You know the authors and you’ve read the books, now it’s time to visit the famous literary locations where they are set. There’s nothing like reading a book and getting lost in the pictures you create with your imagination. You imagine what the characters look like, what they are doing and of course where they are. Beyond has come up with a list of awesome literary locations for book lovers everywhere.
Perhaps the most famous of famous literary locations: the home of the most famous playwright of all time – Shakespeare! No GCSE Literature course is complete without studying his texts so why not discover where he lived? Visit the influential town of Stratford-upon-Avon and discover the real history of Shakespeare. You can walk in his legendary footsteps, visiting his birthplace, the many buildings he used to frequent, his family members’ homes and the Holy Trinity Church, where Shakespeare was baptised and is buried. The bustling market town of Stratford-upon-Avon is drenched in over 800 years worth of rich culture and history. Learn even more with Beyond’s Introduction to Shakespeare Unit of Work.
The George Inn, Southwark
The George Inn in Southwark makes this list because it is rumoured to be the first place Charles Dickens read out the legendary ‘A Christmas Carol’. The Inn dates back to the 1600s and was frequented by Charles Dickens when it was a coffee shop. This pub even got an honourable mention in Charles Dickens’ book ‘Little Dorritt’. It is now the only surviving galleried coaching inn in London and guests can enjoy the delicious pub grub classics, lovely drinks and a warm historical ambience.
Jane Austen’s House, Chawton
Hampshire is home to Jane Austen’s well-loved, final home, The Chawton Estate. Here, Jane wrote, revised and had published all her well-known novels: Sense and Sensibility, Pride and Prejudice and Mansfield Park just to name a few. Explore her beautiful gardens and stunning scenery in the English village of Chawton. Why not visit the place that inspired Jane Austen’s genius?
The Garden Squares of Bloomsbury
Located in ever-vibrant Camden, the garden squares of Bloomsbury are filled with evidence of great literary giants. The list includes the likes of Virginia Woolf, Sylvia Plath, Ted Hughes, TS Eliot, WB Yeats and the Shelleys just to name a few. Mary Shelley made sure to spend hours exploring the scenic garden squares of Bloomsbury while she lived at 87 Marchmont Street.
The idyllic area makes for one of the most enjoyable walks as you can enjoy the fountain plaza at Russell Square or laze on the grass at Tavistock Square and read or daydream until you doze off. It was once the stomping ground of the Bloomsbury group, which consisted of the great writers, artists, and intellectuals of the 1920s and 1930s. The soil is rich with literary excellence, it’s worth a visit.
The Brontë Sisters’ Haworth
The famous Brontë sisters once lived in the quiet village of Haworth in West Yorkshire. They were born in Thornton, near Bradford, but wrote most of their famous works while living at the Haworth Parsonage which is now overseen by the Brontë Society. The quaint village offers a famous walk called the Brontë Way, which leads through the Laithe Reservoir to Brontë Falls, Brontë Bridge and the Brontë Stone Chair which is believed to be where the sisters would take turns to sit while writing their stories. Today, you can follow this famous literary trail up on the moors and to Top Withens, which is said to be a major source of inspiration for Emily Brontë’s ‘Wuthering Heights’ novel.
Calling all book and travel lovers, let’s celebrate these great writers and their works! Check out Beyond’s fantastic resources to learn more about these writers. If you visit any of these famous literary locations let us know what you thought.
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