Fantasy Friday

Fantasy Friday #8: Fancy A Holiday?

Fantasy Friday

Fantasy Friday is my own feature, posted every other Friday. It’s pretty self-explanatory: I do a feature on something to do with the genre. Sometimes it will be a book recommendation, sometimes showcasing a book or series I’ve loved and other times it might be a discussion post. You’re more than welcome to join in with this feature, let me know if you make your own Fantasy Friday post!

Today I want to talk about: fantasy holiday destinations.

No, not places that you’d love to go on holiday to, but fantasy locations and what they would be like if you visited them. I’m not sure some of them are perfect holiday material, however… I’ve just picked a couple this time, as this Fantasy Friday may reoccur more than once. So take a look at this brochure, and pick your destination!

Middle-earth, from the works of Tolkien

middleearth

  • Climate: ranging from temperate to very, very hot and lava filled, depending on where you choose to go. The northern lands of Forochel and its ice-bays are perhaps some of the coldest parts of Middle-earth. For more information on Middle-earth weather, please watch this video (thanks to Ana for the link!).
  • People: You’ll find the hobbits of the Shire to be very accommodating and fond of a party, whereas the elves of places such as Lothlorien may be a little more… hostile. Dwarves may be a little distrusting of slightly taller tourists, but can definitely hold their drink and show you a good inn or two.
  • Language: the common tongue (Westron), Sindarin, Quenya, Khuzdul, Entish, Black Speech and many more.
  • Notable landmarks/places to visit: The gorgeous little town of Hobbiton in the Shire is sure to give a friendly welcome, if you’re lucky you might catch some fireworks shows! The Golden Wood or Lothlorien is certainly a sight to see, but difficult to enter. You might be better off visiting Rivendell, which is known as the Last Homely House and is much more open to visitors. Those into horseriding may want to give Edoras a visit. And if you’re a bit of a thrill-seeker, why not go whitewater rafting down the Falls of Rauros, or visit Mount Doom?

Hogsmeade, from the Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling

hogsmeade

  • Climate: temperate, but it never fails to snow each winter!
  • People: no Muggles allowed. If you’re a Muggle, then – OBLIVIATE! Good, that’s all the Muggles gone. Hogsmeade is the only all-wizarding village in all of Great Britain.
  • Language: mostly English.
  • Notable landmarks/places to visit: the village of Hogsmeade is located right next to Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, a beautiful example of wizarding architecture: very confusing. Staircases never lead to the same place, rooms appear and disappear, and watch out for that Disappearing Cabinet! Within the village itself, there is Honeydukes, the infamous sweet shop; the Three Broomsticks, owned by the very lovely Madame Rosmerta; Madam Puddifoot’s Tea Shop, a cosy get-away for adoring couples and many other wonderful places. There are even rumours of a branch of Weasley’s Wizarding Wheezes opening up soon!

Westeros, from the A Song of Ice and Fire series by George R.R. Martin

westeros

  • Climate: variable, from the boiling hot desertlands of Dorne to the freezing North, and everything in between.
  • People: Westeros has many noble families with very delicate alliances, as well as lesser nobility. Much of the population is not quite as fortunate. And if you dare venture beyond the Wall, there are the terrifying Wildlings!
  • Language: Low Valyrian (common tongue), Asshai, Summer Tongue, very occasionally High Valyrian.
  • Notable landmarks/places to visit: King’s Landing is the capital of the Seven Kingdoms, and the Red Keep within is certainly a sight to see. For those unafraid of heights or after an adrenaline rush, the Eyrie is highly recommended. Far to the North lies Winterfell, home to the Stark family, and if you travel even further north you will come across the Wall, a formidable defense between the Seven Kingdoms and the Wildlings. And if you cross the Narrow Sea and leave the land of Westeros, you will come to Essos, home to the Dothroki horselords and many great and beautiful cities. And perhaps a few dragons.

Do you fancy visiting any of these places? Where would your ‘fantasy holiday’ take you?

30 thoughts on “Fantasy Friday #8: Fancy A Holiday?”

    1. I do love the Starks, but I’m not sure how cosy Winterfell would be? It always looks so grey and bleak there! I’m excited to see how Highgarden, home of the Tyrells looks, because it sounds pretty beautiful =)

      Not the Shire??

    1. Oh dear! Just get stocked up on anti-histamines before you go then ;D The Shire would be my ultimate fantasy place to live in/holiday at, I have to admit.

      Where would yours be?

      1. If I can avoid a war I would pick Auda from Abercromie’s world. I would love to see some of the ancient buildings crafted by the Maker. Or the Elderglass in Scott Lynches world. Or just go through Jones’ Tough Guide to Fantasyland with her as a guide.

        Obviously there is something about magical architecture that interests me.

      2. I’ve not read any of Joe Abercrombie’s books, but I have all The First Law books and it’s high up on my list =) I’d also love to visit the University in Patrick Rothfuss’ The Name of the Wind – and maybe be a student there ;D

        Oh, I completely get the fascination with it!

  1. I’m not sure if Middle Earth is for me, but I would love to take a friend to visit Hobbiton and Rivendell. Maybe for their birthday? A visit to Hogsmeade, however, is a yearly thing. Can’t get enough of the place. I once visited the Eyrie and NO THANK YOU, they won’t be seeing me again.

    1. Oh, those hobbits sure know how to throw birthday parties! ;D Apart from the custom that your friend would then have to give gifts to everyone else, rather than receive them…

      Christmas shopping at Hogsmeade – always a treat! And a drink at the Three Broomsticks afterwards to warm yourself up =)

      Haha! I could never brave the Eyrie, I am TERRIFIED of heights and just reading about the ascent about there made me all jelly-legged. Total wimp…

  2. It would always be Middle-earth for me. Areas of great beauty coupled with areas of devastation, that can be beautiful in their own way, would draw me every time. Of course this would be the Middle-earth as represented by the combination of actual physical New Zealand locations and the great graphics work of Weta Digital from the LOTR films.

    Where is my ticket?

    1. I love how we pretty much can visit Middle-earth, as so many of the places featured in the LotR films are actual New Zealand landscapes – minus some of the architecture of course! 😉

      Your ticket… um… that’ll be… £1,000,000! >=D It’s really difficult to get to these places.

  3. You think of the most clever posts! I mean… why didn’t I think of this????? I don’t know which fantasy place I would pick!! Hogwarts has a big war coming, LOTR does too… so I might have to go with Westeros but then again everyone dies there! LOL!!!

    1. Haha! I know, it’s actually kind of a tough decision, right? There are lots of nice places in Westeros but you really don’t want to get caught on the wrong side, and even if you were in the Shire at the time of Frodo’s journey you’d be in danger from Saruman and his cronies!

  4. This is such an awesome feature idea! High fantasy is one of my favourite genres. I only just recently finished listening the Lord of The Rings trilogy. Loved it to bits. ❤ I am already missing the world and characters. Def need to watch the movies at some point!

    1. Thanks Renu =D Glad to hear you enjoyed Lord of the Rings, it’s one of my absolute favourite books EVER. Have you not seen the films before either, or do you just want to refresh after listening to the books? =)

      1. I actually did get one once.

        A friend of mine made me one for my eighteenth birthday back in the day. With green ink and yellowing parchment! Ah, memories XD

        Love this feature! Amber’s post today brought me over. So glad I discovered it!

      2. Oh I want one! I think there’s a website where you can order ‘proper’ ones… although using a website for it kind of ruins the magic =P

        I’m going to the Harry Potter studio tour on Wednesday AND I’M SO EXCITED AHHHHH. I will have to buy everything in the shop… byebye money.

        Oh! I just checked her blog, thanks for drawing that to my attention! =D

      3. AHHHH. You’re based in the UK then?

        It is AMAZING. I spent £60 in the shop and even though I really could not afford it, I do not regret a single penny.

        My Sirius Black wand takes pride of place on my bookshelf :/

        Will you post about visiting on here at all?

        *I should probably get back to work*

      4. I am indeed. I paid for my friend’s ticket too, as it’s her birthday present, +£30 for the coach so it’s already costing me £90 so far. Maybe I should set a limit for the gift shop…

        You know, I didn’t even think about that, but I really should! I’m gonna get loads of photos whilst I’m there, so I can share them on here =)

  5. Where can I buy two tickets for Middle Earth and Hogsmeade? I’d definitely sneak away and take a look at Hogwarts. Perhaps I can sell something so I can participate in some lessons. There might be two guys like Fred & George who can help me 😉 And I’d love to see Rivendell and spend some time talking with elves. They are so pretty and wise.

    1. You know I hear Hogwarts does a summer school? … I WISH.

      I think Rivendell is my favourite of the Elvish places. It’s the right mix of nature and man/elf-made. Everything blends together wonderfully and it’s very majestic =)

  6. I love this! I want to travel to all of those destinations (though preferably not the parts where the evil characters reside). Middle-earth would be my top fantasy destination, but I’d love to experience the Wizarding World too, and probably Westeros as well. Other fantasy realms I’d like to vacation in include Lyra’s Oxford and the many parallel worlds of Philip Pullman’s His Dark Materials trilogy, Ravka/surrounding lands from Leigh Bardugo’s Grisha trilogy. Oh! And Tamora Pierce’s Tortall. I so want to go there. 🙂

    1. Haha, they all have their ups and downs, right? You’d either want to go during certain periods of time, or avoid certain places. I’ve not actually read His Dark Materials (I know…), I tried to read it when I was little and just never got into it. However, it’s on a pile of books in my room that I need to read soon, because I think it seems like my kind of series, so I’m giving it another chance.
      Ohh, I’ve only read one or two Tamora Pierce books so I don’t know anything about Tortall =o

  7. I love this post!

    I’d love to go to all of these places, it’s so hard to pick a top choice! I think Hogsmeade would have to be top, but I’d love to explore Westeros and Essos too….

    Other fantasy holiday destinations that would be awesome to visit: the Rain Wilds from Robin Hobb’s Rain wild chronicles, Adarlan from Throne of Glass & the Seven Kingdoms from Graceling.

    1. Hogsmeade is definitely somewhere I would go. Westeros yes, but probably only certain parts, or maybe when there was less constant fighting 😛

      I thought about Adarlan, but we don’t learn too much about it so I wasn’t sure about adding it to this!

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