Discover Hay-on-Wye: Britain's booktown
Sitting on the border between Wales and the medieval English county of Herefordshire is the little town of Hay-on-Wye. While historic in its own right, thanks to a central castle which remains to this day, Hay has made a new name for itself over the past fifty years by being the booktown of Britain. In its heyday (pardon the pun), Hay was home to more than fifty independent booksellers. Today, that number is slightly smaller but you still can’t walk more than ten metres without catching sight of a quaint and curious bookshop.
Hay is a sweet and darling place to roam around; there are plenty of opportunities to grab a coffee, get some lunch, or have a drink at the local pub. There are even inns and b&bs to stay at. But the bookshops are why people come from far and wide, every single day, to visit Hay-on-Wye.
The town’s most iconic bookshop is named after the man who transformed the town in the first place: Richard Booth’s Bookshop. This enormous wooden building stands out amongst its old stone neighbours and offers a captivating atmosphere for bookworms to browse for hours on end. Then there are the themed bookshops like Murder and Mayhem, a place which specialises in crime, horror, and mystery novels.
Hay-on-Wye is a place where the magic of books can literally be felt in the air. Come for the books, stay for the warm food, friendly company, and great country pubs.