The best audiobooks for wanderlust on long road trips, which will let you travel through the Amazon, scaling Mt Everest, exploring under the sea, or unicycling across Australia!
Love Your Sister: A Searingly Honest and Inspiring Memoir of Family, Love and Unicycles written and read by Connie and Samuel Johnson
10 hrs and 45 mins, Available on Amazon $31.44
After Connie was diagnosed with breast cancer and told she wouldn’t recover, she dared her brother… to unicycle around Australia. This is a travel memoir by a brother and sister of one man’s quest to unicycle around Australia to promote breast cancer awareness, raise more than $1 million for research, and break the world record for the longest distance travelled on a unicycle.
Wild Life: Travel Adventures of a Worldly Woman by Lisa Alpine
Read by Kristi Burns, 4 hrs and 20 mins, Available on Amazon $14.95
From licking a Monet in Paris, to pushing an abusive macho honeymooner off his sailboat in the shark-infested Galapagos, to saving her toddler son from a charging bull elephant in Africa, these 14 delightful, award-winning true tales will inspire listeners to follow the call of a wild life and leave home with their doors unlocked.
Tracks: A Woman’s Solo Trek across 1700 Miles of Australian Outback by Robyn Davidson
Read by Angie Milliken, 8 hrs and 9 mins, Available on Amazon $17.46
Instead of road tripping across Australia, Robyn Davidson decided to cross the desert with four camels and a dog. She survived the horrific heat, poisonous snakes, and leering men all while looking after her camels. This is the story of a brave heroine and her love for the Australian countryside, empathy for its indigenous people and a desire to escape the trappings of her former life.
Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail by Cheryl Strayed
Read by Laurel Lefkow, 12 hrs and 59 mins, Available on Amazon $22.70
The story of a woman who had a vague and outlandish desire to recover from the catastrophes in her life by setting out on an 1100-mile solo hike. She set off on the Pacific Crest Trail from the Mojave Desert through California and Oregon to Washington State – alone. On the way, she faced rattlesnakes, bears, extreme heat and snowfalls, all while piecing her life back together.
Vagabonding: An Uncommon Guide to the Art of Long-Term World Travel written and read by Rolf Potts
4 hrs and 9 mins, Available on Amazon $14.95
Rolf Potts is a veteran traveller who explores the world on a shoestring budget. He shows you how you can take time off from your normal life, whether it is for 6 weeks or 2 years, to discover the world for yourself. This audiobook has tips for financing your trip, determining your destination, adjusting to life on the road, working or volunteering overseas, handling adversity, and how to re-assimilate back into your everyday life.
My Holiday in North Korea: The Funniest/Worst Place on Earth by Wendy E. Simmons
Read by Jeena Yi, 4 hrs and 38 mins, Available on Amazon $9.95
Simmons enters North Korea and her amusement and bewilderment quickly turn into frustration and paranoia. She learns that in North Korea, travel is truly a love affair. But, just like love, it’s a two-way street. And North Korea deprives you of all this. They want you to fall in love with the singular vision of the country they’re willing to show you and nothing more.
Seven Years in Tibet by Heinrich Harrer
Read by Mark Meadows, 11 hrs and 38 mins, Available on Amazon $20.95
This is the incredible true story of Heinrich Harrer’s escape across the Himalayas to Tibet, set against the backdrop of the Second World War. He was mountain climbing in the Himalayas when war broke out in Europe and he was then imprisoned by the British. He managed to escape and flee to Tibet where he became and friend and tutor to the Dalai Lama.
Into the Wild by Jon Krakauer
Read by Philip Franklin, 7 hrs 9 mins, Available on Amazon $16.95
The story of Christopher Johnson McCandless, a young man from a wealthy family who donated his savings to charity, abandoned his car and possessions and invented a new life. He hitchhiked to Alaska and then walked through the Alaskan wilderness with his camera, five rolls of film, an SOS note, and a diary about edible plants. His body was found six months later by a hunter.
Grandma Gatewood’s Walk: The Inspiring Story of the Woman Who Saved the Appalachian Trail by Ben Montgomery
Read by Patrick Lawlor, 7 hrs and 54 mins, Available on Amazon $22.95
Emma Gatewood told her family she was going on a walk and left her small Ohio hometown with a change of clothes and less than $200. The next anybody heard from her, this 67-year-old great-grandmother had walked 800 miles along the 2,050-mile Appalachian Trail. She was the first woman to hike the entire Appalachian Trail alone, as well as the first person – man or woman – to walk it twice and three times.
Lingo: Around Europe in Sixty Languages by Gaston Dorren
Read by George Backman, 8 hrs and 14 mins, Available on Amazon, $9.95
This audiobook is perfect for linguists or anyone who wants to learn more about European languages. It takes you through 60 languages, sharing quirky stories from their histories and looking and commonalities and differences. While investigating these languages, you are taken on a journey through remote mountain ranges in Switzerland, to Sweden, where people were so polite they only started using ‘you’ in conversation in the 1960s!
A Man on the Moon: The Voyages of the Apollo Astronauts by Andrew Chaikin
Read by Bronson Pinchot, 22 hrs and 59 mins, Available on Amazon, $17.95
Surely there is no travel story more inspiring that those of astronauts. This audiobook is a definitive account of their space missions and is based on in-depth interviews with 23 out of the 24 moon voyagers.
The Lost City of Z: A Tale of Deadly Obsession in the Amazon by David Grann
Read by Mark Deakins, 10 hrs and 6 mins, Available on Amazon
In 1925, Fawcett ventured into the Amazon with his 21-year-old son to prove the existence of an ancient civilization that he had dubbed ‘Z’. He and his expedition vanished and his story became an obsession for hundreds of scientists and adventurers who were searching for evidence of the Lost City of Z.
Into Thin Air by Jon Krakauer
Read by Philip Franklin, 9 hrs and 8 mins, Available on Amazon $16.58
This is the true story of a 24-hour period on Everest when members of three separate expeditions were caught in a storm and faced a battle against hurricane-force winds, exposure, and the effects of altitude, which ended the worst single-season death toll in the peak’s history.
Pirate Hunters: Treasure, Obsession, and the Search for a Legendary Pirate Ship by Robert Kurson
Read by Ray Porter, 8 hrs and 24 mins, Available on Amazon $23.95
This is the story of two men who are willing to risk everything to find the Golden Fleece, the ship of the infamous pirate Joseph Bannister. They travel the globe in search of historic documents and accounts of the great pirate’s exploits, face down dangerous rivals, and battle the tides of nations and governments and experts. But it’s only when they learn to think and act like pirates – like Bannister – that they become able to go where no pirate hunters have gone before.
Trespassing Across America: One Man’s Epic, Never-Done-Before (and Sort of Illegal) Hike Across the Heartland by Ken Ilgunas
Read by Andrew Elden, 7 hrs and 44 mins, Available on Amazon $21.74
In Movement There Is Peace: Stumbling 500 Miles Along the Way to the Spirit by Elaine Orabona Foster and Joseph Wilbred Foster
Read by Pamela Almand, 9 hrs and 14 mins, Available on Amazon $17.95
This story follows a doctor who walks away from her life to cure her anxiety. She and her husband walk the Camino de Santiago and along the way they experience emotional lightness, enjoy an adventure without plans, and make a leap of faith than brings them closer to paradise.
Overbooked by Elizabeth Becker
Read by Alma Cuervo, 17 hrs and 19 mins, Available on Amazon $22.95
Tourism, fast becoming the largest global business, employs one out of 12 persons and produces $6.5 trillion of the world’s economy. In a groundbreaking book, Elizabeth Becker uncovers how what was once a hobby has become a colossal enterprise with profound impact on countries, the environment, and cultural heritage
The Wave: In Pursuit of the Rogues, Freaks and Giants of the Ocean by Susan Casey
Read by Kirsten Potter, 10 hrs and 26 mins, Available on Amazon $20.95
Susan Casey follows extreme surfers around the world and they seek to conquer a 100-foot wave. Their exploits are juxtaposed against scientists’ efforts to understand the destructive powers of waves – from the tsunami that wiped out 250,000 people in the Pacific in 2004, to the 1,740-foot wave that leveled part of the Alaskan coast.
On the Trail of Genghis Khan: An Epic Journey Through the Land of the Nomads by Tim Cope
Read by Philip Rose, 18 hrs and 39 mins, Available on Amazon $25.95
Adventurer Tim Cope set off on a three-year journey on horseback across the length of the Eurasian steppe, from the ancient capital of Mongolia to the Danube River in Hungary. His travels take him through wolf-infested plateaus, over glaciers, scorching deserts, and deep forests. He is alone except for his dog and on the way he experiences incredible hospitality from those who welcome him along the way.
To Dakar and Back: 21 Days Across North Africa by Motorcycle by Lawrence Hacking
Read by Mike Chamberlain, 11 hrs and 39 mins, Available on Amazon $21.95
This is the incredible tale of the Paris-Dakar Rally, a 7,000-mile journey from the glitzy streets of Paris to the hinterland of northwestern Africa. In this audiobook, you will hear amazing true tales of danger, from blinding sandstorms to endless vistas of towering dunes. Enduring these incredible hardships with perseverance, tenacity, ingenuity, and sometimes tragedy, the adventurers profiled here truly embody the triumphs of the human spirit.
Istanbul: Memories of a City by Orhan Pamuk
Read by John Lee, 9 hrs and 46 mins, Available on Amazon $13.99
Turkey’s greatest living novelist, Nobel Prize winner Orhan Pamuk, guides us through the monuments and lost paradises, dilapidated Ottoman villas, back streets, and waterways of Istanbul – the city of his birth and the home of his imagination.
Dave Gorman Vs The Rest of the World written and read by Dave Gorman
8 hrs and 45 mins, Available on Amazon $17.95
David Gorman asked 76,000 people online if they fancy playing a game. This is the story of him travelling around England, knocking on doors and playing whatever game the stranger chose. He played Monopoly, Scrabbly, Tikal, Smit, frisbee and darts. On the way, he learns what makes British people tick and meets everyone from casual gamers to hardcore gaming geeks.
Tales of a Shaman’s Apprentice written and read by Mark J. Plotkin
2 hrs and 46 mins, Available on Amazon $14.95
Author Mark Plotkin, chief ethnobotanist for Conservation International, has spent much of the past 15 years tracking the shamans of the northeast Amazon. Their knowledge of healing plants may hold the cure to some of today’s most devastating diseases.This book is a critically acclaimed account of his apprenticeship to these powerful wise men, a gripping journey into a wild and wonderful world seldom glimpsed by outsiders.
Neither Here Nor There: Travels in Europe written and read by Bill Bryson
5 hrs and 38 mins, Available on Amazon $9.95
In the 70’s Bill Bryson backpacked across Europe in search of adventure, beer, and women. Twenty years later, he retraced his steps on this insightful, funny pilgrimage from Scandanavia to Istanbul, sharing his stories in his frank and hilarious way.
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What are the best travel audiobooks that you have discovered? Comment below with any I have missed!