Books that Will Inspire You to Travel

Books that Will Inspire You to Travel

Found yourself in a travel slump? I have just the remedy: head to your nearest bookstore, make a bee-line for the travel section, and dive headfirst into an adventure-packed, eye-opening, emotionally-gripping travel tale. I bet just skimming the back-cover synopsis will start to tickle your travel bug again.

And you’re in luck because I have a few suggestions for great travel books that will enthuse, motivate, and inspire your next trip of a lifetime.


1. Tales of a Female Nomad: Living at Large in the World

A riveting and moving tale by Rita Golden Gelman, this book tells the story of a woman who leaves behind a luxurious life in the states to quench her wandering spirit with a journey through Mexico, Guatemala, the Galapagos Islands. She tells her story through a candid and honest lens, revealing bluntly what it’s like to travel as a privileged American into other cultures.  She visits rustic and regal places all over the world, even when her choices aren’t always looked upon fondly by others.

Who should read this?

Female wanderers who feel stuck in a rut, whether it be a relationship that has gone stale or a job that no longer suits. This is the perfect novel to encourage you to take a risk and travel solo into the unknown.


2. Under the Tuscan Sun

This light and easy read is just as delightful and delicious as the film from a few years ago.  We follow author Frances Mayes in a memoir about renovating and revitalizing a neglected villa in the enchanting landscape of Tuscany, Italy. It’s filled with all the tastes and flavors you would imagine in a tucked-away village in the Italian countryside. She ignites all of our senses by painting a story with her voice that will have the palate salivating of any born traveler. 

Who should read this?

If you are looking for a light-hearted yet fantastically inspiring and entertaining inspirational memoir, this is the perfect book for you.  Perhaps you’re considering traveling to Italy but haven’t quite saved enough (or gained enough courage); this book will provide the springboard of inspiration to make it happen!


3. Born to Run

This completely unexpected memoir, full of adventure and mystery, will have you licking your fingertips as you compulsively turn the page. In this National Best Seller, Christopher McDougall — a born athlete and retired runner– sets sail to Mexico’s remote villages of Copper Canyon — “Barranca del Cobre” — to unveil the mystery of the Tarahumara Indians, who have been reputed to run ultra-marathons bare-footed and without common ailment.  It provides a heart-pounding plot and an accurate depiction of this mysterious indigenous tribe that truly is born to run.

Who should read this?

This is definitely a read for the active traveler. If you’re a runner or an ex-runner, it might inspire you to start training for your next big event. An ideal balance of action combined with spirituality, this book is highly entertaining, in addition to capturing a sincere snapshot of life among the majestic tribe of the Tarahumara Indians of Copper Canyon, Mexico. Pick this book up, and who knows what part of the world you will be running off to next.

​​a stack of three travel books, along with a pair of sunglasses, on a tropical beach with huts and a beach in the distance

4. Eat, Pray, Love

No book list would be complete without the most famous of all female travel books. This popular tome by Elizabeth Gilbert tells the story of a woman who travels to Italy, India, and Indonesia trying to figure out who she really is. ‘Eat, Pray, Love’ was on the bestseller list for 187 weeks, not to mention made into a movie where Gilbert was played by none other than Julia Roberts.


5. The DaVinci Code

Looking for inspiration to travel to France and Italy?  Dan Brown’s ‘The Da Vinci Code’ is for you. The intricate plot will help you forget about everything around you as soon as you open the first page. Many historical sights play a significant role in the development of the plot as well. Although Tom Hanks was cast in the film adaptation of this runaway best seller, France and Italy are practically characters in the book, in and of themselves!


6. Death on the Nile

If you love Egyptian history and folklore, combined with a thrilling murder mystery, you can’t go wrong with reading Agatha Christie’s ‘Death on the Nile.’ Agatha Christie truly lived a full life; what’s more, she even took a journey around the world! This book was famously written on the banks of the Nile – and if you come with us on our tour to Egypt, we’ll show you exactly where!

a person holding an open book, reading by the light of an airplane window

7. Shantaram

If you need a mammoth read, look no further! At over 600 pages, this is one of those epic books all travelers brag about after reading it! Gregory David Roberts is an Australian writer who finds himself, and an unlikely community, in India. If you’ve ever wanted to explore this part of the world, Shantaram offers a fascinating portrayal of life here. See for yourself if you like it!

8. Love with a Chance of Drowning

We love this book. Part adventure, part love story, and set on the scenes of a small and terrifying sailboat, this book asks readers to jump in along with the author as she follows her love across the Pacific. It should definitely be on your reading list! But honestly, all of Torre DeRoche’s books are wonderful. 


All in all, reading books about travel is one of the best ways to get inspired – not only to get out and see the world but also to try and figure out what life is all about. After all, while some journeys are about getting from one location to another, a journey can also be the process of soul-searching and getting to know yourself better.


The more you read, the more you think about your life, your goals, and your desires. What’s more, reading a truly inspiring book may be the push you need to do something you’ve been dreaming about. These books will definitely inspire you to take one more step towards that dream, whether it’s to make some changes in your life or plan your next trip to a dream country.

What are your favorite books about travel?  What travel book should we read next?

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