Books

Top 30 books that have inspired holidays – ‘Under The Tuscan Sun’ tops list | Books | Entertainment


Millions of holidaymakers have chosen a destination based on a book they’ve read – with “Under the Tuscan Sun”, by Frances Mayes, named as the top inspiration. A study of 2,000 adults found one in four have booked a holiday in order to visit a location referenced in a novel.

Some of the most popular holiday spots inspired by books include Venice (“The Thief Lord” by Cornelia Funke), Barcelona (“The Shadow of the Wind” by Carlos Ruiz Zafon), Kefalonia, (“Captain Corelli’s Mandolin”) and Paris (“Les Misérables” by Victor Hugo).

Others long to visit Rome, thanks to “Angels and Demons” by Dan Brown, and Corfu, which features in “The Corfu Trilogy”, by Gerald Durrell.

The research also revealed that 35 percent have been influenced by TV shows – with Iceland, Spain, and Italy among the top countries to visit after seeing them on screen.

A spokesman for Jet2holidays, which commissioned the research to celebrate World Book Day this Thursday, said: “A lot of holiday inspiration naturally comes from watching films or TV shows.

“But we were surprised to see how many have had the urge to travel somewhere based on a book they have read – which has no visual representation of the country or city it is set in.

“Sometimes it’s difficult deciding on where to go for your next trip – so it’s nice knowing that books aren’t just good for unwinding and enjoying some much-needed downtime, but also for holiday help, too.”

Reasons for visiting a place they read about in a novel include wanting to see what it looked like in real life (46 percent), learning more about the area (32 percent), and to tick it off their bucket list (15 percent).

And 62 percent of those who have made a trip were pleasantly surprised to find their book-inspired destination was better than expected.

Once there, half explored landmarks or attractions which were mentioned in the novel, while 25 percent stayed in accommodation featured in the non-fiction tale.

And 27 percent even signed up to a professional guided tour of some of the destinations they read about, according to the OnePoll.com data.

It also emerged those who have enjoyed a holiday after reading about it in a book have made an average of three novel-related trips – with 15 percent booking their travels the day after they had finished reading the story.

And 17 percent have a list of five places, on average, that they’d like to visit in the future, based on finished novels.

The spokesman for Jet2holidays added: “This World Book Day, we hope this research has inspired people to visit their local bookshop, and purchase a novel which could well be the setting for their next holiday.

“There are so many beautiful places to visit in the world, which makes it hard to narrow down, so hopefully this has given the nation some motivation to start thinking about where they might travel to next – and they may possibly have a book to thank.”

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