By the time you read this, I’ll either be in the frantic final throes of packing or blissfully winging my way across the Atlantic. That’s because I have the opportunity of a lifetime: taking a tour of England that is all based around Arthurian legend!
I’ve been dreaming about taking this tour since I first heard about it a few years ago. The leader is the guy who helped Marion Zimmer Bradley research the Mists of Avalon (which is what inspired me to write my books). We will have special guests on parts of the tour, including internationally renowned Arthurian scholar Geoffrey Ashe, modern-day Bard Kevan Manwaring, and other scholars on mythology and ancient sacred sites. Poor Mr. Ashe has no idea what he’s in for – a whole lot of questions about how to attack and defend a hill fort, plus anything else I can think of. His is a brain I can’t wait to pick!
Anyway, since I’m going to be gone two weeks, there will be no new posts here until June 16, which is our two year blogiversary! After that, I’ll do a series on sites from my trip and things I learned about the legends. Here’s a preview, by way of the itinerary of my trip:
Day 1: Travel to London, then to Whewell on the way to Glastonbury (which will be in all three books of my trilogy).
Day 2: Tour Glastonbury, including Wearyall Hill and the Holy Thorn, drinking from Chalice Well, climbing the Tor and visiting Glastonbury Abbey.
Day 3: Visit Cadbury castle, one of the sites thought to be home to Camelot. (This is one of the settings in book 2.) See the ancient Druid oaks of Gog and Magog.
Day 4: Travel to Cornwall, stopping at the holy well of St. Clether. Tour Tinagel castle and Merlin’s Cave. (I can’t wait for you guys to see where we’re staying in Tintagel. It’s breathtaking!)
Day 5: Visit the faerie glen of St. Nectan, the village of Boscatle and Rocky Valley (which has two Bronze Age carvings in a Cretan labyrinth).
Day 6: Head to Penzance and St. Michael’s Mount. Quality time by the sea.
Day 7: Take in the stone circles of Boscowen-un and the Merry Maidens, along with the stone monoliths called The Pipers. Visit the holy wells Madron and Sancreed.
Day 8: Visit haunted Bodmin Moor and the area made famous by Daphne Du Maurier. (I’m very excited about this because I want to write a gothic fantasy someday and am hoping to get the thread a of plot based in local legend.) Spend time in Dartmoor and Marlborough.
Day 9: Journey to Stonehenge for private access inside the stone circle to witness a real Druid sunrise ritual. Meet J.P. Reedman, who I interviewed, and whose book, Stone Lord, I reviewed. Visit Avebury – the largest stone circle in the world – West Kennet long barrow – the largest burial mound in Europe – and Silbury Hill.
Day 10: Travel back home, no doubt in awe and incredibly grateful for all I’ve seen.
This trip includes several items on my Bucket List. There are no words for how excited I am. I can’t even believe this is really happening. This is invaluable research for my books, a precious networking opportunity with Arthurian scholars and just plain fun for a geek like me. I won’t have Internet access while I’m there, but you’ll get plenty of photos and stories when I get back. I hope you all have fun while I’m gone. I’d tell you to behave, but I know my readers better than that!
Wow! Sounds like the coolest trip ever! Exciting, educational, great views… It’s official. I’m completely envious.
Thanks, Kit! I think it’s going to be great!
I think you’re right! Have a blast!
Oh how fun for you! So glad you are able to do this.
Thanks, Barb. Nice to hear from you. I hope all is well.
Incredible tour! I’d love to go on that tour. Will you have photos of the places you see? Can’t wait to read about it.
Hi Jay! Yes, I’ll have a ton of photos when I get back. I’ll also post more info on how you can join the tour in the future.
Great! Looking forward to the photos.
Sunrise at Stonehenge! Take photos! I’m so jealous. 🙂
You know I will!
Do you have a web address for the tour? We are going in Sept. and I would love to do some or all of this.
I do, but I don’t want to promote it publicly until I get back so that I know for sure it’s something I’d recommend. Are we Facebook friends? I’ll private message you the link.
Enjoy Nicole. I’ve been to many of those places and they are a treat. Can’t wait to hear about the ones I’ve missed.
Enjoy… Although I’m not far from Avebury (I’ve even cycled there and back) and have visited most of the places, I still get a buzz from them and can remember my childhood awestruck visits as if they were yesterday.
Too bad we can’t meet while I’m there!
Today, Glastonbury is an eclectic town that attracts tourists, locals, Arthurian legend enthusiasts, Christians and pagans alike. What it may once have been can only be guessed at, but everyone seems to agree there is something unique about the site. Exactly what that is is up to you.
I couldn’t agree more!