Jane Austen History Tour in England
Study Literature by Walking in Jane Austen’s Footsteps
The Worldwide Navigators Difference
Your first opportunity to study literature starts shortly after your arrival in Winchester. Jane Austen often referred to a “Great House” in her letters, and this is that very house. Jane frequented the garden, and the caretakers of the house have created a tour so you can follow in her footsteps, or visit the spots that meant the most to Jane. You can see the Oak Room and the reading alcove there that she loved, and visit the dining room where she ate with her family. The house also has a display of relics of feminist literature.
The house where Jane Austen wrote “Pride and Prejudice” was turned into this museum. Today, visitors can see what the world around her looked like when she was writing her most famous works. You’ll get to see letters, clothing, furniture, books, jewelry and many other objects that were a part of her life. In addition to its exhibitions, the museum regularly hosts events that relate to aspects of Austen’s novels, such as lace-making, so you can see the elegance that inspired her work.
You might know Chatsworth House better as Pemberly, Mr Darcy’s estate in the 2005 film version of “Pride and Prejudice.” It’s a bit of a drive to get there, but you’ll arrive there far quicker than Elizabeth did by horse and buggy. Guests are welcome to tour the house and garden, have tea or visit the farmyard and pet the animals. There are guided tours available throughout the day, as well as audio tours if you prefer to take things at your own pace.
Today you’ll be taking another field trip to Bath, the city that Jane Austen called home after Hampshire. At the Jane Austen Centre, you can explore what effect her time in Bath had on her works. If you’ve read “Northanger Abbey” or “Persuasion,” you might recognize Bath as the city in which they take place. You’ll also learn about her life and what England looked like at the time she was writing. There’s also a unique experience in the Regency Tea, where you can dress up in clothes that Jane might’ve worn during that era and have tea in the afternoon, just as she would’ve done.
If you’ve ever wondered what a town in the English countryside looked like 200 years ago, Lacock Village is the answer. It has remained much the same in appearance since its earliest days, and because of that, it’s been a popular filming location, even making an appearance in the BBC’s version of “Pride and Prejudice.” The town may have only four intersecting streets, but it’s lined with shops and places to eat. Once you’re done strolling, visit the Fox Talbot Museum or the Lacock Abbey. If you’re looking for a little guidance, there are pre-created walks online you can download and take with you.
Winchester Cathedral is Jane’s final resting place. She was laid to rest there in 1817, and visitors can go to her grave, which is housed within the cathedral to pay their respects, or admire the plaque put up in her honor in the late 19th century. The cathedral has also created an interactive exhibit to showcase her celebrated literary achievements and educated visitors about her life and career. There’s plenty of other areas to explore in the cathedral, make a point to walk around and admire all the art and treasures on display inside, or the classic English church architecture outside.
Before jetting out, you’ll take a quick trip up to the Steventon Church. It’s in the small town of Steventon that Jane Austen was born. Though the Steventon Rectory no longer stands, there’s a lime tree at the site, rumored to have been planted by her brother. Before you leave, you’ll visit Steventon Church, where Jane and her family attended services.
Jane Austen’s legacy has survived hundreds of years after her death. On your trip to study literature related to the author, you’ll get to see what inspired her, how she lived, where she lived and the places her characters called home. Not only that, you’ll get to walk in her literal footsteps, treading the same halls she did as a writer and as a young girl.
Interested in adding or modifying activities? No problem! All Worldwide Navigator itineraries can be customized to your liking!
In collaboration with our partners