Reading while traveling might not be the first thing that comes to mind when you’re trying to soak up the sun and sand, but it can be an excellent way to learn about your destination and give you a better insight into what you’re experiencing. It’s also one of the best ways to occupy that cross-country flight or layover before your connecting flight!
The summer months are the perfect time to pack your bags and explore an exciting new locale, so before you leave, make sure you have at least one of these awesome travel books with you … even when your carry-on is for your commute or carpooling, this list of the 7 best travel books should keep you busy all summer long.
The Slow Road to Tehran by Rebecca Lowe
The Slow Road to Tehran is the perfect summer read for anyone who loves travel books. Rebecca Lowe takes the reader on a journey, exploring the country’s culture and history.
It’s a story of a woman on a bike and a journey that will change your perceptions. She began her journey across the Middle East in 2015, as the Syrian War raged and the refugee crisis grew worse. Lowe’s 11,000-kilometer journey began in Europe, and then took her to Turkey, Lebanon, Jordan, Egypt, Sudan, the Gulf, and Iran as part of her quest to understand this troubled region and its relationship with the West.
A compelling story filled with humor, adventure, and a deep understanding of Middle Eastern landscapes and history. The writer recounts the beauty, kindness, and complexity of the lands that she visits with illuminating insight.
Border Crossings by Emma Rick
Emma Fick’s Border Crossings is a great choice if you’re looking for a summer read that will transport you to another place. The book follows the author’s train journey from Beijing to Moscow, and her writing is beautiful and evocative.
With over 200 watercolor illustrations and handwritten text, Emma Fick captures her epic journey on the Trans-Siberian Railway between Beijing and Moscow, including cultural and historical information and useful travel tips along the way.
In this remarkable journey of exploration and adventure, Fick’s detailed observations, rich descriptions, and vibrant illustrations vividly depict the landscapes, food, people, and cultures she discovers. Having salty milk tea, eating shoe sole cake, and riding camels in Mongolia are just some of the memorable experiences you will read about.
Lost in the Valley of Death by Harley Rustad
Lost in the Valley of Death tells the story of the search for self-discovery in a country where the path to spiritual enlightenment can be treacherous, even fatal, as well as the extreme ways we sometimes seek fulfillment in life.
This travelog follows the story of one charismatic American who disappeared while on a spiritual pilgrimage. Rustad’s writing is both beautiful and brutal, and the account of this trip will leave you both shaken and inspired.
Imagine a City by Mark Vanhoenacker
Through the lens of his own hometown, Vanhoenacker celebrates the cities he has come to love and know through this intimate yet expansive work. By exploring emblematic aspects of each city’s identity – road signs in Los Angeles, old gates in Jeddah, snowy streets in Sapporo – he shows us these extraordinary places that we call home, with warmth and fresh eyes.
Walking with Nomads by Alice Morrison
Perhaps because of the pandemic, new travel writing seems increasingly inward-looking, often relying heavily on memoir and self-discovery and seeking meaning in familiar places.
Consequently, Morrison’s latest adventure offers a refreshingly straightforward experience, as Morrison goes far, far away from home. Leaving a copy of her will with her parents, the Scottish-born Moroccan writer embarks on an expedition across the deserts and dunes of the Sahara and Atlas Mountains.