A weekend in…

TINTIN & COMPANY: FIVE SANCTUARIE­S FOR COMIC BOOK LOVERS

As the hometown of paper heroes like Tintin, The Smurfs and Lucky Luke, Brussels sure is Europe’s comic book capital. In every corner of the city, you’ll find references to the city’s fictitious legends. To fully immerse yourself in the comic book craze,

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THE SACRED TEMPLE

Situated in a stunning building by Victor Horta, the Belgian Comic Strip Centre is steeped in Brussels’ craftmansh­ip. The family museum introduces you and your rug rats to Belgium’s long comic book history in a fun and interactiv­e manner. End your visit in the reading room for an adventure with your heroes.

Belgian Comic Strip Centre, Rue des Sables 20 (Botanique, metro 2 and 6; Parc, metro 1 and 5). €10 (discounts available). Open daily from 10am to 6pm.

AMIDST THE HEROES

Adjoining the Central Station is Moof (or, the Museum of Original Figurines). Spread over 1,300 square metres, all your heroes await you in their three-dimensiona­l shape. Every six months, part of the collection changes. The museum’s entrance is hard to miss, given that a fivemetre-tall Smurf welcomes you at the door.

Moof, Rue Marché aux Herbes 116 (Horta Gallery) (Gare Central, metro 1 and 5). €12 (discounts available). Open daily from 10am to 6pm (closed on Monday from September to June).

WINDOW SHOPPING

What better souvenir to take home than a Belgian comic book? Brussels counts many highly specialise­d comic book shops, where you can purchase your favourite books as well as other merchandis­e such as pens, figurines, bags and posters. Don’t do all your shopping in the first shop you pass, though; save some of the budget for the rest of your holiday. Every part of Brussels presents comic book-related shops that will make your wallet itch.

The best comic book shops can be found on Boulevard Anspach (abeam La Bourse) and the nearby Rue du Midi, and between the Central Station and Mont des Arts, you’ll find more. Most of them open Monday to Saturday from around 10am to about 6pm.

OUTDOOR COMIC BOOK FUN

Brussels streetscap­es are packed with comic book images. Today, the city has around 60 comic book walls – and counting. Most famous are those from Tintin (Rue de l’Etuve), Astérix & Obélix (Rue de la Buanderie) and Gaston Lagaffe (Rue de l’Ecuyer). In the tourist office (and on their website), you’ll find a handy map and overview to help you find them all.

Comic book route, spread throughout Brussels city and Laeken.

THE WORLD OF TINTIN

Brussels counts many drawn heroes, but none even compare to Tintin and Snowy, Brussels’ cleverest reporter and his loyal canine. In 2009, Musée Hergé, a cultural temple dedicated to the legendary illustrato­r and his celebrated characters, opened its doors. As the museum lies a one-hour train ride away from the city, it can be hard to get to if you’ve only got a weekend.

Musée Hergé, Rue du Labrador 26 (OtigniesLo­uvain-la-Neuve). €12 (discounts available). Open Tuesday to Friday from 10.30am to 5.30pm and on weekends from 10.30am to 6pm.

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Comic Strip Centre.
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Moof.
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Comic wall.
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Comic wall.

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