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Books to Inspire Travelers

Looking for some inspiration to plan your next journey into the unknown? Or maybe your trip is already planned and you want to bring along a great read to encourage your traveling frame of mind. Look into these literary gems that will educate you on the diets, traditions, people, and idiosyncrasies of cultures around the world, as well as the personal lives of the travelers who experienced them.

Book Lust to Go by Nancy Pearl – 2010 – If you could speak with Nancy Pearl, she’d be able to pinpoint the exact book to speak to your current mood, situation, and needs. The next best thing is to peruse her well-organized, extensive list of travel books, which is organized by country, city, or region. Additionally, there are categories about planes, boats, walking, and more.

A Journey Through Literary America by Thomas R. Hummel – 2009 – More of a book to motivate you to travel, rather than something you’d actually lug around with you through an airport, this large tome boasts more than 140 photographs of the places that inspired 26 of America’s greatest writers. Featured writers include: Ralph Waldo Emerson, William Faulkner, Herman Melville, Willa Cather, and Ernest Hemingway, to name just a few.


A Moveable Feast, Life Changing Food Adventures Around the World - edited by Don George – 2010 –
A compilation of travel and food essays describe worldly feasts, rare delicacies, and food horror stories from all around the world. Read about eating bat with an indigenous tribe on Fais, tea with Indian gurus, Moroccan couscous, American barbecue, and much more.

Sideways on a Scooter, by Miranda Kennedy – 2011 – An insightful and often humorous tale of Kennedy’s experiences in New Delhi after she quits her New York job and buys a one way ticket. Feel as if you’re right there alongside Kennedy as she experiences culture shock, loneliness, miscommunications, and new friendships.

The Tao of Travel, by Paul Theroux – 2011 –Theroux muses on travel writing from authors such as: Evelyn Waugh, Ernest Hemingway, Charles Dickens, Mark Twain, and, of course, Theroux himself. The chapters are organized by travel topics, such as food, trains, companions, and even one titled: “Imaginary Journeys.”

What I Eat: Around the World in 80 Diets by Peter Menzel & Faith d’Aluisio – 2010 – This photographic collection chronicles 80 people from 30 countries and all the food they eat in a single day. Each profile includes a personal story, as well as details such as age, height, and weight. The book also includes essays from prominent food and health specialists who discuss modern diets and their impact on our health and the planet.