If given an option to choose just one person’s travel itinerary, we would go for a fictional character instead of a real-life one. And that would be Tintin. After all, not only did he travel across continents but also had the most unreal adventures! Now, what if we tell you that you can relive that childhood nostalgia of flipping through Tintin comics by visiting the iconic countries from the comics in real life? Yes, we are hyperventilating too! By Shubhanjana Das
Tintin and Snowy seemed to have some kind of a bond with Brussels for they kept going back time and again in Tintin in the Land of the Soviets, The Blue Lotus, The Broken Ear, and many more. Looking at the grandeur of the Belgium capital, we are hardly surprised why Herge chose Brussels as the background for all that was unfolding in the comics. Grand Palace Square, Mannekin Pis, Mini Europe, and the Royal Palace of Brussels are only a few of the captivating attractions in Brussels.
Featuring in Cigars of the Pharaoh, The Blue Lotus, and Flight 714 to Sydney, Egypt and its mysteries undoubtedly lured Tintin to it. Port Said and Cairo seem to have been highlighted as the geographic landscape for his adventures, which gives them an interesting twist, but you could find many more places to get a crash course in Egyptology to understand the nuances of the why and how of the comics. Apart from the Pyramids and the Sphinx, you can visit Alexandria, Giza, Sharm El Sheikh, Hurghada and etc. Once in Egypt, you’ll be able to see for yourself why the East was a constant point of interest for Herge.
This one’s a no-brainer. Tintin in Tibet remains to be one of the most iconic adventures from the whole series and rightfully so! Kathmandu was and always has been a tourist magnet. So how could it not attract one of the most avid travellers that the fictional world has known? The maze-like lanes of Kathmandu’s Durbar Square, the breathtaking valley, the lively markets, and a long list of temples with interesting legends — Kathmandu is a global traveller’s true delight. If it was good enough for Tintin and Snowy, it’s good enough for everyone!
4. New York
Tintin in America saw his adventures unfold in New York and Chicago. Keeping aside Herge’s brilliance when it comes to selecting the landscape for each and every story, it’s not difficult to see why he always placed Tintin in contrasting cultural settings. If Tintin’s America is what is in your mind while visiting USA, you must explore New York and Chicago to see it through the fictitious journalist’s eyes.
The Blue Lotus, one of the most iconic and memorable stories from the Tintin series, panned out in China. Starting from the bustling streets, the local culture and costume, The Blue Lotus gave us all a peek into China even before we had taken our first trip aboard. Strolling through the streets itself — you will be teleported back to your childhood — except that now you can plan out your own adventures in China.