Are you looking for inspiration? You want to go on a trip, but you don’t know exactly where? What you’re in the mood for? Well, here we are to stimulate your wanderlust in a different way this time: with a selection of our favourite travel books!

 

Travel literature has sometimes been overlooked, however, it is a great way not only of inspiring ourselves for our next travels, but also of travelling without getting out of the house. The destinations chosen for our writers are not what’s most important in these tales, as they all hide a journey of self-discovery, they all teach us that every travel experience is personal and different. Your trip to the Kilimanjaro won’t be the same as your neighbour’s, but we don’t even need to go that far. There are probably several places that you’ve visited more than once, and we’re absolutely sure that each of those experiences was different. The place probably changed a little, but do you know what had changed the most between those trips? You!

 

Weather you’re a fan of travel literature, or you have never read anything of the genre, don’t miss our selection of travel books. Wonderful experiences await you for sure, and who knows? You may find that inspiration you’re looking for.

Classic travel books

There are many essential classic travel books, but we had to stick to a selection. Some of the following will sound familiar and some not, but all are well worth reading!

  1. On the Road, by Jack Kerouac: A classic not only among travel books, but probably the most famous work of the Beat Generation. Its title itself is inspiring, and it’s a good partner to get to know the highlights of the North American geography.
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  1. Homage to Catalonia, by George Orwell: A trip to Catalonia, and a trip back in history, as this narrates the experiences and views of the writer during the Spanish Civil War, where he fought with the Republican forces. Another, harsher way of travelling.
  2. Travels of Charley: In search of America, by John Steinbeck: The author of the classic The Grapes of Wrath also added this gem to the genre of travel books, a travelogue of a road trip around the United States.
  3. Venice, by Jan Morris: This wonderful depiction of Venice by author Jan Morris will surely inspire to travel to the sinking Italian city. It’s considered to be one of the best travel books ever written, and that is quite a big statement!
  4. As I Walked Out One Midsummer Morning, by Laurie Lee: The Spanish Civil War casts certain fascination on English writers, and this author is proof of that. The title of the book truly describes its beginning: Lee wakes up one morning and decides to walk from his village in Cotswolds to London, the capital. After that, he will decide to continue is trip by foot down to Spain, where he will live the outbreak of the war. Impossible to put it down until the very last page.

Wanderlust & A Field Guide To Getting Lost, by Rebecca Solnit: Not exactly travel books maybe, but these two works by essay writer Rebecca Solnit are truly one of a kind, and offer an interesting and essential approach to travelling and its meaning. Wanderlust offers a historical and philosophical approach to the act of walking, whereas A Field Guide to Getting Lost talks memory, mapmaking and uncertainty. Besides inspiring you, these books will make you think.

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Other inspirational travel books

The following travel books offer a different but equally interesting approach to travelling. Four other essential reads!

  1. Vagabonding: An Uncommon Guide to the Art of Long-Term World Travel, buy Rolf Potts: If you’re thinking on going on a long trip, this practical book will be of help. All you need to know to adjust to “life in the road”, managing resources and enjoying the process.
  2. The Beach, by Alex Garland: Sometimes, when travelling, we’re trying to reach our paradisiac and particular utopia. That’s what Richard (played by Leonardo DiCaprio in the film of the same name directed by Danny Boyle) is looking for when he lands in an East Asian beach – and that utopia will be as beautiful as frightening.
  3. A short walk in the Hindu Kush, by Eric Newby: This one could also be in the previous section of this list of travel books. A British Classic, this one is guaranteed to make you laugh, as its main character takes on a hike north-east of Kabul… completely unprepared and with no experience at all.

The following travel books offer a different but equally interesting approach to travelling. Four other essential reads!

  1. Vagabonding: An Uncommon Guide to the Art of Long-Term World Travel, buy Rolf Potts: If you’re thinking on going on a long trip, this practical book will be of help. All you need to know to adjust to “life in the road”, managing resources and enjoying the process.
  2. The Beach, by Alex Garland: Sometimes, when travelling, we’re trying to reach our paradisiac and particular utopia. That’s what Richard (played by Leonardo DiCaprio in the film of the same name directed by Danny Boyle) is looking for when he lands in an East Asian beach – and that utopia will be as beautiful as frightening.
  3. A short walk in the Hindu Kush, by Eric Newby: This one could also be in the previous section of this list of travel books. A British Classic, this one is guaranteed to make you laugh, as its main character takes on a hike north-east of Kabul… completely unprepared and with no experience at all.
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  1. Wild, by Cheryl Strayed: Probably one of the travel books that has had more impact in our contemporary pop culture, as we’re ironically told in Gilmore Girls when Lorelei “does” Wild. Strayed (played by Reese Witherspoon in the film of the same title) decides to walk along the west coast alone. A journey of self-discovery.

 

So which of the following travel books is going to go straight to your wish list? Keep in mind that these are just a few of the many gems that you can find in the genre. If you’re keen on travel literature, don’t forget to share your favourites with us!

Author
At GowithOh, we are an enthusiastic team of self-confessed Europhiles who are passionate about travel. We especially love the variety of city breaks possible in Europe, from the historic UNESCO heritage cities like Prague, to the more cosmopolitan beachside destinations like Barcelona. We love discovering the hidden gems in different cities and sharing them with our fans so everyone can benefit and enjoy the perfect city break in Europe.