Well-Known Member
Tolkien once said that Men awoke in Mesopotamia, so I tried to find pictures there. Tigris and Euphrates seem to be too developed, so I mostly have photos of the Jordan River. These riverbanks have the advantage of plenty of vegetation to cover people below the waist.

There is only one shot taking place in Hildorien, but I'm posting several potential places.

Here are videos of the Jordan that I like but don’t know how to embed:

Jordan River photos:

A photo that won't embed: https://azb.wikipedia.org/wiki/فایل:20100923_mer_morte13.JPG
from the website https://azb.wikipedia.org/wiki/اوردن_چایی

banks of the Hasbani River (Jordan basin):

Jordan River again: I like the feeling here of being in an oasis within a more arid landscape.

Another, less vegetated part of the Jordan River:

This is Nahal Soreq, Israel:

In Mesopotamia itself, this is a river named Batman. I don’t like this as much as the others:


Staff member
One advantage of a Mesopotamia-like setting (aside from the Biblical parallel) is that it will clearly be *somewhere else* and look nothing like the rest of Beleriand. We need it to look foreign/exotic for that reason alone. In just a brief shot, we have to be clearly far, far away. For that reason, I like the Jordan River as a suggested locale for Hildorien.

If not Mesopotamia, I would suggest the Great Rift Valley of the Horn of Africa. It is the historic birthplace of humanity (no big deal), but again has a lush tropical look that will clearly read as 'far away':

Lake Awassa (Ethiopia):

Rift Valley (Kenya):

Ngorongoro Crater (Tanzania) - sunset

Obviously, I'm not suggesting we include hippos, but I do think it would be great to have 'bird chatter' in the background of this brief scene. Again, if we use birds that we never hear in Beleriand...it helps to set the scene.


Well-Known Member
The "less vegetated" Jordan picture might be hard to tell apart from Beleriand's meadows. Maybe Nahal Soreq, too.

I finally found pictures of the Jordan River with palm trees visible, which could help make it look non-Beleriandic (the telephone poles and hiking paths would have to be hidden, though).

And a lovely sunset. (I don't know if sunrise in the West looks more like normal dawn or like normal dusk.)