alice in wonderland, avalon, bath, bilbo, birthplaces, charlton, emma, frodo, glastonbury, jane austen, king arthur, northanger abbey, oxford, persuasion, pride and prejudice, pump room, shakespeare, sherlock, stratford-upon-avon, tolkien, winchester
Last year I was offered a unique opportunity to live in England for an year. It was an once in a lifetime chance and I embraced it. Apart from travelling to other countries I decided to travel around England and really get to know the country I had always dreamed of and read about.
I decided to make these trips as special and meaningful as I could, therefore I planned to visit places which made a great impact on literature. The chosen destinations were not only my favourite writer’s birthplaces but also where some of the novels took place. Obviously I had to sit out some authors who I hadn’t read… Although one day I will and there I’ll be. There and back again.
First stop was Stratford-upon-Avon, hometown of William Shakespeare, who is now celebrating his 450th anniversary. I visited delightful cottages, a farm and I fell in love! Also, my dreams really came true when I saw the places where the pidgeons sleep. Like it was descrbibed in Harry Potter, just that instead of owls it was pidgeons. The river Avon, the theatre, the houses, such a romantic a picturesque place.
The Dove thingy
Needless to explain… himself in his house
From Shakespeare medieval’s castles to the 18th century
In addition to that I went to Bath, Winchester and Charlton to follow the Jane Austen trial. In Bath, I was able to visit locations from her books and imagine how society was back then walking down the road just chilling and analysing other people in the Pump Rooms. I wish I could find my Mr. Darcy there. Maybe not this time. But I definitely fell in love with Bath. I could feel the charm that enchanted that society so much. Walking in a live scenery.
Jane’s living room and a tiny dress
The FIRST edition of Pride and Prejudice!
Jane’s first and only love
Shall we dance? Let’s meet in the Pump Rooms
The hectic London gave way to the tiny and amazing hidden museum in 221B Baker Street where Sir Arthur Connan Doyle envisioned the home of the most well-known detective of all time, Sherlock Holmes. Every single detail has been respected. The bedrooms, bathrooms, everything! Also, it was a complete tribute to the books and the storys.
It is such a hidden place!
Nice charming house
During this dream trip I visited Glastonbury where the mythical island of Avalon is known to have a hidden entrance, so that King Arthur’s legend was also contemplated in my journey. Not everyone has read this saga, but that meant a lot. The ruins of the Glastonbury abbey and the possible King Arthur’s “grave” were really exciting! In addition to it all there was a wedding going on! In the touristic place! I loved the idea!
Landscape from the top of the Island of Avalon and the place where the Holy Grail was hidden (and became a water source with water rich in iron = Blood = Christ’s blood)
Last but not least, Oxford presented me with Alice’s real world of Wonderland and the fact that I could breath the same air, J.R.R. Tolkien did when writing Frodo and Bilbo’s adventures was fascinating. I visited several settings from the Harry Potter movies. (see pics) Unfortunately, it was a very quick trip, and I couldn’t visit as many libraries as I wanted.
England is flooded with great names and it is one kind of tourism which should be explored and developed as these people changed so many lives in the whole world and are present in numerous cultures.
Perhaps to some people this would not be as significant as it was for me, however after having travelled to these places in my mind for so long when reading the books, actually being able to step on the same floor Shakespeare did, changed my life. It made me a more fulfilled human being.
To conclude this article, I can definitely advise the readers saying that they should dare to dream and do not stop there but guarantee that they will come true. Never give up, because it sure is worthwhile.
Ps. Just to share a weird fact about me… I signed the guest book everywhere I went just that people would have proof of where I have been in my life and what influenced me once I’m famous.