When Lucy first meets Mr Tumnus, he explains to her that “all that lies between the lamp post and the great castle of Cair Paravel on the eastern sea” is Narnia. In stepping beyond the lamp post, she suspends disbelief and begins to explore a new world. As readers, we do the same thing when we fall in love with the characters and events in our favourite books.
Beyond the Lamp Post exists to take that exploration further, using literary works as the basis for real world travel.
Although the chances of tea with Mr Tumnus or a walk with Aslan may be remote, lovers of The Chronicles of Narnia can set their path for Northern Ireland, the childhood home of C. S. Lewis, whose memories of the place inspired him in creating Narnia.
And why stop there? With millions of books and thousands of destinations on offer, there’s always something new to read and somewhere exciting to visit.
Who’s behind the Lamp Post?
Hi! I’m Jo, a Kiwi traveller with a serious passion for literature. I’ve visited more than 50 countries so far, and read more books than I could easily count. (I’ve just joined Goodreads though, so I’ll be able to start…). I love the way that books draw me in to places that I have never been and make me interested in events, cultures and relationships that I have never experienced. I also love the way that they teach me about the places I am going, and remind me of the places I have been.
11 reasons why I created Beyond the Lamp Post
- As a kid, I always had my nose buried in a book. Or several books. Plus the one in the car that I read to my mum and brother whenever we drove somewhere. (Not even kidding).
- When I was 11, I visited Shakespeare’s birthplace – voluntarily. And bought his complete works while I was there.
- I have a Bachelor of Arts in English literature and also studied theatre (alongside my “real” psychology degree).
- I went to Maryborough, Queensland, purely because it was the birthplace of P.L. Travers, author of Mary Poppins.
- For my 30th birthday I spent a quiet couple of hours curled up in Shakespeare and Company book shop in Paris. It was the highlight of my day.
- After reading Anna Karenina in my bunk while crossing Russia by train, I sat at the grave of renowned theatre practitioner, Konstantin Stanislavski and promised him that I would stop neglecting my passion for literature.
- I travelled to Kars in the far east of Turkey because I once read Orhan Pamuk’s Snow and wanted to see where it was set. It was nothing like I imagined.
- When I couldn’t find a Merchant of Venice walking tour in Venice, I did some internet research and took myself on one.
- I recited Juliet’s ‘wherefore art thou, Romeo’ speech on her balcony (but quickly, quietly and subtly, because there were other people around and I wasn’t brave enough to do it at full volume).
- I read Hamid Ismailov’s The Railway whilst driving across Uzbekistan (even though it’s still banned in the country. What a rebel!).
- Santa still brings me a book every year.
So if you’re a lover of books and of travel, welcome. I hope that you find inspiration here, whether that be through a new way of seeing a place, or a new place to see from the comfort of your couch.
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