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TOP FIVE

Best Destinations for Book Lovers

How many of us have wanted to walk straight into the pages of our favorite book?  While that might not be possible today, you can travel to the destinations in which these treasures are set.  A visit to these places will give you the opportunity to experience them for yourself, imagining what the lives of your heroes and heroines might be like.    

Here are Our Top 5 favorite classic literary works - and the destinations that made them famous!

Scotland... as described in Harry Potter

It's easy to see why this magical series about a young wizard growing up and honing his craft whilst in the shadow of the ever-present Lord Voldemort, the world's most powerful dark wizard, is popular among children and adults alike.  Throughout her books, J.K Rowling weaves complex, intertwined narratives while introducing us to what are now some of the world's most famous villains and protagonists.

One of the most enduring experiences in the student's time at their school of witchcraft and wizardry is a journey on the Hogwarts's Express, and now muggles can follow in the footsteps of Harry, Ron and Hermione with a trip aboard the Jacobite Steam Train. Following a line that's often described as the 'greatest rail journey in the world', you'll cross the Glenfinnan Viaduct and take in the scenic landscapes of Scotland's Western Highland region.

Featured tour: Edinburgh, the Highlands & Islands 

The Jacobite

Russia... as described in Anna Karenina

Moscow St Basils Cathedral

Set amidst the opulence of Russian high society during the second half of 19th century, Tolstoy's epic tale of love, betrayal and morality comes to life as you walk the streets of Moscow and St Petersburg, perhaps even taking the high-speed Sapsan Train between the two cities much like the fated Anna herself.

You can even visit some of the attractions outlined in the book, such as Moscow Zoo, Nevsky Prospekt and Peterhof Palace, often referred to as the 'Russian Versailles' thanks to its beautiful grounds filled with spectacular fountains and waterways.

Featured tour: Moscow & St Petersburg

England... as described in Wuthering Heights

Inspired by the undulating hills around her childhood home of Hawarth, writer Emily Brontë tells the story of Cathy and Heathciff, wandering the wild moors of Yorkshire. It's hard not to attribute some of her character's qualities to the novelist herself as very little is known about the reclusive and mysterious Emily, who only ever produced this one novel.

A born story-teller, she manages to describe the natural settings of her turbulent revenge story in such great detail that visitors today are still able to pick out topographical landmarks.While you're in the area, you won't want to miss out on seeing the Brontë Parsonage itself, the site where this literary family produced some of the most renowned books in English literature.

Featured tour: Yorkshire & Northumberland

The Yorkshire Moors

Japan... as described in Memoirs of a Geisha

Shinkansen 'Bullet trains'

Just like Sayuri, you too can soak up the sights of Japan's sublime cherry blossoms in Kyoto, while also taking in other sights from this novel about being a woman in a heavily male-dominated culture. The Geisha Quarter of the city still exists, though it mainly caters to tourists these days as opposed to businessmen looking for an evening's entertainment, and there are still 260 Geisha living in Gion Corner alone, who you're sure to see out and about in their authentic kimonos and face paint.

Travel to Kyoto on the Shinkansen, better known as the Bullet Trains, and be sure to take in a traditional tea ceremony while you're there, just as young Sayuri does.

Featured tour: Discovering Japan

Italy... as described in A Room with a View

Perhaps you're tempted to relive the constraints of Edwardian society as you explore renaissance Florence, the opening setting of E. M. Forster's much-lauded, A Room with a View. You can, however, avoid the "peevish wrangling" however of Lucy Honeychurch and her cousin Charlotte Bartlett by booking your trip in advance to ensure you get your room with a view.

While you're in the Tuscan capital, enjoy the artistic ambience exuded by architectural gems such as the Ponte Vecchio, Dante's tomb, located in the heart of Santa Croce, and the ever romantic yet distinctive Duomo. Pick your way through the medieval streets on your way to an afternoon at the Uffizi or take a table at one of the many pavement cafés and enjoy a typical Italian pastime of coffee supping and people watching.

Featured tour: Highlights of Tuscany

The city of Florence
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