In Cascade Kingdom, there is an empty portrait hidden behind the waterfall. When walking up to it, Cappy wonders to himself what the portrait might be used for.

I later found a second empty portrait in Sand Kingdom on the side of a tower.

What do these empty portraits do? Is there some way to interact with them?

2 Answers 2


As far as I can tell, portraits are warps to other worlds, usually to snag a power moon. At this time I'm not sure what activates a portrait (previously I thought you had to beat or visit a world to unlock it).

  • 4
    They are definitely portals, and you don't have to beat the world on the other side to activate them. I went through the portal in the lower screenshot of the question, and I haven't even started the world on the other side. I had finished the sand kingdom before I found it though.
    – Adeese
    Commented Oct 28, 2017 at 4:13
  • I'm not sure what the pre-req to unlock them is in that case, the game is never very forthcoming about it. Would appreciate a tip. I finished all the worlds today, so will be going through them one by one and finding the specific details of each world.
    – Seiyria
    Commented Oct 28, 2017 at 4:35
  • 1
    @Adeese I can confirm that the Sand portrait let me preview New Donk City before I had unlocked the level. The Cascade portrait is still empty however.
    – Stevoisiak
    Commented Oct 28, 2017 at 14:41
  • 1
    Definitely don't need to beat the area to use the picture. I got to Luncheon Kingdom in one of the earlier worlds (whatever the first water one is), and got to Mushroom Kingdom early as well.
    – JMac
    Commented Oct 29, 2017 at 15:22
  • 1
    @Seiyria Cascade’s portrait was still empty for me after clearing Sand Kingdom, while New Donk City’s portrait unlocked after the first story mission. (Saving Pauline’s city)
    – Stevoisiak
    Commented Oct 29, 2017 at 16:32

They are hidden portraits, which are portals to a hidden place in the game.

For the hidden portraits to unlock you usually need to beat the Kingdom Boss, or at least that's what these two articles say.



  • I'm not sure how accurate that articles information is. For example; I'm pretty convinced that the portal in the Lake Kingdom took me to the Luncheon kingdom, not the Sand Kingdom. I also went to the Lake Kingdom after the Wooded (which it seems as though in the first article they went the other order). I don't think I found a portrait in the Wooded Kingdom.
    – JMac
    Commented Oct 31, 2017 at 19:36

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