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Lara’s Travels

‘Star Wars’ Locations That Would Be Great for a ‘Tomb Raider’ Game

Star Wars season is upon us once more as the highly-anticipated anthology film Rogue One is set to hit cinema screens this December! And since I’m as big a Star Wars fangirl as I am a Tomb Raider one, I thought I’d try to find a way to celebrate two of my favourite franchises, albeit with an archaeological twist. The Tomb Raider video game series and films have done a tremendous job of showcasing some of the world’s historical sites and exotic locations, whether they’re ... [Continue Reading]

December 10, 2016 // 0 Comments

Lara’s Travels: Trinity College Library, Dublin

Since this site was launched in March 2013, my Lara’s Travels feature has explored some of the cities and ancient sites seen in the Tomb Raider games, such as Prague’s Strahov District (Angel of Darkness), Zapadnaya Litsa in western Russia (Chronicles), and the tomb KV5 in Egypt (Last Revelation). And although the locations featured in the games and films are the ones that often stand out in most people’s memories, it would be remiss of me to say that the comics were ... [Continue Reading]

December 10, 2015 // 1 Comment

A Pilgrimage to Himiko’s Tomb

It’s not every day you get the chance to visit Yamatai or take a leisurely stroll around Himiko’s tomb. But one hot (and thankfully not too humid) day in September, my husband and I got the chance to do just that when we took some time off from our regular sightseeing and boarded a train bound for Nara, a former capital city not far from Osaka that’s renowned for its ancient temples, giant Buddha statue, and free-roaming deer. Once there, we transferred onto a smaller ... [Continue Reading]

October 7, 2015 // 6 Comments

Lara’s Travels: Strahov District, Prague

One of the things I’ve always enjoyed about the Tomb Raider series is the inclusion of real-life artefacts and locations in the games, even if the level designers and artists employed a heavy dose of artistic license in their efforts. During a family trip to Prague this Easter, I made a point of exploring the city’s Strahov district with my husband in tow (my mum declined the invitation in favour of some retail therapy) and we soon discovered that, shock horror, the real Strahov ... [Continue Reading]

May 12, 2015 // 3 Comments

Lara’s Travels: Zapadnaya Litsa

Lara Croft will soon be heading off to Siberia for her next adventure but long-time fans of the Tomb Raider series will know that this will certainly not be her first visit to the Russian Federation. In Lara Croft: Tomb Raider, our heroine travelled to an ancient settlement in Siberia (though actually filmed in Iceland) in search of one half of the mystic Triangle of Light. And fans of the Core Design games may remember that Ms Croft once broke into a high-security naval base at Zapadnaya ... [Continue Reading]

February 22, 2015 // 3 Comments

Lara’s Travels: The Dragon’s Triangle

Fans of Tomb Raider 2013 will recall that Lara and the Endurance crew venture into the region known as the Dragon’s Triangle in search of the lost kingdom of Yamatai. Throughout the course of the game, players became well-acquainted with this fictional island, its inhabitants, and the supernatural conditions that prevented people from leaving its shores. But what do we know about the Triangle itself? The Dragon’s Triangle, also referred to as the Devil’s Sea (Ma no Umi, ... [Continue Reading]

November 29, 2014 // 5 Comments

Lara’s Travels: The Aleutian Islands

Over the years, Lara Croft has visited some of the coldest and most remote places on the planet and the Aleutian Islands, which feature in the mini-adventure The Golden Mask, are no exception. In Golden Mask, Lara travels to Melnikov Island in search of the legendary Golden Mask of Tornarsuk and ends up infiltrating an old Soviet base in the process. While Melnikov Island is completely fictional, the Aleutian Islands themselves are very much real and may have been home to some of the first ... [Continue Reading]

July 27, 2014 // 3 Comments

5 Bloggers Who Have Followed in Lara Croft’s Footsteps

Long-time readers of The Archaeology of Tomb Raider will probably be familiar with my series, Lara’s Travels, which looks at the various real-life locations Ms Croft has visited over the years. Places which include Meteora, the Greek monastic complex which may have been the inspiration for Tomb Raider 1’s St Francis’ Folly, and Jan Mayen, the icy, volcanic island which made an appearance in Tomb Raider: Underworld. Lara’s globetrotting adventures have inspired many to ... [Continue Reading]

July 17, 2014 // 15 Comments

Lara’s Travels: The Cistern

Over the years, Lara Croft has visited dozens of archaeologically fascinating places but not all of them have been particularly glamorous. One such place that instantly springs to mind is the Cistern in Tomb Raider 1. When I first started playing Tomb Raider back in 1996, I bought myself a copy of the Prima official strategy guide to help me get through the game (Stella’s Walkthroughs wasn’t around back then) and while flicking through the pages, I noticed that one of the ... [Continue Reading]

June 17, 2014 // 3 Comments

Lara’s Travels: Museum Week Special

Hundreds of museums and art galleries across Europe took part in Twitter’s first “Museum Week” event this week and to celebrate its success, I thought I’d devote an edition of Lara’s Travels to the museums Lara Croft visits (or refers to) in the Tomb Raider series.** 1) Louvre Museum, Paris One of Lara’s most memorable museum visits is her after-hours escapade in the Louvre Museum, Paris, in Angel of Darkness. The Louvre Palace has a long, rich history that ... [Continue Reading]

March 30, 2014 // 1 Comment

Lara’s Travels: KV5

You’d be forgiven for thinking that the KV5 level of Tomb Raider: The Last Revelation was rather dull and forgettable. There are no real tombs to explore, no noteworthy treasures to find and you spend most of your time driving a jeep through sand dunes, dodging grenades, and avoiding deadly spike pits. Perhaps the level designers just didn’t realize that the real KV5 would turn out to be the largest tomb ever found in the Valley of the Kings. KV5, which stands for ... [Continue Reading]

November 10, 2013 // 5 Comments

Lara’s Travels: Meteora

In the last edition of Lara’s Travels, I wrote about the island of Jan Mayen in the Arctic Ocean, one of the real-life locations featured in Tomb Raider: Underworld. This time, however, we’ll be going back in time to where it all began and look at one of the places Lara visits in the original Tomb Raider (and Anniversary): St. Francis’ Folly. Of course, there is no real-life St. Francis’ Folly (try not to be too disappointed), though this hasn’t deterred fans from ... [Continue Reading]

September 11, 2013 // 12 Comments

Lara’s Travels: Jan Mayen Island

In the last edition of Lara’s Travels, we looked at the real and in-game Tomb of Semerkhet in Egypt. This time, we will be leaving the scorching deserts of Egypt behind us and will be turning our attention to a remote, volcanic island in the Arctic Ocean: Jan Mayen. Lara travels to Jan Mayen in Tomb Raider: Underworld in search of Valhalla and Thor’s legendary hammer, Mjölnir, in order to put an end to Natla’s plans to bring about the “Seventh Age” (thought to be ... [Continue Reading]

August 10, 2013 // 7 Comments

The Hunt for Himiko: Will Archaeologists Ever Excavate the Hashihaka Tomb?

In Tomb Raider 2013, Lara and the rest of the Endurance crew set out to look for the lost kingdom of Yamatai and its mysterious queen, Himiko, but, in reality, Japanese archaeologists have known the possible location of Himiko’s tomb for a few years now. Long-time readers of this blog may recall that a group of researchers were allowed access to the Hashihaka kofun burial mound earlier this year in the hope that they’d be able to confirm whether the tomb in Sakurai, Nara ... [Continue Reading]

July 30, 2013 // 12 Comments

Lara’s Travels: Tomb of Semerkhet

In this edition of Lara’s Travels, we’ll be exploring the Tomb of Semerkhet, one of the many Egypt-based levels in Tomb Raider: The Last Revelation. One of the things that long-time fans of the Tomb Raider series may have noticed is the series’ quirky blend of historical fact and archaeological fantasy. The Last Revelation is no exception. Does the Tomb of Semerkhet really exist? The answer is yes….and no. In The Last Revelation, Semerkhet is said to be a High Priest ... [Continue Reading]

June 8, 2013 // 12 Comments