Looking for some books to inspire wanderlust? Take a look at these 8 books to get your travel on!
One thing I always pack in my suitcase is a great book. I’ve always had a love for reading at a young age, and more notably when I started studying literature. There’s something so magical about books and their ability to transport the reader.
Usually I go through at least two books during a week long trip. Yea, I’m a little obsessed with reading.
Today I thought it would be fun to share with you some of my favorite books that inspire wanderlust. I’ve read each of these books (and watched some of the movies too) and can confidently say each novel has the ability to inspire you to travel.
Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert
If you are looking for a book about inspiring solo female travel, Eat, Pray, Love is the book for you. Elizabeth Gilbert, an American woman in her 30’s decides to go on a solo trip around the world to find herself after her marriage collapses. She eats in Italy, prays at an ashram in India, and finds love in Bali. This memoir is a fascinating read and shines beauty on each of the places she visits.
Love Elizabeth’s ability to inspire? Check out her TEDtalk about how everyone is a genius. (I watched this in one of my creative non-fiction classes and fell in love!)
Circling The Sun by Paula McLain
If Kenya is a destination you are itching to learn about, Circling the Sun is the book for you. Set in Kenya, this novel follows Beryl, an independent English woman who was raised by her father in the new English colony of Kenya. Beryl spends her time training race horses while finding company with fellow expats. Throughout the book Beryl finds romance, friendship, and her purpose of life.
This novel is historically based on Beryl Markham, who is also portrayed in the movie, Out of Africa. I recently finished this novel and was intrigued about how time and culture has changed since the early 20th century.
Want a little taste of Kenya? Why not try my Kenyan Kachumbari, a tomato and onion salad.
The Hundred-Foot Journey by Richard C. Morais
This novel will feed and inspire wanderlust! The Hundred Foot Journey follows Hassan Haji, an Indian expat in France. While working at his family’s restaurant Hassan yearns to learn classical French cuisine from the Michelin-stared restaurant across the street.
A Cook’s Tour by Anthony Bourdain
This food memoir follows bad-boy food writer, Anthony Bourdain as he travels throughout the world to find the perfect meal. From Cambodia to France, Anthony sets foot to find the most authentic food–even if it means tasting roasted lamb testicles.
Wild: From Lost To Found on the Pacific Crest Trail by Cheryl Strayed
If you’ve ever thought about hiking on the PCT, this memoir is sure to inspire (or diminish) your trip. Cheryl had lost it all– her mother, her marriage, and a purpose. On a whim Cheryl decides to hike over one thousand miles of the PCT from California to Washington alone. Filled with courage and inspiration, Wild is a story about finding yourself and your purpose.
My Life in France by Julia Child
Julia Child is one of my many food idols. This memoir follows Julia and her life in France. Moving to Paris without a lick of the language or the ability to cook, Julia takes it upon herself to form an education. From learning how to cook at Le Cordon Bleu to writing Mastering the Art of French Cooking, My Life in France dives deep into the personal life of Julia and her husband Paul.
The Sun Also Rises by Ernest Hemingway
No book will inspire wanderlust to Spain other than The Sun Also Rises. This lost generation novel follows Jake Barnes and his companions as they discover life after WWI. Filled with alcohol (I literally did a 10 page research paper just on alcoholism for my Modern Literature course) anxiety, and romance, The Sun Also Rises takes readers to Spain to encounter some of the most beautiful scenery and culture.
Side note: It is said that this book established Hemingway as one of the most prominent writers in the 20th century.
Side side note: I totally included drink recipes in my research paper.
The Sisterhood Of The Traveling Pants by Ann Brashares
Last but not least is The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants. This young-adult novel focuses on four friends who are spending the summer apart. While shopping they encounter a pair of jeans that magically fits each of the girls perfectly. This coming of age novel finds itself in love in Greece, looking for answers in Mexico, and finding friendship in Maryland.
That’s it for my 8 books to inspire wanderlust. Do you have any books that inspire you to travel? Let me know in the comments below!