Cities are special explorable zones characterised by a total lack of hostile NPCs, Renown Hearts, skill challenges and dynamic level adjustment. Fast traveling to the zone's waypoints is free while in the city. Special dynamic events can still occur in cities, such as during Wintersday or Halloween.
 Capital cities
Each of the playable races has a capital city, which is the first city that characters of each respective race will visit during the game. Large portion of every character's personal storyline plays in their capital city, often within their own home instance.
- Asura – Rata Sum – the greatest aboveground city and current capital of the asura, a magical construction that floats high above Maguuma Jungle
- Charr – Black Citadel – home of the Iron Legion and base of operations of the three High Legions in Ascalon
- Human – Divinity's Reach – the royal seat of Kryta and largest human settlement in northern Tyria ever since the flooding of Lion's Arch
- Norn – Hoelbrak – originally established by the legendary norn hero Asgeir Dragonrender, the great lodges here serve as home, refuge and trade hub for many norn
- Sylvari – The Grove – a city built in the trunk of the Pale Tree, mother of sylvari in Tyria
 The Free City of Lion's Arch
In addition to the capital cities of the playable races, there is also Lion's Arch, the central trade and cultural hub of Tyria. Each of the other cities has an asura gate leading there, and there are five additional asura gates in Fort Marriner which lead to the different PvP areas.