23 Beautifully Bookish Places To Explore This Summer

Do you love reading tales of distant shores, daydreaming your way to other places?

1. London, England

Bridget Jones gets drunk here, Sherlock Holmes said it was all “elementary” here, Zadie Smith’s characters roam the streets of East London. Literary landmarks are everywhere in this city.

2. Denmark

Surprisingly, the country in which Shakespeare set Hamlet is far from rotten and broody. This Scandinavian gem is also the home of the original Little Mermaid.

3. Mumbai, India

Salman Rushdie has set more than one novel in this kaleidoscopic Indian city.

4. Long Island, NY

Craving some Gatsby elegance? Long Island is the place for it.

5. Transylvania, Romania

The home of Dracula, today associated mostly with vampires, is actually is a beautiful area of Romania.

6. St. Petersburg, Russia

The setting for Dostoyevsky’s Crime and Punishment, among others, and home to some spectacular cathedrals and palaces.

7. Dublin, Ireland

Channeling some James Joyce? Dublin (unsurprisingly the setting for Joyce’s Dubliners) offers a great literary heritage, and all the Guiness you can drink.

8. Kenya, Africa

Want to reenact John le Carre’s The Constant Gardener? Probably not, but Kenya is still beautiful.

9. Venice, Italy

A magical water city steeped in literary history. Follow the steps of Shakespeare’s Merchant and Othello. Or if that’s not your thing, travel for Geraldine Brooks’ People of the Book, Jeanette Winterson’s The Passion, Anne Rice’s Cry to Heaven… the list goes on.

10. Cartagena, Colombia

Dream of being a part of a Gabriel Garcia Marquez novel? Cartagena is a good place to start.

11. Edinburgh, Scotland

The home of heroes from Muriel Sparks’ Miss Jean Brodie to Alexander McCall Smith’s Isabel Dalhousie to Ian Rankin’s Inspector Rebus to Irvine Welsh’s Sick Boy.

12. Cairo, Egypt

Take a river cruise on the Nile, in true Agatha Christie style, and visit the pyramids while you’re there.

13. Oslo, Norway

The cold Scandinavian home base of Jo Nesbo’s (anti)hero Harry Hol

14. New York City, New York

“I would give the greatest sunset in the world for one sight of New York’s skyline”. Ayn Rand is probably not alone in feeling that way, seeing as NYC shares the top spot with London, England as most popular cities to set novels in.

15. Japan

A must-travel destination for any fan of Haruki Murakami.

16. Paris, France

Whether you’re a die-hard Victor Hugo fan and plan to storm the Bastille or swing from the towers of the Notre Dame, or want to live the fashion dream á la Devil Wears Prada, or simply visit Shakespeare & Co. and sit on the same couch Hemingway sat on, Paris has something for literary fanatics of every type.

17. Lafayette, Mississippi

The basis for William Faulkner’s fictional Yoknapatawpha, and his home for most of his life.

18. New Zealand

New Zealand has long been known to readers as the home Peter Jackson assigned to his version of Tolkien’s Middle Earth. And if that isn’t literary enough, lovers of Eleanor Cotton’s The Luminaries and Keri Hulme’s The Bone People will find several more reasons to travel to this beautiful country.

19. San Francisco, California

Home of the Beat Generation, Amy Tan, Isabel Allende, Khaled Hosseini, Jack London and Meg Cabot’s Princess Mia, every street corner has literary significance in San Francisco.

20. Rome, Italy

Want to chase secret Vatican conspiracies like Dan Browns heroes, or just enjoy the art and history and dream your way to Robert Graves’ decadent roman feasts – Rome is the place for it.

21. Peak District, England

As Jane Austen fans know, there is “no finer county in England than Derbyshire”.

22. Detroit, Michigan

Not only home of Ford and mo-town, Detroit is also the home of Jeffrey Eugenides, and a literary destination with a twist for readers of Middlesex and the Virgin Suicides, both of which are set in or around Detroit.

23. Barcelona, Spain

It’s not without reason fans of Carlos Ruiz Zafón travel to Barcelona from far and wide to do Shadow of the Wind walking tours.

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