7 great books about travelling

Since now is the time many people are heading off on holiday, I thought I'd compile a list of 7 great books about travelling, which you can read on a plane or at any other time. I chose books which were specifically about travelling rather than books which involved characters making journeys but where the journey was not the main focus of the book.

Around the World in 80 Days by Jules Verne

While this is a fictional adventure story rather than a proper travelogue, it’s still a cracking read.

Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert

Opinions are divided on this book, but then you could say that about most books. Some people see it as self-indulgent, which, in a way, I suppose it is, but in another way, the author experiences feelings I think many of us can understand and tries to resolve them by travelling to discover the world and herself. She’s not the first, she won’t be the last, but she has written a book many people love.

I'm off then: losing and finding myself on the Camino de Santiago by Hape Kerkeling

This is another book which divides opinion. The first point to note is that it was written about 10 years ago so much of the information about the trip is now out of date, so don’t take this as a guidebook. Instead it’s one man’s experience of the trip and what he learns from it.

Long Way Round by Ewan McGregor and Charley Boorman

You may have seen the TV show, if not, I’m sure there are plenty of clips on YouTube, but the book gives a new perspective and although McGregor and Boorman are both actors rather than professional writers, they’re either decent writers naturally or they’ve had some help (or both).

7 Years in Tibet by Heinrich Harrer

This was turned into a film starring Brad Pitt, which is also well worth a watch. This book is the original, genuine story on which the film was based and is a fascinating account of a closed area before it was closed off to the world.

The Great Railway Bazaar by Paul Theroux

OK I love trains, which is probably just as well because I commute in them every day and I love them in spite of everything dearest Abellio throws at me. Even if you don’t love trains, this is still well worth a read.

Three Men in a Boat by Jerome K Jerome

This is one of my all-time favourite books. Yes the language has dated a bit, but it’s still perfectly understandable and the book is just gentle fun.

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