UK Destinations with Literary Connections

Wednesday 6th March, 2024 by Host & Stay

To celebrate World Book Day, we’re inviting you to step into the story. From the picturesque Lake District to the brooding North Yorkshire coast, the UK has inspired literature for hundreds of years. Plan a staycation to relive your favourite childhood story or your most read classic. Want to know more? Keep reading to find out our favourite UK destinations with literary connections.


Harry Potter fans will love visiting York! It’s famous Shambles was the inspiration for Diagon Alley and it’s easy to see why. Timber buildings dating back to the 13th century soar above the narrow, cobbled street and small paths veer off in different directions. As you stroll along the Shambles, you’ll discover a wonderful mix of independent retailers. It is home to an artisan bakery, a renowned chocolatier, a Harry Potter themed store (aptly called ‘The Shop That Must Not Be Named‘), jewellery boutiques, a coin and stamp dealer and much more!


When it comes to famous characters, we’re sure you’ll have heard of Dracula. Originally published in 1897 by Bram Stoker, Dracula has gone on to become one of the most celebrated novels within the gothic genre. But did you know it was inspired by Whitby? Whitby’s incredible headland, ruined Whitby Abbey and unique St Mary’s Church were the perfect setting for a thrilling horror. Whilst exploring Whitby’s gothic history, you can also enjoy the beautiful Blue Flag beach and the many fish restaurants renowned for their catch of the day!


Kent has amazing literary links as some of the greatest writers in history are connected to the region in some way. Arguably it’s most famous connection is Charles Dickens. Dickens spent many chapters of his life in Kent and it’s where he wrote a lot of his novels. Great Expectations was written during his time at Gad’s Hill and he used the surrounding villages and marshlands to inspire the setting. He also had a summer residence in Broadstairs which is where he wrote David Copperfield. He described the coastal town as delightful and fresh – and we couldn’t agree more!

The Lake District

It’s no surprise the beautiful Lake District was the inspiration for Beatrix Potter’s books. With untouched landscapes and incredible scenery, it was the perfect place to ignite her fascination with animals and wildlife which led to the creation of Peter Rabbit and his friends. You can bring Beatrix Potter’s illustrations to life and explore Derwentwater, Cumbria and Windermere. Visit Hill Top, Beatrix’s iconic farmhouse in the Lake District, or head to The World of Beatrix Potter museum which little ones will love!

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