From Portland to Paris: Top Literature Picks For Travel Destinations

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Fall season is coming up, bringing lower airfares as well as a heightened sense of wanderlust along with it. Whether one is on a 6-hour train ride, or stopping for a coffee in the ski lodge, an enjoyable read is always essential for travel. With fall's many new releases also comes those in literature, and these are the top picks of the season along with corresponding destinations.


Paris, France


Before it gets blistering cold in the winter, fall in Paris is not only enchanting but also allows total immersion with fewer lines to all the museums, churches, and most other attractions. When visiting some of the many parks and gardens, a fine pick in French literature to accompany you is always appreciated. Swann's Way: In Search of Lost Time, Vol. 1 by Marcel Proust, a French classic, will surely be a favorable companion to understand how the French author flourished under a time of great cultural and artistic advancement in the 19th and 20th centuries in Paris. 


Fontainebleau, France


If fall foliage is a notion that you find more appealing, Fontainebleau is a stellar option to explore nature from bike riding through fall leaves to rock climbing. Since most of this time will be spend enjoying nature, poems are a best fir for getting a quick reading done when resting in a lodge. The poems of Charles Baudelaire, especially Le Fleur Du Mal will charm your vacation a little more with elegant, romantic prose.


Istanbul, Turkey


Istanbul remains an intriguing hub of culture, architect, and art with a rich historical background. Not only is Istanbul known for vibrant, friendly locals, but one also has the option of shopping in a bazaar while the sun sets, where the continents meet. In order to fully comprehend the history unfolding all around you, The Bastard of Istanbul by Elif Shafak will provide further insight to the impacts of the Armenian genocide that shapes much of Turkish history. 


Munich, Germany


A vacation to Germany is always guaranteed to be a pleasurable one, in part due to the ever-present idyllic scenery as well as the infamous Oktoberfest held in the fall. While enjoying a pint, extend the humor by diving into Russian Disco: Everyday Lunacy on the Streets of Berlin by Wladimir Laminar to escape into the excitement of German culture in the 90's. 


British Columbia, Canada



While basking in the awe-inspiring mountains of Canada, enjoy the work of transcendentalist Henry David Thoreau, in the work of Walden. Incorporating the philosophy of simple living amongst nature that Thoreau portrays, get lost in the Canadian wilderness. 



Portland, Oregon, USA



To pair with the outlandish food scene and the vast amount of microbreweries - not to mention beautiful fall weather and nature in Oregon, as well as the numerous amount of reading spots to go along with it, pick up the eccentric, not-your-average sci-fi novel Never Let Me Go by Kazoo Ishiguro to question fate and connection in the City of Roses. 


Transylvania, Romania




Fabled Translyvania, home to tales of werewolves, vampires and mystical forests, also offers thermal springs and a step back in time with its architecture and rich history. Dracula by Bram Stoker guides the reader through the mysterious Bran Castle that is adopted in the text, chronicling and setting the tone for an Eastern European setting that allows an escape in the fall. 


Kyoto, Japan


Fall happens to be the peak of cherry blossom season, and of course, fall foliage. Kyoto is where old Japanese culture meets new Japanese culture, exposing rich religious and architectural roots. Upon arriving in Kyoto, The Old Capital by Yasunari Kawabata will be supplemental to your journey. Kawabata, winner of the first Japanese Nobel Prize for Literature, tells the story of young girls residing with her family in Kyoyo when she slowly discovers more and more about her past. With the enchanting backdrop, this story will provide further knowledge from a Japanese voice. 

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