Places to visit in Europe

The Canterbury Tales

To visit the Canterbury Tales, one of the most popular tourist attractions in England, is to enter Medieval England through scenes and stories which will delight all lovers of Old England. Stop off at the colourful inns, and cross the busy streets in the company of Chaucer’s pilgrims on their way to Canterbury where they were going to meditate at the tomb of Thomas à Becket.

The Canterbury Tales is an incredibly inventive exhibition. Peopled with characters from Chaucer - a 14th century writer - represented in situations full of romanticism and humour, it remains historically accurate. Each Tale is told in modern English and in French. A commentary intended for children is also available in English only.

The journey begins with a visit to the Tabard inn in London, where visitors accompany the pilgrims to the stables. Next, a walk in Southwark Street where the first tale begins. The Knight, who has drawn the short straw is waiting to tell a story of rivalry in love which finishes in a very strange way. After the Knight, it is the Miller’s turn.

Next, comes one of Chaucer’s favourite characters, the Wife of Bath. Her story is the same as that of one of King Arthur’s knights who was given a year to find the answer to the riddle, "what does a woman want most?". The visitor, drawn into the game in a typically British way, is invited to find the answer and to use it to escape a most undesirable fate!

At the end of the journey, the pilgrims sleep at the "Chequer of Hope Inn". Visitors also experience the bustle and noise of a Medieval market place where the stallholders go about their not always altogether honest business.

As you can see, the site is lively and will appeal to groups in the 11-15 age group, as well as adults who like realistic re-enactments.
Preparing for your visit
You are strongly recommended to book in advance.
Special rates for foreign schools.
Information in French, leaflets for group leaders.
Workshops during the British school holidays.
Special "ghost" tour. Medieval evening.

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