17 April 2020
Do you often find yourself sitting on your sofa reading and daydreaming about being that character in your book? The one who’s exploring the world, having fantastic adventures and meeting incredible people? Books are a wonderful source for travel inspiration and a delightful way to help us discover new destinations that we may never have contemplated visiting before.
From literary classics to contemporary fiction and travel writing, there are so many inspiring reads to excite your travel bug. Next time you want that feeling of wanderlust, try skipping the travel section and head for something a little more creative. Read on for a few of our favourites!
The Snow Leopard – Peter Matthiessen
This inspirational journey will take you into the depths of the Himalayas as Matthiessen describes his account of his two-month search for the snow leopard. Both a physical and a spiritual exploration, this adventure will take your breath away.
In a Sunburned Country – Bill Bryson
Bill Bryson’s engaging writing never fails to transport you to far-off locations and you will feel like you are discovering Australia via this amusing tale. You will get to know the locals, understand a few of the bemusing Aussie customs, and even feel the sting of the hot Australian sun as Bryson recalls his adventures down under.
On the Road – Jack Kerouac
A beat generation cult classic, written in 1957, On the Road follows the young Sal as he travels across America with next to no money. Despite a rough and bumpy ride for Sal and his friends, this book has inspired many travellers to take to the road and explore America on a shoestring.
Almost French – Sarah Turnbull
Who doesn’t dream of living in a quaint apartment in the centre of Paris, waking up to the smell of fresh baguettes and meeting a handsome Frenchman who sweeps you off your feet? This memoir of an Australian in Paris explores culture clashes, misunderstandings and the utter joys that come with living in a foreign city.
The Quiet American – Graham Greene
Set in Vietnam during the 1950s, this novel depicts the unsettling times when French and British colonies were uprooted by the Americans. Despite the tumultuous story line, the beautiful setting of Vietnam will draw you in and make you want to explore this fascinating country.
Love in the Time of Cholera – Gabriel Garcia Marquez
This tale of true love and destiny transports you to the Caribbean in the early 1900s. Marquez’s witty humour and wretched characters will make you laugh and cry while enticing you to experience life in the sunny climes of the Caribbean.
The Adventures of Tintin – Hergé
With excitement for both young and old, Tintin and Snowy’s adventures across the globe will quickly have you hunting for clues to find your passport. From Egypt to India, Belgium and Nepal, Tintin will bring out the most intrepid of adventurers in everyone!
The Beach – Alex Garland
While this tale of British backpackers searching for paradise may have its consequences, it also transports you to the beautiful islands of Thailand. Endless beaches, monsoonal rains and fresh, local food are conjured up in Garland’s cult travel and backpacking novel.
The Great Railway Bazaar – Paul Theroux
Paul Theroux is a highly regarded American travel writer whose books explore not only the places he visits but also the nature of travel itself. His most well-known book, The Great Railway Bazaar, explores life, people and precious moments during train travel, from London’s Victoria Station, to Asia and the Trans-Siberian express.
Around the World in 80 Days – Jules Verne
Nothing says travel more than a hot air balloon and an improbable adventure! Phileas Fogg and Passepartout take on the challenge of circumnavigating the world in 80 days in a hot air balloon in order to win £20,000. Many mishaps and catastrophes occur along the way as they meet unusual characters and travel from country to country.
If you'd like to visit one of the locations these books were set in or would love to visit the destination of your favourite book, get in touch with your Travel Counsellor to plan your trip!