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Fiction tourism aims at locations famous from literature, motion pictures, television series, video games, comic books and other media. Among featured destinations are film sets, other shooting locations, TV or motion picture studios, theme parks, and museums.

Some of these have guided tours and other organized hospitality for fiction tourists.

Specific works, franchises and genres


While series such as Breaking Bad and The Wire mostly take place within one city, others are spread out across a country, or even several continents.

Multiple media

Alice in Wonderland, Wales, UK
Winnie the Pooh's Hundred Acre Wood in literary tourism is Ashdown Forest's Five Hundred Acre Wood near Hartfield, UK.





TV shows


Board games


Carcassonne is a French city that was fought over in the 13th century during the Crusade against the Cathars; much of the medieval city has been preserved and today it is a popular tourist destination. There is a board game called Carcassonne; it emphasizes development of the countryside, not battles. Some visitors bring a copy to play in the location, perhaps in the shadow of the city wall.

Our articles on Board games, Chess, Go, Shogi (Japanese chess), Xiangqi (Chinese chess) and Monopoly have links to sites associated with those games. The musical Chess takes place in Merano in Italy; an earlier version in Bangkok in Thailand as well.


Map of Fiction tourism



The Namibian desert is the shooting location of the 2015 film Mad Max: Fury Road

  • 1 Soweto in Johannesburg. District 9 was filmed in South Africa in the townships of Soweto, though the actual area they filmed in was set to be demolished (that's why they were able to blow up parts of it for the film).
  • 2 Matmata (Tunisia). Scenes of the desert planet Tatooine in a number of Star Wars films were filmed here. Also see the nearby town of Tataouine, where a little filming was also done.


  • Hong Kong: The city's narrow streets and neon lights influenced various cyberpunk-topic fictions, most notably the Ghost in the Shell series.
  • Mumbai, India: The home of Bollywood.
  • Yongin, Miryang and other locations around South Korea are visited by domestic and international fans of K-drama shot there.
  • Kaiping, in southern China, is known for its UNESCO-listed "castles", strange houses built by overseas Chinese. It was the setting for the hit Chinese movie Let the Bullets Fly.
  • Many films about the Vietnam War have been shot in the Philippines, mostly in Luzon. Apocalypse Now was mostly filmed in Zambales, and Chuck Norris' Missing in Action movies were mostly filmed near Cuenca, Batangas.
  • 1 Super Nintendo World, Konohana Ward, Osaka, Japan. An entire theme park dedicated to Super Mario, based on the visual style of Super Mario 3D World. It's based inside Universal Studios Japan.
  • Kyoto is home to many of Japan's film studios, and Toei's outdoor set where Samurai movies are filmed may be visited.


Fans of the world's most famous agent will immediately recognize this building

Nordic countries

See also: Nordic Noir
  • 3 Stockholm, Sweden. The setting of many films, including the Millennium series, the Martin Beck franchise, and Let the Right One In. See Stockholm in fiction.
  • 4 Ystad, Sweden. Home of Detective Wallander.
  • 5 Copenhagen, Denmark. Denmark's capital is known for its diverse architecture (including a 21st century waterfront), and is the location of crime stories, such as the Pusher series, The Killing, and The Bridge.
  • 2 Hans Christian Andersen Museum, Copenhagen, Denmark. A museum dedicated to the city's most famous son, author and poet Hans Christian Andersen, most famous for his fairy tales and in particular The Ugly Duckling and the Little Mermaid. Part of the museum is located in the house where Andersen was supposedly born (though he would never confirm it). The impressive collection is mainly documents from his life and times, period furniture, and many drawings and paper clippings he is famous for at home.
  • 3 Moomin World, Naantali, Finland. One of Finland's most popular theme parks, dedicated to Tove Jansson's lovable Moomin characters. Moomin World (Q1807595) on Wikidata Moomin World on Wikipedia

Central Europe

  • 6 Salzburg, Austria. Home of the classic musical Sound of Music, though most locals and most Austrians have never heard of it.
  • Görlitz is one of the few cities in Central Europe with an old town that looks convincingly "pre World War II" and as such many movies set in that era have been made here since the 1990s.
  • Munich is home to the Bavaria Film Studios where both German and international films have been shot. Also, probably half of the many German crime drama series take place in Munich.
  • Babelsberg, a suburb of Berlin and administratively part of Potsdam also has film studios where, among others, one of the longest running German soap operas ("Gute Zeiten schlechte Zeiten" aka GZSZ) is shot.
  • 4 Castle Frankenstein (Darmstadt). It is a hilltop castle near Darmstadt in Mühltal. The castle is first mentioned in the records in the year 948, and construction of the castle began in the 13th century. It was owned by the Barons von Frankenstein who owned most of the surrounding land until 1662, when the Baron of that time sold the property to the Landgrave of Hesse-Darmstadt. There have been claims that the castle may have inspired the Mary Shelley novel, Frankenstein. While Shelley is known to have travelled through this area in 1814, historical scholars believe that she did not visit this castle. There are special dinners for Halloween and for other occasions. It is also possible to hike up to the castle.
  • The scenery of Switzerland has been used in many Indian movies of the past 50 years, with the mountains, forests and lakes serving as the background for many songs, scenes and even entire films. For example, Dilwale Dilwale Le Jaayenge (DDLJ), the famous film commonly cited as inspiring Switzerland as the premier destination for Indian movie shoots, had scenes shot in Gstaad and Saanen, with other movies quickly following suit. The soaring peaks and small towns on the Bernese Highlands make the region particularly popular for filmmakers and tourists alike.

Britain and Ireland

  • London: See Literary London for complete coverage.
    • While the James Bond series have been filmed all around the world, all of them also feature London — at the very least the MI6 headquarters. Also, countless other British and non-British movies and tv-series take place and have been filmed in London.
Braveheart, 1995
Braveheart, 1995
  • Braveheart was recorded in Scotland (Glencoe, Stirling, Loch Leven and Glen Nevis) as well as Ireland.
  • Game of Thrones was shot mainly around Belfast.
  • The BBC equivalent of that one rock in Southern California (see below) is Harriet Hole in Dinorwic Slate Quarry in Wales, where according to one probably apocryphal account two series were shot at the same time without either production knowing of the other, thus the two got in the way of each other.
Globe theatre london
Globe theatre london
  • Stratford-upon-Avon has five sites closely associated with Shakespeare. A combi-ticket (called "The Full Story") is best value and they can all be seen in the course of an afternoon. Three are central: Shakespeare's birthplace on Henley Street is the obvious starting point. In later life he bought a house at New Place - it's long been demolished, but you visit to see the garden there, and the adjoining Nash's House where his grand-daughter Elizabeth lived. His daughter Susanna married Dr John Hall, and Hall's Croft was their house. A mile west in the hamlet of Shottery is Anne Hathaway's Cottage, where she grew up before marrying Shakespeare. Three miles west in Wilmcote is Mary Arden's Farm, childhood home of Shakespeare's mother. His plays are regularly performed at the Royal Shakespeare Theatre in the centre of Stratford.
Portmeirion view of central plaza
Portmeirion view of central plaza
  • 5 Portmeirion Village (Portmeirion is 1 ½ miles south of Porthmadog). Portmeirion was created by the architect Clough Williams-Ellis from 1925 to 1976. The location of the cult 1960s TV series The Prisoner. It was also a stand-in for 15th-century Italy in Doctor Who: The Masque of Mandragora.
  • 6 The National Videogame Museum, Sheffield, United Kingdom. Not to be confused with the other National Videogame Museum in Frisco, Texas.


  • Paris, one of the world's most prominent cities, has been the backdrop of many films, both French and international. It was also in Paris the world's first public movie screening took place in 1895.
    • 7 Boris Lumé Boulangerie (Paris, France). A traditional bakery, located in the Montmartre region of Paris, which became famous by being portrayed as the home of Marinette and her family in the popular animated series Miraculous: Tales of Ladybug & Cat Noir
    • 8 Boulangerie Moderne (Paris, France). This typically Parisian bakery became famous thanks to the first season of the Netflix series Emily in Paris.
    • 9 Café de Deux Moulins (Paris, France), +33142549050. A traditional French café, located in the Montmartre region, in Paris, which became famous for being the location of the French film Amélie.


  • What does a fictional Apache chief that was dreamed up by someone from Radebeul, Saxony have to do with Croatia? Well, when the works of Karl May about Old Shatterhand, Winnetou and all the others were put to film by German companies, they found that (then) Yugoslavia was much cheaper than the actual Llano Estancado and people in their target audience would neither notice or care, so the site of Winnetou's death is indeed to be found in Croatia, Trogir looks a lot like the Santa Fe of the third movie and when going through Plitvice Lakes National Park you might find the heroes of your youth come back to life. To add yet another wrinkle, the very successful early 21st century parody on the Karl May movies "Der Schuh des Manitu" ("The shoe of Manitou") was shot in neither the Balkans nor North America but instead in Spain.





New Zealand


North America



  • The seaside town of Acapulco is where some episodes of the Mexican TV series El Chavo del Ocho and El Chapulín Colorado were recorded in the 1970s.
  • Puerto Vallarta is famed for the filming of the Night of the Iguana in 1963 and later also the filming locations of Herbie goes Bananas (1980); Predator (1987) among other movies.

10 Hotel Emporio Acapulco (Acapulco, Guerrero). Two episodes of the Mexican TV series El Chavo del Ocho and one episode of El Chapulín Colorado were recorded inside this hotel in the Mexican city of Acapulco in 1977. The destination has become very popular with tourists from Hispanic America and Brazil.

United States


The fiction of the Old West is set all across the western United States - shooting locations of Western movies often included places far away from the US, for monetary or political reasons.

  • Colorado Springs, Colorado — The Cheyenne Mountain Air Force Station was the location of the Terran stargate! The stargate is located underneath the former North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) headquarters.
  • Devils Tower National Monument, Wyoming — Made famous in Spielberg's Close Encounters of the Third Kind as a site of first contact, transmitted psychically to abduction victims.
Leo Carrillo Beach, the backdrop for many film and TV scenes

In California, they don't throw their garbage away - they make it into TV shows.Woody Allen

California in general has been (and continues to be) used for many films given that it is the center of the American mainstream film industry and offers a wide variety of different landscapes that can be used to represent different environments; for example, one rock in Southern California has reportedly been used as a backdrop in dozens of incredibly varied movies.

  • Los Angeles is quite arguably the greatest place in the world for cinema tourism, being the home to Hollywood and the backdrop for countless movies; so many that it would be absurd to try and list even just the most famous ones here. Besides the touristy district of Hollywood, with its star-lined Walk of Fame, numerous old theaters and iconic signs, most of the active film and television studios are located in adjacent communities, such as Burbank, the home of Warner Brothers, Disney, and NBC-Universal, Century City, headquarters of 20th Century Fox, Culver City with its historic film studios, and Fairfax, home to CBS' main television studio. Many of these studios offer tours and with careful planning it is possible to obtain tickets to a taping of a television show. The Los Angeles area is also home to theme parks such as Universal Studios and Disneyland, both large-scale celebrations of their company's respective films. Throughout the Greater Los Angeles area a number of private homes, (non-film) businesses, schools, college campuses, malls, hospitals and parks have been used as settings or backdrops for various movies and television programs while what went on inside may have been filmed inside these buildings, back at the studio or at another location. An example is Torrance High School which served as the fictional "West Beverly High School" for the TV Series Beverly Hills 90210 and from 2008 to 2013 as "Ulysses S. Grant High School" in The Secret Life of the American Teenager among other movies such as The Wild Life, Not Another Teen Movie, Whatever It Takes, Cursed, Wild Things 3, and Bruce Almighty. A lot of these settings including this high school and many private homes used in movie and TV shoots are at most viewable from the street and cannot be visited by the public.
  • The Bradbury Building in downtown LA is an iconic piece of Victorian architecture that's been used in many films, including Blade Runner and The Artist.
  • 11 Leo Carrillo Beach. Movies filmed here include Grease, Gidget, 1984's The Karate Kid, The Craft, Point Break, The Usual Suspects, Inception, and Mega Shark Versus Crocosaurus, and in the first season's opening scene of episode 1 of The Rockford Files.
  • Vazquez Rocks, Agua Dulce. Iconic to the point of cliche, dramatic sandstone formations seen in hundreds of TV shows, movies, commercials, and music videos. Particularly featured in Science Fiction and Western films and TV, though in their first cinematic appearance they represented Tibet.
  • 12 Zuma Beach and 13 Westward Beach near 14 Point Dume in Malibu have been the filming locations for numerous movies and TV programs such as Planet of the Apes, I Dream of Jeannie, D-Day 6th of June (1956); D-Day Battle of Omaha Beach (2019); Iron Man Parts 1-3, Fast & Furious, Lucifer, Star Trek Enterprise-Earth Beach, Knight and Day,, etc. The nearby 15 Malibu State Park in Agoura Hills served as the filming location (in place of Korea) for M*A*S*H TV series.
  • LAC+USC Medical Center
  • Griffith Park
  • Los Angeles Arboretum
  • Despite the name, the annual San Diego Comic-Con has become a major event in the cinema world. Taking place in San Diego every July, this is one of the world's biggest fan conventions and tickets are expensive and hard to get, but if you're lucky enough to get inside you can expect plenty of big-name film and television stars and producers, in addition to representatives of major toy manufacturers and the video game and comic industries, showing up to offer sneak peeks at major upcoming releases.
  • San Francisco has been the backdrop for numerous famous films, including Alfred Hitchcock's Vertigo, the Dirty Harry series, and the action movie The Rock.
  • 16 Los Angeles Convention Center, Los Angeles, +1 213 741-1151. The location of the yearly E3 (The Electronic Entertainment Expo) convention for new video games and consoles. Held in June.
  • Chicago — the country's third largest city (and historically its "second city") is also featured in several movies, some of them being The Blues Brothers, Ferris Bueller's Day Off, National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation, The Fugitive, Batman Begins, Breakfast Club, and Chicago.
    • Union Station - among other films, the famous staircase shootout with the imperiled baby carriage in The Untouchables was filmed here.
East Coast
  • New York City has been the backdrop for countless motion pictures and television series not to mention all the video games set here; again, so many that it would be fruitless to try and list them all here. In contrast to L.A., New York is more reputed for its indie film scene, with numerous excellent theaters catering to that clientele and oftentimes hosting discussions with the makers of some fine, lesser-known films. Additionally, most of America's major media and television networks are headquartered in Midtown Manhattan, with most of the popular late night and morning talk shows taped here, usually with tickets available to the public.
    • Cortlandt Alley in Chinatown. Contrary to popular portrayal in film, New York only has a handful of dark, dingy alleys, and most of them are off-limits to filming. So if a scene takes place in an alley in a film or TV show filmed in New York, it was almost certainly filmed here.
  • 9 Baltimore, Maryland. The Wire Tour is an itinerary for the acclaimed HBO series The Wire. The city was the setting for the NBC 1990s crime series, Homicide: Life on the street. Several Barry Levinson films were set in Baltimore, including Diner and Tin Men. Avant garde director John Waters set several of his films in Baltimore, including Serial Mom and Hairspray. A number of episodes of NCIS were set in Baltimore, where Tony DiNozzo had prior experience as a city cop.
  • Washington, D.C.: Any film involving the American political leadership in any form or role will have Washington as a backdrop — frequent appearances are made by the White House, U.S. Capitol and the Pentagon, across the Potomac in Arlington, Virginia. Many episodes of the CBS series NCIS are set in Washington, where NCIS is based at the Washington Naval Yards.
  • Seneca Falls is widely believed to be the original Baxter Falls in the holiday classic It's a Wonderful Life.
  • 10 St. Andrew's School (Middleton, Delaware). Setting of the 1989 film Dead Poets Society, described to take place in Vermont. St. Andrew's School (Q1802429) on Wikidata St. Andrew's School (Delaware) on Wikipedia
  • 11 Albuquerque, New Mexico. The Breaking Bad Tour showcases the location of acclaimed AMC series Breaking Bad.
  • Route 66 has been the setting for many films, such as The Grapes of Wrath. Pixar's Cars contains cartoon versions of some real places on the route and parodies a Monument Valley side trip as "Ornament Valley".
  • 12 Monument Valley, Arizona. An iconic scenery, used in countless Western films (see Old West).
  • 13 National Videogame Museum, Frisco, Texas. A museum celebrating the rich history of video games. They also have a large version of pong.
  • 14 Alamogordo, New Mexico. The location of the Atari Video game burial, a mass burial of unsold Atari games, most notably E.T. Previously thought to have been an urban legend, most of the copies have now been sold.
  • 15 Forks, Washington. Main setting for the Twilight literary and film franchise.
  • 16 Seattle, Washington. Setting for series such as Frasier and Grey's Anatomy, as well as films such as It Happened at the World's Fair, The Parallax View, Singles, and Sleepless in Seattle.


  • 17 Toronto. A place where a surprising number of movies (and series) were shot that are set elsewhere. If you come to the city you might notice that some houses that are in New York or San Francisco according to your favorite sitcom are actually here. The University of Toronto site has a map of film and TV locations in the city.
  • 18 Vancouver. Another place where a number of television series and movies have been filmed at such as Crush (1993); Smallville, Stargate, X-Files , Battlestar Galactica among others have been filmed in Vancouver. Some of the backdrops for some of the televisions shows are out of this world. Vancouver has had to stand in for numerous other places and few shows shot in Vancouver are actually set there, leading to the quip that "Vancouver doesn't even look like Vancouver"
  • 17 Green Gables Heritage Place (Cavendish, Prince Edward Island). Author Lucy Maud Montgomery visited the farm as a young girl and based the location of her best-selling "Anne" series of books on the Green Gables farm. The farmhouse exterior has not changed significantly over time, and its interior decor and artifacts depict the late Victorian Period in rural Prince Edward Island. Green Gables (Q1109932) on Wikidata Green Gables (Prince Edward Island) on Wikipedia

South America




Many Brazilian action films have taken place in favelas (slums) of Rio de Janeiro, such as City of God, the two Elite Squad movies and Last Stop 174. One of those favelas where some of this filmes were shot is Tavares Bastos, located at Catete neighborhood, in South Zone of Rio de Janeiro. In addition to these films, in this favela was recorded the music video Beautiful by Snoop Dog and Pharrell.

Fan conventions and trade shows


Fan groups often hold conventions for like-minded people to gather and share their love for the specific genres. Similarly, industry groups often hold their own events to announce the development of new products to the press. While hundreds of such events exist, the ones listed here are particularly notable for showcasing works that are at the pinnacle of their respective genres.

Comic books


Anime and manga


Fantasy and science fiction


Video games




Film studios had traditionally built massive backlots simulating localities or time periods. However, with the rise of commercial air travel, studios have increasingly turned on on-location filming instead, and advances in computer technology have led to an increasing number of productions being shot indoors against a green screen, with the background later added using computer-generated imagery (CGI), thus obviating the need for backlots and physical sets. These, coupled with the boom in real estate prices, means that backlots are increasingly few and far between, with most of the Hollywood studios such as MGM and RKO having sold off their backlots to property developers in the 1970s, who have proceeded to demolish the film sets and replace them with suburban housing. Nevertheless, a few of the Hollywood studios have retained parts of their backlots and converted them into tourist attractions that you can visit. Backlots also continue to be used extensively in East Asia for the filming of period dramas.

  • 1 Universal Studios Hollywood, Universal City, California, United States of America. The original backlot tour, with the theme park having been developed specifically to provide tours of the Universal backlot. Today, the Studio Tour with a tram ride through the backlot is still the main highlight of the theme park. Universal Studios Hollywood (Q1337576) on Wikidata Universal Studios Hollywood on Wikipedia
  • 2 Toei Kyoto Studio Park (東映太秦映画村, tōei uzumasa eigamura), Arashiyama, Kyoto, Japan. An active film studio owned by the Toei Company, one of Japan's largest entertainment companies. The highlight is the backlot with recreated Edo-period streets, where many Japanese period dramas (時代劇 jidaigeki) were filmed. While the popularity of Japanese period dramas has drastically declined since their heyday in the 1960s, the backlot continues to be in active use, so you may catch a filming session going on if you're lucky. Also has many shows and exhibits about filming techniques, as well as plenty of activities to keep the kids occupied, provided of course they can speak and understand Japanese. Toei Kyoto Studio Park (Q11103541) on Wikidata Toei Kyoto Studio Park on Wikipedia
  • 3 Yongin Daejanggeum Park (용인 대장금 파크), Yongin, South Korea. Backlot owned by South Korean television station MBC, used for the filming of Korean period dramas (사극 sageuk), including numerous famous ones that have taken much of Asia by storm. It is named after Daejanggeum, the first Korean period drama to have become popular outside South Korea. The backlot is divided into three different areas, evoking the Three Kingdoms, Goryeo and Joseon eras respectively. It is still in active use, so you could potentially catch your favourite South Korean actors in action if you are lucky. Yongin Daejanggeum Park (Q15622253) on Wikidata Yongin Daejanggeum Park on Wikipedia
  • 4 Hengdian World Studios (横店影视城, héngdiàn yǐngshìchéng), Hengdian, Zhejiang, China. Film studio used for the filming of Chinese period dramas, which claims to have the largest backlot in the world. Regardless of the veracity of the claim, the backlot is a massive one, divided into numerous zones evoking different periods of Chinese history from the Qin Dynasty all the way up to the Republic of China era. Among the highlights of the studio are a replica of the Forbidden City, as well as a replica of the palace of Qin Shihuang, the first emperor of China. It is still in active use, so you could possibly catch filming in action if you are lucky. It is also often used in the filming of Korean period dramas for the scenes that are set in China. Hengdian World Studios (Q740442) on Wikidata Hengdian World Studios on Wikipedia



Many destinations (especially film and literature settings, and current and former celebrity homes) are private property. Some are off limits to the public. Even if they can be legally approached, trespassing or excessive photography might disturb residents.

In most countries, works of fiction become public domain 70 years after the author's death, which means that most modern works are proprietary. Businesses (including guided tours and merchandisers) might need a license to make profit from those franchises. The United States is for now the main exception. While newer works have the "life plus 70" term—or for "works for hire", which covers most films, 95 years from publication—those first published before 1978 are protected for 95 years from first publication (with the official public domain date being January 1 of the 96th year). For example, the famed American novel The Great Gatsby (by F. Scott Fitzgerald, and published in 1925) entered the public domain in most countries in 2011 (Fitzgerald died in 1940), but did not enter the US public domain until 2021.

See also

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