Good books transport you into the world within the pages, but now, you can quite literally submerge yourself in the scenes of your favorite literature. Rail Europe is now offering a number of literary itineraries from London to the areas surrounding in honor of the British Tourist Authority deeming 2017 “Year of the Literary Heroes.” In addition to the rail trips, there will be a number of festivals throughout the UK for bibliophiles to indulge in camaraderie orchestrated around famous written works and the minds that brought them to life (Harry Potter fans, rest easy, J.K. Rowling will be honored).
Travelers can take a 20-minute tube ride from London-Victoria Station to Oxford Circus followed by a short walk to Marylebone to visit the famous 221B Baker Street apartment (now museum) in honor of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s The Adventure of Sherlock Holmes. The work of Jane Austen will be commemorated in a number of talks, exhibitions and activities at Jane Austen’s House Museum. Further, those interested can take a 90-minute train ride from Paddington to Bath where many of Austen’s works were set. If that isn’t enough, you can spend a night in Austen’s home.
Of course, what is a celebration of literary figures without J.K. Rowling? Thankfully, we do not have to find out. Rowling’s first novel, Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone, was released 20 prior to this June. In celebration of this anniversary, Royal Albert Hall is hosting a Harry Potter film concert series. Dedicated fans can take the seven-hour train ride from King’s Cross to Edinburgh and visit the location where Rowling wrote her first book at a café called Spoon.
The Year of Literary Heroes is sure to remind you why you love the books you hold most dear and instill an appreciation for the minds they came from.
Photo courtesy of Visit England
Grace Williamson is a travel intern with Paste and a freelance writer based out of Athens, Georgia.