Books, favorites, fiction

Top Ten Places Books Have Made Me Want to Visit


Oh man, how to narrow this down to ten?

1. Wales. Susan Cooper and Lloyd Alexander chiefly are responsible for my love affair with Wales. Between Prydain and Will Stanton I was hooked early, and Brother Cadfael and Celtic lore in general only strengthened my love. I’ve even attempted to teach myself the Welsh language, that’s how much I love it.

2. The Rest of the UK. I have read way too many books set in England, Scotland, and Ireland to not want to visit every corner. Carl is looking at getting his PhD in either Scotland or England, and the thought of actually living there for 3-4 years seems like a dream. A really good one.

3. Greece. Books like MWT’s Queen’s Thief series and CS Lewis’ Till We Have Faces, and Lloyd Alexander’s The Arkadians, not to mention all the Greek Mythology I grew up on (did anyone else ever play the board game By Jove? Friends of ours owned it, and we would play it all the time) kindled in me a deep, deep desire to someday visit the land that has inspired so many wondrous stories.

4. Oxford, England. I know I already listed Great Britain above, but Oxford deserves its own special spot. Not only is it the home of my beloved Lord Peter and Harriet Vane, but so many of my favorite authors attended or lectured (or both!) there, that I can’t even imagine walking around there.

5. Mankato, Minnesota. Maud Hart Lovelace based Deep Valley on Mankato, her own home town, and someday I intend to visit there and pay my respects to Betsy Ray properly.

6. Prince Edward Island. Because Anne and Emily and Kilmeny and the Story Girl and Jane and Marigold, that’s why. Because LM Montgomery. And because it’s beautiful.

7. Mythology is to blame for a lot of my travel lust, it seems, because I also really want to visit the Scandinavian countries due to my fondness for Norse mythology. Also, as with PEI, because I think they’d be beautiful. And because Carl’s heritage is largely Swedish. But mostly because of myths.

8. Colorado. The first time I read Susan Coolidge’s Clover and In the High Valley, I fell in love with her description of Colorado. I am 100% certain it’s nothing like that today, but I would still love to visit and see for myself.

9. Egypt. Yup, blame it on the myths again. Also on Zilpha Keatley Snyder’s The Egypt Game. And the Amelia Peabody books.

10. Narnia. I know it’s not a real place. But oh, how I’ve always wished it was.

As always, check out The Broke and the Bookish for more Top Ten lists.

9 thoughts on “Top Ten Places Books Have Made Me Want to Visit”

  1. Uh, yup. What say – you, me, Wales, England, Scotland, and then PEI on the way home? I also want to see the Muskoka, ON, from “The Blue Castle”. As far as Oxford, my daughter did just that recently (on the 4:50 from Paddington, no less). I think Lord Peter and Harry Potter (for filming locations) were partly to blame.
    Actually, one of my fictional dream spots, back as a kid in Germany, was America – so I went and emigrated.

    1. YES, we definitely need to plan that trip. I hadn’t even thought of Muskoka, but yes, I would love to visit there and see if I can spot Valancy and Barney’s island.

      The 4:50 from Paddington! Did she recognize the spot where the murder happened?

  2. I am one of those weird never-read-Betsy-Tacy types, but I am a collection-development librarian, so when I see Mankato Minn all I can think of is THAT’s WHERE ALL THE BOOK WAREHOUSES ARE. I don’t know why. But there’s at least half a dozen book distributors that operate out of Mankato. Kate DiCamillo also had a job in one of those warehouses once which is what inspired her to write children’s books.

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