Five Dawns Dai-Lo Farmstead
Neutral Dracthyr / Evoker Dragonflight Forbidden Reach
Horde OrcOrc Orc Durotar Valley of Trials The Den Razor Hill
Horde UndeadUndead Undead Tirisfal Glades Deathknell Deathknell Brill
Horde TaurenTauren Tauren Mulgore Red Cloud Mesa Camp Narache Bloodhoof Village
Horde TrollTroll Troll Durotar Echo Isles Darkspear Training Grounds Sen'jin Village
Horde Blood elfBlood elf Blood elf Bc icon Eversong Woods Sunstrider Isle The Sunspire Falconwing Square/Fairbreeze Village
Horde GoblinGoblin Goblin Cataclysm Kezan/Lost Isles Bilgewater Port KTC Headquarters Shipwreck Shore/Town-In-A-Box
Horde Class Trial/Character Boost Dragonflight Orgrimmar
Death knight Death knight Wrath-Logo-Small (core races, excluding pandaren) Scarlet Enclave Acherus: The Ebon Hold Acherus: The Ebon Hold
Demon hunter Demon hunter Legion (night and blood elves) Mardum, the Shattered Abyss Illidari Foothold The Fel Hammer
Death knight Death knight Battle for Azeroth (pandaren and allied races) Icecrown Frozen Throne
Both 32 All core races Shadowlands (but not hero classes) Exile's Reach Faction specific ship in the North Sea sailing to Exile's Reach
Allied races
Alliance Void elfVoid elf Void elf Telogrus Rift
Alliance Lightforged draeneiLightforged draenei Lightforged draenei The Vindicaar
Alliance Dark Iron dwarfDark Iron dwarf Dark Iron dwarf Blackrock Mountain Blackrock Depths
Alliance Kul TiranKul Tiran Kul Tiran Tiragarde Sound Boralus
Alliance MechagnomeMechagnome Mechagnome Mechagon Island Mechagon City
Horde NightborneNightborne Nightborne Suramar Nighthold
Horde Highmountain taurenHighmountain tauren Highmountain tauren Highmountain Thunder Totem
Horde Mag'har orcMag'har orc Mag'har orc Orgrimmar Valley of Honor
Horde Zandalari trollZandalari troll Zandalari troll Zuldazar Dazar'alor
Horde VulperaVulpera Vulpera Orgrimmar Valley of Honor


  • Portals for the allied race starting areas can be found in front of the Stormwind Embassy or Orgrimmar Embassy, only visible to the specific allied race.
  • All starting areas have one small village, outpost, or town with trainers for all classes and are available to the race(s) that controls the area. There are no profession trainers or inns in starting areas; however, when a starting player first uses their Inv misc rune 01 [Hearthstone], they are teleported back to the main settlement in the area. Once the player changes where their hearthstone is set, they cannot change it back to the starting area.
  • All starting areas are protected by Elite guards 5 levels above the current level cap, though quest givers in starting areas are not flagged for PvP and may not be killed by enemy players, even on PvP servers. This is in order to prevent enemy players from killing beginning quest givers and preventing new characters from playing the game. New player characters may still be killed, however, but the extremely powerful guards make sure the enemies do not stay long.
  • Starting areas often contain a substantial amount of lore, and involve numerous storylines during which characters may find their place in the world and among their people. Each class' early quests also tend to define a character's role and the nature of the class.

Patch changes[]

  • Shadowlands Patch 9.0.1 (2020-10-13): Most starting zones now scale 1-30. Initial starting areas now scale 1-10.
  • Battle for Azeroth Patch 8.2.5 (2019-09-24):
  • Legion Patch 7.3.5 (2018-01-16): Starting zones that had a level range of 1 - 10 now scale from level 1 - 20.
  • Warlords of Draenor Patch 6.0.2 (2014-10-14): Classic starting areas (levels 1 - 10) received a number of improvements to the tutorial, quests, and mob tuning to provide a smoother starting experience.