I've decided on a rough path for my novel, path being the operative word here as it's going to be about an unemployed man, tired of his home life and living off benefits, who sells up his possessions and sets off an a kind of pilgrimage, visiting various different places and (hopefully) interesting characters. I don't think I have the confidence to take him outside of my own country (England), but even with the familiarity of my own country - its customs and ways, accents, etc, I still have concerns about writing authentically when it comes to places I've never been. Can this be done with research alone? Would I be able to have my character visit these various places and describe them and its landmarks in such a way that someone from that area wouldn't be able to tell I'd never actually been there? When I read novel written by an American, and set in his own country, I pay no mind when he says, "I found a room on Temple Street in the Filipino district." I just assume and take it for said that this area is indeed a Filipino area and that there is a street named Temple. But is this case? Could maybe, he have simply made up the street name? Or when the author says, "Main Street, East 5th, Bunker Hill. Shitholes of America" To an Englishman such as myself this means nothing, but does it to natives of that area? Is there a 'Main Street' an 'East 5th', a 'Bunker Hill'? And are they the 'Shitholes of America'? I suppose what I'm asking here is how accurate does one have to be when describing real towns and cities, and if you've never been to those place can it be pulled off by research alone?