Water Tribe emblem

The North Pole is the northernmost point on Earth and a site of great spiritual importance to the Northern Water Tribe. Located at the center of the pole is an ancient forest containing a portal to the Spirit World, which was reopened by Avatar Korra in 171 AG.[1]


Millenia before the Hundred Year War, on the eve of Harmonic Convergence, Vaatu traveled to the North Pole in order to cross over to the Spirit World and battle Raava for the fate of the world. After the battle ended in Raava and Wan's favor, the latter sealed the portal, preventing any human from physically traveling to the Spirit World and freeing Vaatu.[2]

Zuko carries Aang

Zuko carried Aang through the tundras of the North Pole.

After abducting Aang from the Spirit Oasis during the Siege of the North in 100 AG, Zuko sought refuge in the tundras of the North Pole, where he was eventually found by a search party consisting of Katara, Sokka, Yue, and Appa. Following a short battle between Zuko and Katara, in which the latter swiftly defeated the firebender, the group left the tundra to aid in defending the Northern Water Tribe from Zhao and his forces.[3]

Decades after the end of the Hundred Year War, Yakone frequently brought Noatak and Tarrlok deep into the arctic tundra, under the guise that they were going on hunting expeditions. In reality, he revealed his true identity as a crime lord from Republic City and forced his children to learn the art of bloodbending by practicing on wild fauna, including yaks and wolves.[4]

Following the outbreak of the barbarian invasion in 151 AG, a small fighting force consisting of warriors and waterbenders led by General Tonraq launched a counterattack against the barbarians, overwhelming the invasion force and subsequently forcing them to retreat into the harsh tundras of the North Pole.

The destroyed northern spirit forest

Tonraq's men had to escort the captured barbarians from the spirit forest in the North Pole.

The marauders fled to a sacred spiritual forest per Unalaq's advice, under the belief that the warriors would not attack on sacred grounds. However, this was not the case, and the barbarians were swiftly defeated by Tonraq's men, who managed to subdue the invasion force with the use of waterbending. The confrontation resulted in the destruction of the spirit forest, and all captured barbarians were brought back to the capital. Angered by the destruction of the forest, several spirits attacked the Northern Water Tribe following the apprehension of the barbarians, but were pacified by Unalaq, who guided them back into the forest.[5]

Two years after the insurrection of the Red Lotus, a still emotionally scarred Korra traveled to the North Pole in order to enter the Spirit World and visit the Tree of Time via the northern portal.[6]


Polar climate in tundra

The North Pole is frequently subject to harsh, intolerable blizzards that make it virtually uninhabitable.

A massive stretch of arctic tundra covers most of the North Pole. The inland tundra is mostly mountainous and inhabited by diverse fauna. The valleys of arctic mountain ranges also host small settlements, such as Yakone's village.[4]

In contrast, the coastal arctic plains are highly treacherous. Only skilled arctic hunters travel on the open plains, but only stay for short periods of time. Heavy winter blizzards constantly pelt the tundra, and unstable ice sheets often give way under the slightest pressure. Even experienced waterbenders and warriors think twice before venturing into this environment.[7]

An ancient forest containing a portal to the Spirit World is located in the center of the North Pole, which can be opened during the solstices by the Avatar. Although the portal remained sealed until 171 AG, strong spiritual energy in the North still prompted spirits to dance in the skies, causing the celestial phenomenon known as the northern lights. Although the spirit forest was flooded out by Tonraq's forces in 151 AG, it remains completely thawed, providing a sharp contrast to the surrounding tundras, which remain largely intolerable even to locals acclimated to polar conditions.[3]


Notable figures


  • The trees within the sacred forest were based on bristlecone pine trees, some of the oldest organisms on Earth.[8]


  1. Hedrick, Tim (writer) & Graham, Ian (director). (November 8, 2013). "A New Spiritual Age". The Legend of Korra. Season 1. Episode 22. Nickelodeon.
  2. Hedrick, Tim (writer) & Graham, Ian (director). (October 18, 2013). "Beginnings, Part 2". The Legend of Korra. Season 1. Episode 20. Nickelodeon.
  3. 3.0 3.1 Ehasz, Aaron (writer) & Filoni, Dave (director). (December 2, 2005). "The Siege of the North, Part 2". Avatar: The Last Airbender. Season 1. Episode 20. Nickelodeon.
  4. 4.0 4.1 DiMartino, Michael Dante, Konietzko, Bryan (writers) & Dos Santos, Joaquim, Ryu, Ki Hyun (directors). (June 23, 2012). "Skeletons in the Closet". The Legend of Korra. Season 1. Episode 11. Nickelodeon.
  5. Hamilton, Joshua (writer) & Graham, Ian (director). (September 13, 2013). "The Southern Lights". The Legend of Korra. Season 1. Episode 14. Nickelodeon.
  6. DiMartino, Michael Dante (writer) & Graham, Ian (director). (October 10, 2014). "Korra Alone". The Legend of Korra. Season 2. Episode 15.
  7. From older Avatar: The Last Airbender official site, originally on (link). No longer updated, encyclopedia now broken though archived here.
  8. The Legend of Korra—The Art of the Animated Series, Book Two: Spirits, page 35.

See also

Start a Discussion Discussions about North Pole

  • Polar Regions in Avatar vs. Our world

    27 messages
    • This biggest thing that bothered me about the Avatar World was the fact that the seasons are the same in the northern and southern hemispher...
    • Wow. That really helps my understanding of the eclipse considerably, and without the moon going on a rollarcoaster across the sky. I have to th...