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Gerold the Great

Strongest castles in Westeros

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I'd maybe put Dragon Stone ahead of Pyke; while both fortresses make great use of the water around them, the Greyjoy stronghold is, of course, "crumbling into the sea".  We also have a recent example of the castle walls being effectively breached by King Robert's forces during the Greyjoy Rebellion.

Riverrun has that great, water based, "turn the castle into an island" defense, but other than that I'd have to say Harrenhal might have it beat in terms of sheer defensive focused architecture. With a large, strong garrison, (and no dragons to oppose them), "Black Harren's Hubris" seems like it would be a nightmare for an opposing force to besiege. Hell, the size of the walls alone would put many an enemy off the idea of trying to take the castle by sheer force.

 

Edited by Leo of House Cartel

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6 minutes ago, Leo of House Cartel said:

I'd maybe put Dragon Stone ahead of Pyke; while both fortresses make great use of the water around them, the Greyjoy stronghold is, of course, "crumbling into the sea".  We also have a recent example of the castle walls being effectively breached by King Robert's forces during the Greyjoy Rebellion.

Riverrun has that great, water based, "turn the castle into an island" defense, but other than that I'd have to say Harrenhal might have it beat in terms of sheer defensive focused architecture. With a large, strong garrison, (and no dragons to oppose them), "Black Harren's Hubris" seems like it would be a nightmare for an opposing force to besiege. Hell, the size of the walls alone would put many an enemy off the idea of trying to take the castle by sheer force.

 

I was thinking only about eight greatest houses. We also have recent example of Dragonstone being breached by 2000 Lannister soldiers led by Loras Tyrell. 

Riverrun is strong when compared to castles of lesser lords. 6000 soldiers were besieging Riverrun and Jaime thought that was enough to take it or destroy it. 

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Even in its current state, Moat Cailin has to be somewhere in the top 10. In its former glory, perhaps in the top 3.

Quote

A Game of Thrones - Eddard IV

When the door had closed behind him, Ned turned back to his wife. "Once you are home, send word to Helman Tallhart and Galbart Glover under my seal. They are to raise a hundred bowmen each and fortify Moat Cailin. Two hundred determined archers can hold the Neck against an army. 

The Hightower of Oldtown deserves a spot in the top 10.

 

@Leo of House Cartel totally agree on Harrenhal.

Edited by Legitimate_Bastard

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5 minutes ago, Legitimate_Bastard said:

Even in its current state, Moat Cailin has to be somewhere in the top 10. In its former glory, perhaps in the top 3.

Moat Cailin is completely defenceless from attack from the north and it is terrible for living. 

8 minutes ago, Legitimate_Bastard said:

The Hightower of Oldtown deserves a spot in the top 10.

I agree. It is stronger then Riverrun. 

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2 minutes ago, Gerold the Great said:

Moat Cailin is completely defenceless from attack from the north and it is terrible for living. 

True, Moat Cailin is defenseless from the North, but it has successfully defended the North from Southron invasion for a long long time which is a nifty feat for a ruined castle. Strategically, I think the location within the Neck makes MC one of the most important fortifications in Westeros.

I suppose 'strongest castle' is a bit ambiguous. 

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1 hour ago, Gerold the Great said:

1.Casterly rock(without doubt, Martin said it) 

2.Storm's end

3.Eyrie

4.Highgarden

5.Sunspear

6.Winterfell

7.Pyke

8.Riverrun

Very well.  So you want to discount Harrenhal.  Harrenhal only fell because of Balerion.  I will argue that any of the castles that you listed and all of them in reality, would have fallen to Aegon and his dragon.  

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8 minutes ago, Widowmaker 811 said:

Very well.  So you want to discount Harrenhal.  Harrenhal only fell because of Balerion.  I will argue that any of the castles that you listed and all of them in reality, would have fallen to Aegon and his dragon.  

Harrenhal 300 years ago was in the top 10, Harrenhal of present day not so much.

Harrenhal was vast, much of it far gone in decay. Lady Whent had held the castle as bannerman to House Tully, but she'd used only the lower thirds of two of the five towers, and let the rest go to ruin.

Now it's not so great. 

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Just now, Bernie Mac said:

Harrenhal 300 years ago was in the top 10, Harrenhal of present day not so much.

Harrenhal was vast, much of it far gone in decay. Lady Whent had held the castle as bannerman to House Tully, but she'd used only the lower thirds of two of the five towers, and let the rest go to ruin.

Now it's not so great. 

That may be so.  I was responding to the question based on the castles being in their best shape.  

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24 minutes ago, Widowmaker 811 said:

Very well.  So you want to discount Harrenhal.  Harrenhal only fell because of Balerion.  I will argue that any of the castles that you listed and all of them in reality, would have fallen to Aegon and his dragon.  

OMG, everybody know that Casterly rock can not be taken by dragons. Visenya T. confirmed it!!! 

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16 minutes ago, Widowmaker 811 said:

That may be so.  I was responding to the question based on the castles being in their best shape.  

Harenhal is ruined and it is not the seat of 8 great houses

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2 minutes ago, Gerold the Great said:

OMG, everybody know that Casterly rock can not be taken by dragons. Visenya T. confirmed it!!! 

Any castle can be taken.  There are more ways to penetrate her defenses instead of a direct assault.  

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33 minutes ago, Gerold the Great said:

I was thinking only about eight greatest houses. We also have recent example of Dragonstone being breached by 2000 Lannister soldiers led by Loras Tyrell. 

Riverrun is strong when compared to castles of lesser lords. 6000 soldiers were besieging Riverrun and Jaime thought that was enough to take it or destroy it. 

Both good points, Ser, but I think we should keep in mind that the garrison lead by Roland Storm during the siege of Dragonstone seems to have only been a token force. That Loras Tyrell and some 1000 of the besiegers were apparently slain/injured during the skirmish (according to Aurane Waters, for what it's worth) might suggest that trying to take a fully manned Dragonstone would have been a different matter.

As I mentioned, that Riverrun island trick is awesome, and historically, the castle has never been taken by storm, so probably does deserve a high place on the list.

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I was going to say Greywater Watch, but it's technically not as "strong" as those others castles, but it could be considered as safe because it's harder to find and siege. 

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37 minutes ago, Ralphis Baratheon said:

I was going to say Greywater Watch, but it's technically not as "strong" as those others castles, but it could be considered as safe because it's harder to find and siege. 

Has there ever been a serious effort by an enemy army to try and find and take it? 

The Crannogmen are pretty much isolationists and are dirt poor, there is little reason why any enemy has targeted it. 

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I agree with your top 3. But what do Sunspear and Highgarden have that make them better than Riverrun? Both have three walls sure and Highgarden has the maze but lets be honest here, are either of them more effective than turning the castle into an island? Riverrun, by its very nature, forces besieging armies to split into multiple forces with rivers in between them, isolating them from each other and leaving them wide open to being picked off one by one. For me, if we're discounting prime Harrenhall then Riverrun has to go in at number 4.

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3 hours ago, Leo of House Cartel said:

Both good points, Ser, but I think we should keep in mind that the garrison lead by Roland Storm during the siege of Dragonstone seems to have only been a token force. That Loras Tyrell and some 1000 of the besiegers were apparently slain/injured during the skirmish (according to Aurane Waters, for what it's worth) might suggest that trying to take a fully manned Dragonstone would have been a different matter.

As I mentioned, that Riverrun island trick is awesome, and historically, the castle has never been taken by storm, so probably does deserve a high place on the list.

Not to mention that Dragonstone is composed entirely of dragon constructed fused stone.  Those walls will never break, though they could obviously be scaled and overwhelmed with a weak defending force.

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There is no doubt about Casterly Rock.  Hit that bastard with plague, disease (pale mare), Lay siege to it, Seal it off from the outside World for a decade and then clean up and it is all yours. 

Edited by A Ghost of Someone

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When there are no dragons prime Harrenhall is strongest.They have thickest of wall,never ending water supply,enough sub-terranean vaults to store large amount of food etc.

But,Harrenhal is in ruins,the honour goes to Casterly Rock.

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20 hours ago, Bernie Mac said:

Has there ever been a serious effort by an enemy army to try and find and take it? 

The Crannogmen are pretty much isolationists and are dirt poor, there is little reason why any enemy has targeted it. 

Good point, I agree

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