To celebrate World Book Day today, here is a round-up of locations linked to inspiring authors for a truly great literature-linked trip.
The first day of March this year marks World Book Day, and what better day to choose to sit down and start planning a literature themed trip, whether for this year or next. From museums to lochs, we are surrounded by inspiration used in writers’ works, so why not take your group to explore one on your next adventure?
Charles Dickens: Portsmouth, London, Yorkshire
Those inspired by the works of Charles Dickens can visit a host of locations across the UK dedicated and linked to the author. Whether it’s Oliver Twist, or A Christmas Carol that has you turning pages, groups can learn about the different aspects of Dickens’ life as well as his many creations.
Visit his birthplace in Portsmouth and discover more about his youngers years, and enjoy guided walks around the surrounding areas, or take a trip to a Dickensian Christmas Festival, such as that in Grassington, Yorkshire for a festive experience with a twist. There’s also the Charles Dickens Museum in London which is where he is said to have written some of his works.
You can find out more about Dickens inspired trips by reading a recent feature on the writer here.
JK Rowling: Watford, Orlando, Scotland
For lovers of JK Rowling and her fictional fantasy series of Harry Potter books, the magic doesn’t need to stop when the books end. A visit to Warner Bros. Studio Tour in Watford can see you hopping onboard the Hogwarts Express, exploring the Forbidden Forest and walking through the Great Hall.
For groups wanting to extend the magic further afield, a trip to Universal Studios in Orlando can see you entering the Hogwarts Castle in an interactive virtual ride experience. And for groups looking for a more ‘outdoorsy’ trips in the UK, iconic filming locations such as Malham Cover, Alnwick Castle, Glenfinnan Viaduct, Glen Coe and Loch Arkaig are waiting to be explored.
Beatrix Potter: Cumbria
Beatrix Potter, one of the best loved children’s authors, is known for her wonderful animal tales with characters such as Peter Rabbit, Jemima Puddleduck and Benjamin Bunny. You can learn more about her stories and characters when visiting the Cumbrian museum, The World of Beatrix Potter.
Here you’ll travel through the stories, spotting your favourite characters along the way, plus learning about the writer behind the words. If you want to find out more about Potter, you can visit Hill Top, her home, where you'll discover more about her personal life and career. Plus, group visits are available.
William Shakespeare: London, Warwickshire
As one of the most famous writers in history, Shakespeare has to be considered when planning a literature trip. With an abundance of locations linked to the Bard, your group will be spoilt for choice. If it’s theatre you’re interested in, a visit to the Globe Theatre in London is a must, plus it’s always worth looking at local theatres to see what Shakespearean plays are being staged.
For an educational visit looking at the writer’s life, a visit to Stratford-Upon-Avon in Warwickshire and his birthplace, and a trip to his wife Anna Hathaway's House shouldn’t be missed. Shakespeare’s England offered suggested trip ideas, from theatre-based adventures to canal rides and historic castles and organisers can visit the website for more details.
The Bronte sisters: Yorkshire
Fan of the Bronte sisters? A visit to the Bronte Parsonage Museum in Keighley, Yorkshire will be right at the top of your list. The collections at the museum are the largest Bronte collections in the world and include manuscripts, letters, early editions of the novels and poetry and artefacts from the sisters’ personal lives.
Different exhibitions and events are run throughout the year, currently open and running until January 2019 is the Making Thunder Roar: Emily Bronte exhibition which marks her Bicentenary of her birth.
William Wordsworth: Cumbria
Fans of the works of William Wordsworth might like to pay a visit to Dove Cottage in the Lake District which is where the great writer wrote many of his poems. Stepping inside you instantly get a sense of what it would have been like during Wordsworth's time, from the stone floors to the glowing coal fireplaces.
To further your Wordsworth experience, visit the National Trust's Wordsworth House and Gardens, his childhood home in Cumbria. This year there’s a new exhibition looking at poppies during World War One, and you can walk in William's footsteps in his gardens, see costumed servants in the kitchens and enjoy the cafe serving tasty treats.
If you want to extend your interest further, read our recent feature which looks at places linked to famous love stories here.