12 essential places in Britain for book lovers

LONDON — Britain has been home to a formidable number of writers over the centuries, and offers numerous literary spots as a result. Add in a decent smattering of libraries and an encouraging number of independent bookshops, and the country makes for a book lover’s dream destination.

Here are a few of our favourites:

Hay-on-Wye, Wales

The tiny Welsh town of Hay-on-Wye is brimming with bookshops, with well-thumbed Penguins seemingly lined up on every horizontal space. During early summer, the annual Hay Festival sees bookworms descend on the town en masse for an event Bill Clinton famously called “Woodstock for the mind.”

Whitby, Yorkshire

The North Yorkshire seaside town of Whitby was the inspiration for Bram Stoker’s Dracula, and has maintained gothic associations ever since.


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