Literary tourism, whereby tourists go to places to see what writers were referring to in their works or visit the places where writers lived, used to be perceived as a branch of tourism for the upper class elite. Nowadays, this is far from the truth as various organisations and travel agencies step up their campaign to promote this branch of tourism to all parts of society.
The quest for people to see how places have influenced writing has been visible in the aftermath of many modern works. A good example is how tourists flocked to Scotland to visit Lothian purely to taste the feeling behind Dan Brown’s ‘Da Vinci code’ novel. Staying in Scotland, people have been coming for almost two centuries to see the birthplace and resting place of the ploughman poet, Robert Burns. On the other side of the Atlantic, the popularity of Florida’s coastline has recently soared as a result of the latest Stephen King novel, ‘Duma Key’. Although it is set on a fictitious island off the Florida coast, there are some references to the real places, which have grasped the interest of Stephen King fans from all over the world.
There is actually a full range of tours offered around the North America related to literary works. It is also claimed that Canada is a giant in the market just waiting to be woken, as interest so far has only come from Toronto. One of their best offers is believed to be the so-called ‘Jewish Montreal’, which gives visitors the opportunity to enhance their appreciation behind the motivation of works by authors such as Mordecai Richter and Leonard Cohen. As the agencies put it, people are offered the opportunity to travel ‘through space and time’.