Fancy A Reading Holiday, Anyone?

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Calling all bookworms, we may or may not have found the perfect holiday idea for you!

Lots of people enjoy a good book while on their holidays, but have you ever wanted to dedicate your entire holiday to reading? If so, you might want to look into a ‘reading holiday’. The clue is in the name, really. Just you, a small travel bag with just the essentials, and a nice big pile of books that you plan on devouring in the course of a few days or weeks. Sounds lovely, doesn’t it? 

Reading holidays have been taking the book world by storm, as they offer the perfect escape from the usual hustle and bustle of life. It’s also a great way to plough through that never-ending list of books that you said you were going to read, but just ended up leaving on the shelf to collect dust (we’ve all been there).

Life can be overwhelming sometimes, and it can be difficult to make time to take a break, look after yourself and do something you love. The idea of checking out for a while and living in the world of literature sounds like the dream to a lot of people, and reading holidays are a lot more flexible and easy to do than you might think. Here are some tips and ideas for planning the best reading holiday ever. 

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Where To Go

Everyone enjoys reading in different ways and for different reasons. If you want to feel inspired as well as relaxed on your trip, why not head off to a city known for its libraries, bookshops, or native writers? Lisbon has the most bookshops per capita in the world, so you won’t be short of options if you decide to stay there.

Warsaw is famed for its immense number of libraries, or maybe you’d like to visit the places that inspired your favourite writers. 

Cities including Prague and St. Petersburg inspired great writers and thinkers such as Dostoevsky and Franz Kafka. If you want to stay more local, Dublin has a history of being the inspiration of the work of classic Irish writers such as James Joyce and W.B. Yeats. 

If nature and solitude are what inspire you to read and write, why not find a cosy little AirBnb tucked away in the mountains of Ireland or Scotland, or maybe a quaint beach house on the coast?

Spending some time away from your responsibilities and instead using that time to relax and look after yourself is so helpful for your mental health, and what better way to go about this than spending the day surrounded by nature and engrossed in your favourite book? 

You don’t even need to leave your home to have a reading holiday. If you’d prefer the comfort of your own bed, then that’s perfect. Light some candles, put on some calm music, order your favourite takeaway and keep your nose buried in whatever book you choose. 

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What To Bring

Well, the first thing is pretty obvious. Books. A lot of them. Or at least as many as you think you can get through in however long you’re taking this holiday.

If you like to annotate the books you’re reading, then bring some pens, sticky notes, highlighters, whatever tools you need. If you usually listen to music while reading, have your earphones on hand. If you are planning on travelling somewhere for this holiday, of course the essentials need to be packed. But only the essentials.

The whole point of this trip is to read, read, read, so try and avoid bringing anything that might get in the way of that. Try not to use your phone so much, either. If you are travelling far and alone, a phone is very necessary for your own safety, but while you are reading, why not switch it off or put it on Do Not Disturb?

Bringing a friend is always an option, as a lot of people don’t enjoy travelling or being alone for a long period of time. However, reading holidays are usually done solo,  so if you are bringing a friend, it’s best that your plans for the holiday align and that you won’t distract each other too much. Still, it’s always nice to have someone to share your excitement or interest while reading. 

So, if you’re craving some time away from everything, and you also love a good read, we highly recommend taking a reading holiday. You won’t regret it. Happy reading! 

Words by Aicha Chalouche