by Mary-Milam Granberry
There is precious little that sets the heart of a book lover alight more than experiencing the very same country, city or street that a beloved author opened to them from the pages of their favorite book. Are you curious to wander the English landscapes that inspired an entire movement in poetry? Would you like to muse in the same cafes that inspired Hemingway in Paris? How about tours of ancient temples and majestic views that nurtured the intellectual and spiritual growth of human thought? Here are a few travel tours created especially for book lovers:
England and Ireland: Contiki
Starting in London, this 17-day tour takes travelers through the United Kingdom and hits a number of literary landmarks. It goes from London up into Scotland with a two-day stay in Edinburgh, where a must-see is the monument to Sir Walter Scott—the largest monument in the world dedicated to a writer. The tour then takes travelers through the Scottish Highlands with some excellent inclusive features for book nerds. A cruise of Lake Windmere in the Lake District will put you in the same area that inspired the likes of Romantic poets William Wordsworth and Samuel Taylor Coleridge. In Ireland, the setting of James Joyce’s “Dubliners,” travelers spend time in Dublin and then stay in County Cork, Kilkenny. Galway provides opportunity to kiss the Blarney Stone and walk the famous Cliffs of Moher. After stops in Londonderry and Belfast, the trip winds back through Dublin, offering a number of bookstores in addition to the Guinness storehouse and numerous pubs. Visit this trip’s itinerary on Contiki’s website.
Iceland: Classical Pursuits
Classical Pursuits, out of Toronto, arranges tours all around the world with the lovers of literature specifically in mind. In addition to trips to Portugal, Japan and Cuba in 2016, Classical Pursuits has put together a trip centering on Icelandic literature in September 2016. Suggested readings are recommended prior to the nine-day trip that will delve deeply into the fascinating history of Norse and Icelandic storytelling and writing while taking in the city of Reykjavik and its beautiful surrounding natural areas. Of note is the more contemporary work of Nobel laureate Halldór Laxness and the poet and novelist Sjón. Visit the Classical Pursuits website for more information.
Byzantium and Greece: The Word Travels
The Word Travels is an English travel agency that plans excursions specifically for book lovers. “Gods, Heroes and Romantics” is an 11-day trip the company lists as being available for group booking in spring, summer and autumn months. Travelers start in the ancient classical world of Byzantium (present-day Istanbul) and visit the Hagia Sophia, once the world’s largest cathedral and a vital library. Exploration of key Greek cities of the ancient world includes a walk around the ancient ruins of Troy, the temples at Delphi, the Acropolis in Athens and a climb up Mount Olympus, the very throne of the gods. The tour is peppered with talks by experienced guides, active hikes through Greek terrain and an Aegean sunset. Visit The World Travels for more information.
About the Author
Mary-Milam Granberry is graduate student at Emerson College in the publishing and writing program. The focus of her master’s degree is children’s publishing and creating interactive content for web and e-reader devices. Follow her @editmylife.
photo via Shutterstock