Reading goes hand in hand with traveling. Books open you up to new places, new experiences, and new adventures, all from the comfort of your own home. They broaden your horizons and sometimes inspire you to travel to new places. Here are our favorite travel books of all time:
1. BEYOND THE SKY AND THE EARTH, A JOURNEY INTO BHUTAN
Beyond the Sky and the Earth written by Jamie Zeppa, is a story about going outside of your comfort zone. Jamie, a very naive young adult, travels to Bhutan after graduating from college to teach English. Instantly, she regrets her decision, with Bhutan being nothing she expected it to be. Within a week of arriving, Jamie strongly considers catching the next flight back to Canada. A string of events forces her to remain in Bhutan and after giving it a little time, Jamie falls in love with Bhutan. This is not only a story about what it is like to live and work in Bhutan. It is also a story about stumbling onto the unexpected, going outside of your comfort zone to do something challenging, and having an experience that changes your life in so many ways.
2. TURN RIGHT AT MACHU PICCHU, REDISCOVERING THE LOST CITY ONE STEP AT A TIME
This book will make you want to travel to Machu Picchu. And if you have plans to go to Machu Picchu, you definitely should read this book first. Written by Mark Adams, this book tells the story of what it is like to follow in the footsteps of Hiram Bingham and trek to Machu Picchu. Only Mark Adams has no outdoor experience, making this book hilarious, laugh out loud funny. But along the way, you learn about the history behind Machu Picchu, its “discovery” by Hiram Bingham, and what it is really like to go trekking in remote areas of Peru.
3. INTO THIN AIR
Written by Jon Krakauer, covers the disaster on Mt. Everest in 1996. Most people are familiar with the story, especially since the release of the movie “Everest” in 2015. Jon Krakauer’s account is shocking and poignant. At the time, he was working as a journalist for Outside magazine. When he signed up for this climb, he had no idea about the disaster the Everest climb would become. His story gives a realistic insight into what went wrong during the summit attempt and how it changed the lives of so many people. For anyone with an interest in hiking and adventure, this is one of the best books out there.
4. SIHPROMATUM, I GREW MY BOOBS IN CHINA
The story about Savannah Grace, a 14 year-old-girl who unwillingly goes on a four-year a backpacking trip around the world with her family. Savannah is totally against the idea of giving up her life, her home, and her friendships to go on this journey. And it is not an easy journey. Her family travels to remote, off-the-beaten-track destinations, living on a very tight budget. This leads to some amazing misadventures and minor catastrophes. During the journey, Savannah changes a lot. This is a quick and easy read, a memoir written by Savannah. It’s very personal and holds nothing back.
5. INTO THE WILD
Another great book by Jon Krakauer. Krakauer tells the story of Christopher McCandless, a young man from a well-to-do family that hitchhiked into the wilderness and died of starvation four months later. This is the story about what would motivate someone to give it all up to head off into the unknown, searching for a better life. And this is another book that you may love or you may hate. You will either be inspired by McCandless’ vagabonds or hate him for his selfishness, leaving his family shattered after his death.
6. THE ALCHEMIST
Written by Paulo Coelho, tells the story about Santiago, a young shepherd that travels the world in search of treasure. This story is written like a fable, delivering the message to listen to your heart and to follow your dreams. Most people love this story for its inspirational message, but some people hate it, saying it is just a string of clichés. And some found it to be thought-provoking and inspirational.
7. VAGABONDING, AN UNCOMMON GUIDE TO THE ART OF LONG-TERM WORLD TRAVEL
Vagabonding by Ralph Potts is the ultimate guide to living a nomadic life. The message of the book is that anyone with an adventurous spirit can take time off and travel the world. His book is a basic guide to making this happen and what to do once you are on the road. This is one of the books that inspired many families to take a trip around the world. If you are considering long-term travel, put this book at the top of your list.