Way back in Shadows of Angmar days, Rivendell was as far east as you could go, and was the nearest racial port to the "endgame" regions of Angmar and the Ettenmoors. The locations to which one could port often had stablemasters that offered the widest variety of destinations. Thorin's Gate, Bree, and Michel Delving were too far from Angmar or the Ettenmoors to have a direct ride, but Rivendell had both. So at one time, yes, Rivendell was the most useful racial port.
Originally Posted by bifrons
But things have changed. What constitutes a "convenient port" is not about travel or location anymore. In Shadows of Angmar days, one had to actually travel to an instance to enter the instance. (I miss that.) Being conveniently close to the endgame zones was a major benefit, and the fact that Rivendell had all the Shadows-of-Angmar-era vendors was a bonus. However, the world has roughly tripled in size since Shadows of Angmar days. The shape of the world has changed. Rather than a roughly straight line from western Ered Luin to eastern Rivendell, there multiple branches to the world. Instance-Join has nearly eliminated the need to actually visit an instance to enter it. New players are reaching the endgame not ever knowing the glory of Fornost, or of Ost Elendil. Some don't even know how to get there, or even where Fornost and Ost Elendil are located in the world.
These days, what constitutes a "convenient port" is one where there are the most vendors/traders accessible within a short run. New vendors have been added to the game since Shadows of Angmar; Rivendell is not a place where you can find all vendors in one convenient location, as in Galtrev or Caras Galadhon. Certainly, Rivendell has all the important vendors for the Shadows of Angmar era, but vendors like Forge-masters, Relic-masters, and skirmish traders were added later, and not necessarily in the most convenient places. I'm not even sure if Rivendell has a Relic-master at all. (When Mines of Moria released, Rivendell got a Forge-master, but not a Relic-master.)
So with respect to racial ports, none are much more useful than any others after reaching level 50. Instead, one's milestone home is of most importance. It is advantageous to set your milestone to a place where there are lots of vendors within easy reach, and yet the stable-master has a fairly wide variety of destinations. Galtrev is possibly the best place to set your home, if you're interested in vendors. Every vendor is there, including all guild and skirmish traders. Caras Galadhon is a close second, if you are more interested in being anywhere in the world very quickly. CG does not have guild traders, and the skirmish traders are a fairly long horse ride away. However, CG has swift travel to all major hubs in the world, with the exception of most of the old Shadows of Angmar hubs. Instead, CG has swift travel to Rivendell, which in turn has swift travel to most of the Shadows of Angmar hubs. Galtrev has a good selection of swift travel, but does not include places like Moria, Mirkwood, or Stangard (correct me, if I'm wrong). CG has all the Mines of Moria vendors, and if you're a group raider, these are the most important ones (class trainers, crafting area, Relic- and Forge-masters, Auction Hall, Vault, etc.) Once you get your Skirmish soldier and your crafting guild status finalized, these are traders that you won't visit very often, so you won't miss them much.
I found it useful to set my home milestone to CG for quick vendor access, and then I purchased an extra milestone destination to use while I'm running around leveling. Currently, my second milestone is set to the Ox-Clan camp in Isengard. There is no other travel to that camp, so I may need to purchase a third milestone so that I can romp around Rohan, although since I've already gleaned any rewards I wanted from the Ox-Clan camp, I may just ditch it.
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