Someday I would love to go walking in Yorkshire, in the United Kingdom! I would love to explore the literary landscapes, visit the home of the Brontes, see for myself the moors described in The Secret Garden and in Wuthering Heights. But in the meantime, I have been doing some “virtual walking” around Yorkshire, and getting to know some of its famous landmarks.
This virtual walking is really a lot of fun! I have connected my Fitbit, which tracks my daily steps, to a non-profit website (and app) out of Scotland called “World Walking.” This organization was designed to help motivate people to walk more and focus on good health.
They have put together many different walks you can choose, and you can walk solo or create a team of walking friends to help you reach your chosen destination. It’s teamwork rather than competition. When you choose your walk, it is broken up into milestones, which are destinations you reach on your way to finishing the complete walk. For each milestone, there are photos and a written section that explains the historical and cultural significance of that location. There is also a link so you can see the street view on Google and look around you at almost any time!
I have loved getting to know more about Yorkshire! It has definitely encouraged and increased my walking — it takes 547,880 steps to complete my Yorkshire route!
Becoming more familiar with that part of England has also piqued my interest in the literature that comes from that area. There are many authors that are either from Yorkshire or who lived and died there, or who live there now. Susan Hill was born in Yorkshire. The Bronte sisters are perhaps the most famous writers who lived and died there. J.R.R. Tolkien, Alan Bennett, Winifred Holtby, Joanne Harris, Kate Atkinson, are all authors with connections to Yorkshire. I originally thought that as I did my virtual walking around Yorkshire (see the map of my route), that I would read books by these authors. I have been reading (and loving) some of Susan Hill’s books, and I am now listening to the audiobook of Charlotte Bronte’s, Jane Eyre, but I’m afraid I will finish my walking goal before I’m able to put much of a dent into my Reading_Yorkshire goal!
If you are a walker, or interested in doing more walking, you would find this site very motivating. Please do check out worldwalking.org!