|This article or section should likely be dramatically changed after the Cataclysm expansion.
Tanaris (aka The Tanaris Desert) is a desert located in Southern Kalimdor, east of Un'Goro Crater and south of Thousand Needles. It is an arid land, covered in sand dunes and frequently exposed to dangerous sandstorms. The Steamwheedle Cartel has its main base of operations here — Steamwheedle Port and Gadgetzan have been founded by the goblins of Undermine since this desert is as close to home as they can get on the continents. The dock in Steamwheedle Port is presumably used for transport to the outer islands, but so far, the goblins have proved unwilling to share the ships with the other races.
The Tanaris Desert has been an endless sea of sand for aeons. Nozdormu, the great dragon of time, was said to make this land his home since time immemorial, thriving in the solitude of oppressive heat and miles of sand.
Tanaris is the ancestral home of the bronze dragonflight based out of the Caverns of Time. The titans also have a holding here in form of an entrance to the ancient land of Uldum, found in the southern parts of the desert. It was here that Anachronos first discovered the full threat of the silithid, who had been making hives in the remote regions of Tanaris. The War of the Shifting Sands was consequently unleashed upon the western land of Silithus.
- Alliance: From Thalanaar, head east through Thousand Needles and south through the Shimmering Flats. Through the mountain pass to the south of the flats lies Gadgetzan.
- Horde: From Freewind Post travel east into the Shimmering Flats, then head south through the mountain pass to Gadgetzan.
The Tanaris Desert covers a vast expanse of Southern Kalimdor, just south of Thousand Needles. It is a blazing hot expanse of rolling sand dunes under a cloudless sky. The southern region is more mountainous, with large cavern networks - some extending deep beneath the surface. A vast realm, the Tanaris Desert holds many secrets. The land is mostly desert, and below the ground are gigantic tunnel networks. They remain largely unexplored, for few have the fortitude to venture into such a harsh landscape. Still, rumors tell of all manner of creatures that hide within the tunnels and slaughter trespassers without hesitation. Although the sea of dunes does not look as if it would support a variety of wildlife, humans, Sandfury trolls, hyenas, scorpids, basilisks, and silithid bugs are quite common. Occasionally, drakes are also seen soaring on the thermals that swirl over the great desert.
Maps and subregions
|Dungeon Name||Level Range||Group Size||Approximate Run Time|
|Caverns of Time: Escape from Durnholde Keep||66-68||5-man||1hr 15 minutes|
|Caverns of Time: Opening the Dark Portal||70||5-man||45 minutes|
|Caverns of Time: Battle for Mount Hyjal||70||25-man||Unknown|
|Caverns of Time: Culling of Stratholme||80||5-man||Unknown|
Flight paths from Gadgetzan
- Thunder Bluff
- The Crossroads, the Barrens
- Camp Taurajo, the Barrens
- Theramore Isle, Dustwallow Marsh
- Brackenwall Village, Dustwallow Marsh
- Thalanaar, Feralas
- Camp Mojache, Feralas
- Marshal's Refuge, Un'Goro Crater
- Cenarion Hold, Silithus
- Ratchet, the Barrens (added in patch 2.1.0)
- Mudsprocket, Dustwallow Marsh (added in patch 2.3.0)
Regions adjacent to Tanaris
|Zone Name||Faction||Level Range||Direction||Access|
|Thousand Needles||25-35||North||By foot or Horde flightpath from Gadgetzan to Freewind Post|
|Un'Goro Crater||48-55||West||By foot or flightpaths from Gadgetzan to Marshal's Refuge|
|Uldum||84-85||Southwest||By foot (access currently blocked by an invisible wall) or by flight path (presumed)|
- Main article: Tanaris NPCs
Tanaris is home to several characters of note. At Gadgetzan, Mux Manascrambler seeks aid in obtaining ghostly ectoplasm from undead spirits, and Senior Surveyor Fizzledowser investigates the coming of the silithid. And at Steamwheedle Port, Yeh'kinya attempts to learn more of the essence of an ancient god...
- Main article: Tanaris quests
CataclysmThis section concerns content exclusive to Cataclysm.
thumb|300px|right|Tanaris in Cataclysm In World of Warcraft: Cataclysm, Tanaris is going to be retuned as level 45-50 zone. In addition the Steamwheedle Port has been destroyed although its still inhabited by goblins. This will make Gadgetzan a port.
- Dunemaul Compound – to the NE is a small Horde camp, the Dunemaul Recruitment Camp
- Eastmoon Ruins – taken by the Southsea Pirates
- Gadgetzan – both flight masters have been brought inside the city; the lands east of here have been flooded and a dock now sits on that side of the city – the boat is functional but the destination hasn’t been set at this time; Southsea Pirate ships form a blockade further out; out the north gate a ship is being constructed
- The Gaping Chasm – on the northern ridge is a neutral quest hub with flight master called Bootlegger Outpost
- Land's End Beach – east of Uldum the mountains have collapsed, connecting that end of the beach to the remainder of Tanaris; a small Alliance camp sits here, Steelspark Beach, manned by Gnomes; further down the beach is a camp of Bilgewater survivors, stranded on the beach
- Lost Rigger Cove – under attack by both Goblin and Gnome forces
- Sandsorrow Watch – cave nearby with large scorpid named Gargantapid; the northern most part of Sandsorrow is now a neutral quest hub
- Southbreak Shore – the Southsea Pirates have extended their camp down the shoreline with more boats and tents
- Southmoon Ruins – south of here is an Alliance quest hub with flight master, Gunstan's Dig; it appears the Horde and Alliance are fighting over the ruins
- Steamwheedle Port – flooded with survivors clinging to tops of buildings
- Thistleshrub Valley – mobs have vanished, but there is a new quest giver here named Adarrah (level 82), and a large stone pathway that is a secondary entrance to the Uldum zone (it is blocked by invisible walls as of build 12319)
- Uldum – the doors are now open
- Valley of the Watchers – SW of here is a Blood Elf Horde hub with a flight master, Dawnrise Expedition
- Waterspring Field - flooded
- Zalashji's Den – though the name still exists, nothing of the cave can be found
- Other – some new mobs can be found here, including elite Dune Worms, Sand Rattlers, and Sand Lashers; due to the flooding of the coast, other areas no longer above water include: Noonshade Ruins and Wavestrider Beach
- New Hunter Pets – Basking Cobra, Sunburst Adder, Dunemaul Broodlord (Scorpid)
- Bog beasts
- Bronze dragons
- Earth Elementals
- Mountain giants
- Sand trolls
- Sea giants
- Water elementals
- Since Alliance players do not have any travel hubs in Thousand Needles, Gadgetzan makes a great alternative to get to Shimmering Flats since it is just a short run over the hill to get there. Even Horde players can benefit from this shortcut as it is even faster than running from Freewind Post.
- There is an alternative route to get to Tanaris that is much quicker for players in Dustwallow Marsh. By traveling to the Theramore Docks, on the eastern coast of Dustwallow, and swimming south, around the mountains that surround Shimmering Flats, you can easily get to Steamweedle Port, so long as you hug the shoreline; failure to do so will result in death by fatigue. This is made much easier using a Swim Speed Potion, a druid's Aquatic form, a shaman's Water Walking or a similar ability.
- ^ Dungeons & Dragons Warcraft The Roleplaying Game, pg. 210-211, 230
- ^ a b Dungeons & Dragons Warcraft The Roleplaying Game, pg. 210
- ^ http://static.mmo-champion.com/mmoc/images/news/2009/august/cataclysmpreviewpanel_046.jpg
- ^ http://forums.worldofwarcraft.com/thread.html?topicId=23425524394&sid=1&pageNo=1
- ^ Frejya’s (MVP) Cataclysm Compilation