Forests in Fantasy, new oddball question


Has Danced with Dragons
Ok, so this is my new weird question for the Forum.

What are the most amazing enchanted forests/woods you'd encountered in fiction, especially (but not only) in fantasy and SF?
And what made the experience of reading about those woods so special?

Mine are: Mirkwood of course, and the Old Wood in the Shire.
What was so special: it gave a profound sense of why woods are enchanting and scary, especially how they drowse people's attention...

Second best is probably Sturdust's forest, especially the version drawn by Charles Vess.

What's yours?
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Journeyed there and back again
There is the forest in Memory, Sorrow and Thorn where elves can find a secret entrance to an Elf city but other people can't. It isn't a doorway or anything but just being an elf or being in the company of elves allows you to pass over into another realm. At least that's what I kinda remember. Someone can correct me if I'm wrong.


Journeyed there and back again
Fangorn is the one that stuck with me from Middle Earth probably because it's where the Ents originated.

There are a lot of awesome fantasy forests but I'm going to have to peak into some of my old books to jog my memory.

Silvion Night

Sir Readalot
Staff member
Nice topic!

Some memorable forests:
- LOTR > Mirkwood and Fangorn. Both have an ancient and mysterious feeling to them.
- Memory, Sorrow and Thorn > Like Khartun said, this one has a nice atmosphere too.
- Malazan > In Blood and Bone you'll find the most broody, sombre and magic-ridden forest you've ever encountered. I really liked the depiction of this forest/jungle.
- Conan the Barbarian > the books by Howard also contain some very atmospheric forests.


Journeyed there and back again
I enjoyed the forest of Alterra in the Elfhunter trilogy by C. S. Marks, one of the regular posters at the Amazon fantasy forum. The series gets very serious about elf civilizations and the threats to them by men and various monsters. The forest of course is their natural homeland and the source of many adventures and elf-lore. Highly recommended and the price is right.

Otherwise the forests of LOTR and The Hobbit are the best. Great topic Gio.


Journeyed there and back again
Haven't read it by I think Mythago Wood series by Robert Holdstock has something to do with enchanted woods?
The clue is kinda in the name... ;)

But yes, it was the first one I thought of. The concept of a forest whose heart is kinda a pocket dimension inhabited by the myths that inhabit humanity's head tickled me pink. Holdstock did a great job of writing it too, the way it changes and the strangeness of being that close to nature for a normal mostly urbanised human.

Other fantasy forests I love

Mossflower - Great place for childlike adventures
Fangorn and the Old Wood for reasons given

Will have to think more on this.

David Sims

Told lies with Locke
There are forests in the Land, in the world created for the Thomas Covenant series by Stephen R. Donaldson. In my opinion, Donaldson left these forests under-developed. He could have done more with them, mysterious things, meaningful things that lend an eerie aura to some of the tale. Monsters seen vaguely in the mist, whose nature is but poorly understood. Entire magical civilizations that are occasionally dimly seen but never entered, until one of its mischievous residents steals your shoes and disappears again.