How to unlock flying in Shadowlands

wow shadowlands flying mount
(Image credit: Blizzard)

Flying in Shadowlands has been available for a while now but if you're returning after a break, you might be wondering how you can take to the skies. With the release of Season 4, the final major update in the current expansion, it makes sense to do everything you can to make getting around a little easier, especially if you're leveling last-minute alts.

With Dragonflight set for release later this year, now is a good time to hop in and start preparing. And as the Mythic+ dungeon pool is changing for this final season, you'll be in the same boat as many other players when it comes to learning the best routes and new mechanics. So without further ado, here's what you need to know about WoW Shadowlands flying, so get ready to dust off those flying mounts and soar through the skies. 

WoW Shadowlands flying: How to unlock it

Once you've reached Renown level 44 and completed the previous Covenant storylines, you'll unlock one of the new campaign chapters, The Last Sigil. The final step in this questline is called The Primus Returns, and completing it rewards you with the 'Memories of Sunless Skies'. Use this item to unlock Shadowlands flying for all the characters on your account.

Where you can fly in the Shadowlands 

Flying has some restrictions due, in part, to the layout of the zones. These are the areas where you can fly:

  • Ardenweald
  • Bastion
  • Maldraxxus
  • Revendreth

If you want to fly in Zereth Mortis, you will need to complete the achievement "Unlocking the Secrets" which involves completing certain storylines from the zone, uncovering the map, and grabbing treasures.

You still need to use a flight master to travel between Covenant zones, as flying isn't allowed in The In-Between. You also can't fly in Oribos, the Maw, and Korthia.

As of patch 9.1, you can use any ground mounts in the Maw and Korthia after completing the quest, 'Who is the Maw Walker?'. This means you no longer need to rely on Maw-specific mounts to get around.

How riding and flying skills have changed in Shadowlands 

The level cap in Shadowlands was squished down to 60, so what does that mean for players levelling in Shadowlands? Alongside restructuring the levels at which you learn new riding skills, the Artisan Riding Skill—previously learned at level 70—has been removed completely. Below, you can see the level requirements for each riding skill in Shadowlands.

  • Apprentice Riding (60% ground speed): level 10
  • Journeyman Riding (100% ground speed): level 20
  • Expert Riding (150% flight speed): level 30
  • Master Riding (310% flight speed): level 40

(Image credit: Blizzard)

Pathfinders from previous World of Warcraft expansions 

Both the Draenor and Broken Isles Pathfinder requirements (from the Warlords of Draenor and Legion expansions respectively) have been removed with the Shadowlands pre-patch. Once you learn Expert riding, you'll automatically be able to fly in these zones without having to earn the Pathfinder achievements first. If you want to fly in Battle for Azeroth zones, however, you'll still need to complete the Pathfinder achievements. 

For completionists, all Pathfinder achievements are still obtainable and still reward the mounts. They're just not required to fly in those zones.

Sarah James
Guides Writer

Sarah started as a freelance writer in 2018, writing for PCGamesN, TechRadar, GamingBible, Red Bull Gaming and more. In 2021, she was offered a full-time position on the PC Gamer team where she takes every possible opportunity to talk about World of Warcraft and Elden Ring. When not writing guides, most of her spare time is spent in Azeroth—though she's quite partial to JRPGs too. One of her fondest hopes is to one day play through the ending of Final Fantasy X without breaking down into a sobbing heap. She probably has more wolves in Valheim than you.