When you need to get away from reality, sometimes leaving your hometown doesn’t get you far enough. Fortunately, that place just outside reality, the place that exists only on celluloid, in books, and in our minds, is home to some of the most seductive vacation spots with the power to transport you into another world entirely.
It’s also where the worst of purgatories reside, so you won’t want to get too deeply lost in that vast vortex of imagination; we wouldn’t want you to spend your two weeks off stumbling through H.P. Lovecraft’s foreboding Arkham, nor would we recommend traveling all the way to the Little Prince’s B-612, which, other than a vain rose, a few small volcanoes, and some weed-like plant life, doesn’t have too much to offer visitors. We’ve gotten lost in bad books and movies and comic books before, too, so we’ve put together a selective insider’s Baedeker to only the very best imaginary vacation spots we wish we could visit. Follow our guide, below the jump, and tell us where else you would go.
A Bacchanalian land of milk and honey, the city dreamt up by the 13th-century Middle English poem “The Land of Cockaigne” — one of the famous medieval Kildare Poems — has streets made of cakes and none of the strife associated with peasant life. Glut and hedonism are the law of the land, where every material wish is immediately granted. The poem’s original intent was something of a rebuke, but it did a bad job of defaming the orgiastic fantasyland, where, in the words of T.I., you can have whatever you like. The poem only whetted humanity’s ravenous appetite for such a place; the Brother Grimm later wrote the city into German culture as Schlarraffenland, and numerous writers and entertainers have assimilated the idea into their own cultures and languages as well. Cockaigne is where vacationers go to give up on Apollo, give into Dionysus, and feast on excess to their voracious hearts’ content.
Must-see attractions: Edible streets, cheese rain