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Thursday, August 20, 2015

"My Jane Austen Pilgrimage" — guest post from Melanie!

Melanie from Melanie's Musings is dropping in this morning to make us all wanna take a little field trip... She's sharing her dream Austen pilgrimage, and seriously, even talking about it makes me want to hop on a plane!  Check out her Jane must-visits, and let us know in the comments which ones you've been to, and which need to be added to the list!

My Dream Jane Austen Pilgrimage

While many people spend their time in Bath, England marveling over the Roman Baths' infrastructure or the delight that is Sally Lunn's buns (SO GOOD), I spent the better part of my time there consumed by thoughts of Anne Elliot, Catherine Morland, and romance in general.

This was especially true the evening I went to Queen Square and the only others there were couples, all making out. I'm not sure Jane Austen would have approved.

But anyway, going to the Jane Austen Centre and visiting the Jane Austen's Bath exhibition at the Victoria Art Gallery got me thinking of all the other Jane Austen related places I'd like to visit. When I got home, I saw the Austen in August invite on The Book Rat and knew I had to share.

Here's my dream Jane Austen Pilgrimage (Maybe one day!).

1. Jane Austen House Museum

"There is nothing like staying at home, for real comfort.” -Emma

This is where Jane spent the last years of her life and did a ton of writing. I know what my visit would sound like:

Jane Austen took walks around this garden!

She looked out this window!

She slept in this room!

Do I sound slightly obsessed?

2. Chatsworth House

"Elizabeth was delighted. She had never seen a place for which nature had done more, or where natural beauty had been so little counteracted by an awkward taste. ...at that moment she felt that to be mistress of Pemberley might be something!" -Pride and Prejudice

Recognize this gorgeous home? It was used as the filming location for Pemberley in the 2005 Pride and Prejudice adaptation. And they've still got the bust of Mr. Darcy, as played by Matthew MacFadyen, available to view.

Who wants to come with me and pretend to be guests of the Darcy's?

3. The Lakes

"Elizabeth was excessively disappointed; she had set her heart on seeing the Lakes..." -Pride and Prejudice

To be completely honest, I'd never heard of The Lakes before reading P&P. Famous for its, um, lakes, mountains, and general picturesque beauty, it seems like the perfect place to do some adventurous hiking, then grab a book and chill by the lake shore.

Lizzie can stay in Derbyshire with Darcy. I'll travel north to happily soak my hemline more than three inches deep in mud.

4. The Cobb at Lyme Regis

"There was too much wind to make the high part of the new Cobb pleasant for the ladies, and they agreed to get down the steps to the lower, and all were contented to pass quietly and carefully down the steep flight, excepting Louisa; she must be jumped down them by Captain Wentworth." -Persuasion

And now, how about some time on the coast? Lyme Regis would be the perfect seaside town to explore, and Persuasion is my favorite Jane Austen novel.

My trip would be incomplete without swooning over Anne Elliot and Captain Wentworth. No jumping off tall stairs, though.

5. The Jane Austen Festival

"One cannot have too large a party." -Emma

Imagine, a room with dozens of people, all dressed in Regency finery. A ten day celebration of all things Jane, the Jane Austen Festival is JA's world in real life!

What was that, dear sir? Would I like to dance? Don't mind if I do.


Back from her very first trip to England, Melanie of Melanie's Musings spent her time in awe of its bookstores and art museums. She'd like to develop the kindness of Anne, the witty conversational style of Elizabeth, and the event planning skills of Emma. If you like, you can follow her on Twitter.

Click here to return to the Austen in August Main Page


  1. What fun! glad for your visit and Austen discoveries - thanks for sharing!

  2. omg sign me up if it ever happens - it will be a no judgement cone - we can be as Austen obsessed as we like!!

    1. I do notice a lack of gentlemen in that photo however…I wonder if it's just the photo or if we shall need dance partners only to be shunned by tall, dark serious gentlemen ONE CAN HOPE AMIRITE?

    2. You are so right.


  3. I want to go on an Austen pilgrimage, too. That is so cool that you saw Bath. Thanks for sharing, Melanie!

  4. I too desire to go on an Austen Pilgrimage. Hopefully one day.


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