Being a book lover is one of the best feelings in the world. Often, all you need is a cozy corner, a book, and a beverage to go with your mood or match the weather. But sometimes to make your love for books and reading touch new heights, you need places to inspire and delight your inner reader. And such places are abundant in the world. And no, I am not talking about bookstores. There are places that every book lover, like you, must visit once or, if it’s possible, twice and thrice in one’s lifetime.
Here are 10 places that every book lover must visit in their lifetime.
1. The Ernest Hemingway Home & Museum, Florida
For Ernest Hemingway fans, it will be like a crime if you don’t visit this place nestled on the island of Key West in Florida. The Ernest Hemingway Home and Museum offers fans a great opportunity to know the author they so love from up close. The entire tour of the place takes around 2-3 hours.
Explore the place the author grew up in and where he created the masterpieces that are proudly sitting on your bookshelf. The home, which is now converted into a museum, includes the main house, garden, and writing studio. Also, be sure to spot the cats that roam the grounds of the museum. The cats are believed to be descendants of a white six-toed cat called Snow White that was gifted to Ernest Hemingway by a ship’s captain. After the visit, be ready to fill your bag with mementos from the shopping area.
To make it more simple, the place is divided into:-
- The main house, which is filled with things that were used by the author, is still in perfect condition.
- An in-house pool that was planned by and whose construction was supervised by Hemingway.
- A beautiful garden blooming with scented and stunning flowers such as gardenias, bleeding heart, jasmine, and many more.
- Shop for buying merchandise such as city coffee, T-shirts, magnets, tote bags, and more.
A visit to this place promises to give you memories and an experience that you will cherish for years.
2. The Elephant House, Edinburgh, Scotland
One of the best places to visit for a Harry Potter fan is The Elephant House in Edinburgh. It is a cozy tea and coffee house and restaurant. What connection does The Elephant House have with Harry Potter? Well, it is the very place that inspired the story of the classic magical tale. J.K. Rowling, the author of the seven-part series, wrote most of the story here. The backroom that overlooks the sprawling Edinburg castle is the place where the author sat and wrote away her destiny.
The Elephant House is filled with writings by the author and stunning Harry Potter graffiti. While you sink in the feeling of being in the birthplace of your favorite book series, do try the cafe’s delicious teas, coffees, and bottled beers. You’ll have a hard time picking from the vast and impressive menu. And don’t miss out on the lip-smacking food, too.
3. Jane Austen Centre, Bath, England
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Jane Austen lovers, listen up! Here is a place that will let you know your favorite author up close. The Jane Austen Centre in Bath takes you through the author’s life during the Regency.
Jane Austen lived from 1775 – 1817 and a number of those years she spent in Bath. The Centre is located on the same street as her last home. Located inside a gorgeous Georgian building, the Jane Austen Centre lets you do a lot of fun things like dress up in authentic Regency attire of your choice; you get an extensive collection to choose from. You also get to experience what it was like to be an author in those times by trying your hand at writing with a quill pen and ink, just like Austen did in her time.
After the tour of the Centre, your next stop is The Regency Tea Room. Here you get to sip on some delicious real leaf or cream tea, savor homemade cakes, and enjoy some light lunch.
To get more out of your visit to the Centre, plan the visit around September, when the Centre holds the Jane Austen festival. The festival goes on for 10 days and offers dramatic readings, driven and walking tours, a grand supper in the tea room, dance workshops, ball performances, and much more.
4. The Fable, London, England
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One of the famous places for literature lovers is The Fable in London, England. This restaurant brings your childhood dream to life. As a child, you spent exciting days and nights reading countless fairy tales. And there’s no better way to revive your most memorable childhood memories than visiting this place in London. The Fable infuses you with the perfect fairytale vibe that is hard to shake off long after leaving it. The entire interior of the place looks straight out of a classic fairytale and Aesop’s Fables. The restaurant also includes:-
- A wine shop
- Florist shop, and
It offers the perfect stop for bookworms to enjoy a relaxing yet exciting time remembering all the beautiful childhood memories of reading classic tales. The restaurant serves food all day. So go in at any time and indulge in a rich dining experience that the book lover in you always dreamt of.
5. Cimitière du Père Lachaise, Paris, France
If there is one place where you can catch most of your beloved authors together, apart from a bookstore, it is the Cimitière du Père Lachaise in Paris. This is the resting place of the most popular authors, namely Oscar Wilde, Marcel Proust, Jim Morrison, Simone Signoret, Yves Montand, Charles Baudelaire, and Gertrude Stein. You can also find tombs of other notable personalities, such as painters and singers, buried here.
The entire walk is designed to be a delight for visitors. As you walk down the cemetery, you will come across beautiful sculptures, austere headstones, and ornate mausoleums apart from the main Gothic tombstones. There are also more than 5000 unique varieties of trees planted at the site, helping to lend an attractive charm to the place and give you a sense of calm.
While you are in Paris, do make sure to visit the Shakespeare and Company bookstore. No, not for books (you are anyway not going to leave without grabbing some) but to see the place that was frequented by authors such as TS Eliot and Ernest Hemingway, who did author readings there at their time.
6. Ashdown Forest, Sussex, England
Have you ever wished to walk the same path and be in the same place as Pooh and his friends? Who didn’t? Did you know that the place is for real? Your dream is waiting to come true in the Ashdown Forest in East Sussex. The Five Hundred Acre Wood is where A.A Milne’s Winnie the Pooh series was imagined and based on.
Book lovers are dreamers, and this forest offers the perfect setting to get lost in one’s own world. As you step on the path of the forest and move forward exploring, you start believing you have entered the popular children’s story as a character. How much better can it get?
The forest offers two mapped walking tours that let you relive the adventures of your favorite forest buddies. The routes have all the places that are shown in the stories, such as Galleon’s Leap, the Enchanted Place, the Heffalump trap, Christopher Robin’s North Pole, and Eeyore’s Gloomy Place.
After you are done exploring, take a spot and sit down. Enjoy a picnic, relax, and let your imaginations soar. Who knows, you might be ready with a plot for your own book at the end of it.
7. Famous Poet Tombs and Persian Gardens, Shiraz, Iran
For those who are in awe of Persian poems, this place in Shiraz is a must visit. The Famous Poet Tombs and Persian Gardens is a heaven of delight for booklovers. It is the home of the mortal remains of some of the most popular Persian poets from thousands of years ago. Some of them are Saadi, Khwaju Kermani and Hafez. Visit the tombs and be ready for a surprise. That is because the tombs do not wear the gloomy appearance associated with such places. Instead, they are thriving with colors, beauty, and everything lively. The tomb of Hafez is situated in the midst of a garden, making it all the more enticing to visit and spend some time.
8. Agatha Christie’s Home, Devon, England
How do you turn an interesting day even more interesting in England? By visiting the three-storeyed white Georgian house on Greenway Estate on the River Dart in Devon. This is the address of the queen of crime – Agatha Christie. This is the house where Christie spent most of her holidays and wrote some of her best crime novels. Agatha Christie mostly came here with her family to relax after releasing a novel and ended up writing at least three more here.
The home, which has now been turned into a museum, lets you take a tour of the rooms and artifacts and things belonging to Christie. Explore the room she used to relax and write, view the cutlery she used, the chair she loved, and her childhood photographs. This visit will undoubtedly bring you closer to your favorite author.
The house cum museum is not just thrilling from the inside but outside too. Sitting atop a hill, it offers an enchanting view of the woodland garden and the River Dart flowing below. The view is perfect for photos and a balm for your overactive detective mind.
9. Roald Dahl Museum and Story Centre, Buckinghamshire, England
One of the most creative must-visit places for book lovers is the Roald Dahl Museum and Story Centre. It was once the home of the author who lived there for 36 years. The museum gives you a glimpse into the childhood days of Dahl and lets you explore some interesting interactive galleries, such as imagining Fantastic Mr. Fox, where you get to know the behind-the-scenes of how the character was born and participate in some cool games.
The Story Centre sets your imagination free by allowing you to create your own characters and gobblefunk words, like Dahl. The place also offers Science and Nature walks that take you along the forestry routes that were behind the inspiration of so many of Dahl’s novels.
When you are done with all the fun, head to the on-site Cafe to gorge on delicacies such as Bogtrotter chocolate cake, afternoon tea, scones, and sandwiches.
10. Immortal Perfumes, Washington, U.S.A.
Do you want to smell like your favorite character? Then don’t leave Washington without shopping for some perfumes. The Immortal Perfumes is an online store in Washington that allows you to pick a scent that is designed after your favorite book character. The handmade perfumes take the striking characteristics of the popular characters and find the matching notes to create scents based on them. For example, the perfume inspired by Heathcliff has the notes of amber, leather, labdanum, cedar, myrhh, chocolate, etc. to go with his dark and brooding character.
Their most famous perfumes include Sylvia inspired from the Bell Jar, Heathcliff and Catherine inspired from Wuthering Heights, Pemberley inspired from Pride and Prejudice, Death in the Afternoon inspired by Ernest Hemingway’s novels, among others.
Book Lovers- They are a World in Themselves
People who love to read are not rare, but each one carries a persona that makes them stand apart. Book lovers stay in their own world of imaginations, often inspired by the books they read or their own curious minds. They do not necessarily have to roam the world to experience adventure, thrill, and joy. They get it all from books! But some places have an attractive pull that propels the bookworms to come out of their inner world and join the crowd. You have seen what these places are in this blog. I hope you will make sure to bookmark these and plan your visit soon or one day for sure. Do share your experiences if you have already visited all or some of the places mentioned to encourage your fellow beings to come out of their bubble and enhance their love for their favorite activity of reading. Also, if you know of other such places, do not wait for a second longer to share them. The more there are, the better!