Sometimes we need to go to a specific travel destination for writing inspiration. No matter your writing genre, drawing inspiration from your environment can be very helpful. Many writers get bored with their everyday locations; as a result, it can be helpful to travel to different places around the world to seek inspiration. The right location can help to bring fresh ideas to your mind which can help you to get the words flowing. Here are 10 perfect travel destinations to get new inspiration for your writing.
1. Balmoral Hotel, Edinburgh, UK
This hotel is gorgeous and has a distinct castle feel to it. However, it is not merely the architecture of the building which makes this destination so inspiring. It is the fact that this is the very same hotel where J.K. Rowling finished the final Harry Potter book, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. The Balmoral Hotel has even turned the room that J.K. Rowling stayed in while she was finishing up the book into the J.K. Rowling Suite. If this hotel worked for J.K. Rowling to craft one of the most successful books of all time, then it could also work for you!
2. Paris, France
The city of lights, love, and writers. There are plenty of places that boast the influences of great writers, but none so iconic as Paris. This was the home of Hemingway, Gertrude Stein, and Ezra Pound (all at the same time!) It is one of the single most romantic and beautiful places in the entire world. Visit the Eiffel tower and view the city from above, sit at a cafe and write, or walk the streets and allow the city’s charm and romance to inspire you.
If you’re writing romance, you can also visit the famous Pont des Arts bridge, which is where lovers have placed locks onto the railings and thrown the keys into the Seine as a symbol of committed love for years. The city is full of inspiration and is a great place to visit to help you with the love aspects of your novel. Who knows? Maybe you’ll be so inspired, you end up writing one of the great upcoming bestsellers of the year.
3. San Francisco, USA
San Francisco is another beautiful city, like Paris, which many writers and creative professionals find inspirational. Some of the best writers in history have done some of their best work in this city. Both Allen Ginsberg and Jack Kerouac used to frequent local bookstores and cafes in the city. Jack Kerouac even has a street named after him in San Francisco. This street is called Jack Kerouac Alley. A number of well-known bands have also come from San Francisco including the Grateful Dead and Third Eye Blind. Further, the San Francisco Bay area is home to many tech companies whose innovation and creativity has dramatically changed the world. Being near these companies alone can be enough to make you feel inspired. If you are stuck at some point while trying to write your best urban fantasy series, then you may just be able to get past a recent bout of writer’s block if you go to San Francisco.
4. Reykjavik, Iceland
Iceland has some of the most beautiful landscapes in the entire world. Few places on earth are better for drawing inspiration for fantasy novels. If you need ideas for settings or for descriptions of landscapes while trying to write your best high fantasy series, then this is the perfect place to visit. Traveling to Iceland is also cheaper than traveling to many other locations. So, this is a great option if your travel budget is on the lower side. The Icelandic culture is also very interesting. The city of Rekjavik is very beautiful and is a wonderful place to explore. There is no shortage of beauty, mystique, and wonder in Iceland. All of these things can help to draw out creativity. In fact, if you go to Iceland, you may just come up with some of your best ideas yet! It is no surprise that part of the famous Game of Thrones television series was filmed in Iceland.
5. Istanbul, Turkey
Istanbul, Turkey is home to one of the most beautiful structures in the entire world, the Hagia Sophia Cathedral. This Cathedral is roughly 1,500 years old, and was built during the reign of Justinian 1, Emperor of Byzantine. This city, which many believe separates the east from the west, is full of interesting buildings, cafes, restaurants, streets, homes, and other things. If you are feeling devoid of inspiration while trying to write best-selling fiction books, then a quick trip to this enchanting city can help you to feel inspired again. If you do end up visiting Istanbul, then you really should make sure that you see the Hagia Sophia. It is spectacular. It is no surprise that Author Dan Brown even used Istanbul as the setting for the pivotal scene in his book, Inferno. Perhaps one of the important scenes for your upcoming bestsellers will also take place in this special city.
6. Auckland, New Zealand
New Zealand is another place that is extremely beautiful, and, like Iceland, has served as a setting for a famous fantasy series. Much of the Lord of the Rings trilogy was filmed in New Zealand. This is partly because New Zealand has beautiful forests, hills, rivers, mountains, and other natural landscapes. So, if you are trying to create the best high fantasy series that the world has ever seen, then this may be the perfect setting to provide you with the inspiration that you need. You can even visit some of the settings from the Lord of the Rings movies if you would like to. A walk through the Shire location may be exactly what you need to help you bring out some of your best creativity.
- Prague, Czech Republic
If you’re a fan of Laini Taylor, you’ll definitely feel the inspirational vibes in Prague. You can even plan your own Daughter of Smoke and Bone tour to feed your inner nerd (yes, Poison Kitchen is a real place).
Even if you haven’t read Laini Taylor (you need to, right now), the gargoyles, side alleys, and gothic architecture give off a mythical vibe that’s sure to get you writing. This would be the perfect location for inspiration if you’re writing a regency romance or urban fantasy, especially if your work-in-progress features castles, magic, or mythological creatures. Check out the Charles Bridge, Old Town, Prague Castle, or the Astronomical Clock. All of these would be fantastic settings to inspire a sense of mystery and intrigue.
- New Orleans, USA
There’s just something about New Orleans. Even the most skeptical of us might believe in voodoo, ghosts, and vampires while walking the streets of New Orleans, even if it’s just for a moment. Get your fortune told, check out the Burbon Street jazz scene, and eat beignets with coffee at the Café du Monde. My personal favorite was the nighttime vampire tour that reveals a rich history of mythology in the city. We even saw the hotel where Interview with the Vampire was filmed (the tour guide was quick to point out that the novel actually names a different, less eye-catching hotel) and visited the site where the legendary casket girls were said to have lived.
If vampires and ghosts aren’t your thing, you can still catch the mystical vibes by visiting this historical city. A friend of mine was even inspired to write a novel about a private eye while visiting New Orleans… the possibilities are endless!
9. Tokyo, Japan
Writers don’t let writers miss out on themed cafes, and Tokyo is known for its unique ability to provide a themed cafe for any interest. From adorable monsters to Alice in Wonderland, robots, or your favorite anime, Tokyo has it all (this Black Butler cafe is on my personal bucket list).
Besides this, Tokyo has some amazing sites and scenery. The wide variety of manga and anime genres are proof that this city feeds the imaginations of every genre writer out there. Japan’s capital is also known for its vibrant literary scene, and even if you don’t speak Japanese, there are plenty of amazing literary sites to inspire any writer.
10. Santorini, Greece
Santorini, Greece is teeming with color, intrigue, and beauty. One walk through the streets of this city will leave you in awe of how beautiful the world is. Whether you are trying to come up with a setting for the next chapter of your best urban fantasy series or whether you are trying to design a new world altogether for your fiction work, Santorini is sure to help provide the inspiration you need. The waters off of the coast of Santorini are some of the most vivid blues that you will ever see. If your book has any scenes that take place on oceans, then visiting Santorini can help connect you to ocean vibes and get you in the mood to write about the sea. A side benefit of visiting Santorini for inspiration is that it is also a great vacation spot. So, you may be able to hit two birds with one stone by going there!
Whether you are trying to write the best urban fantasy series, the best high fantasy series, or upcoming bestsellers in any genre, traveling to an inspiring location is one of the best ways to generate new ideas for your book. This is exactly the reason why Earnest Hemingway frequently traveled to Havana, Cuba, and why Jack London traveled to the Yukon. When you are in an inspiring environment, it is simply easier to feel inspired.
All of the locations on this list are great for generating inspiration. You really can’t go wrong with any of them. However, each of these locations is better for drawing out different types of inspiration. For example, Paris is probably the best place to draw out inspiration for love stories, Iceland or New Zealand are probably the best places for drawing out inspiration for fantasy, and San Francisco or Istanbul are probably the best places for drawing out inspiration to write the best urban fantasy series of the year.
So, the place you should go to depends largely on the type of book that you are writing. However, you may be able to tell which place is best for you to travel to simply by looking at the pictures on this list. If one of these places resonates with you when you look at its picture, then that place is probably the best one for you to visit. But don’t worry, if you go to the place and do not like it, you can just try another one on the list! Traveling in and of itself can be inspiring too. You may have your next great idea while you are sitting in the train station waiting for your train!
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