Every time I go away I must carry at least one book with me and when on my backpacking trips, I try to theme my reading with some adventure travel books!
I’m a bit old school here so please forgive me all kindle readers, but as part of my disconnection from the comfort zone I try to use gadgets as little as possible.
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I have found myself many times googling for adventure travel book recommendations, so I thought of listing my favourite ones that I have expressly ordered to be read on my trips, some are real life stories some others novels or food for thought, without any particular order:
Run or Die: The Inspirational Memoir of the World’s Greatest Ultra-Runner whether you know or not who Kilian Jornet is, if you like to push yourself to the limit this is a great read written almost poethically.
Extremes: How Far Can You Go to Save a Life? not the common story book, Extremes is a highly entertaining medical book that shows how human audacity and creativity in tough times can push boundaries as never imagined before. Full of really interesting insights from a perspective most of us never see.
On Trails: an Exploration the title may seem confusing at first, it ended up being a very enjoyable theoretical research on what trails are, definitely one of those books that make me think everytime I’m out hiking.
Running with the mind of meditation this is not a training/guidance book, but it’s quite an interesting story that I relate to my days as a triathlete where the hardest bit to train is your mind more than the physical training.
A time to keep silence a short story, great travel writing, written from the perspective of living in secluded monasteries.
Running the Amazon proper adventure at its best! human spirit pushed to the limit in some of the most remote, dangerous and treacherous environments of our planet. If only I could have had the opportunity to be part of such an expedition!
In Patagonia I obviously took this book when I went backpacking in Patagonia, written with much details, legendary stories and history as well. It definitely helped me on that trip to absorb that part of the world with different eyes.
A Thousand Splendid Suns this book was quite emotional, telling stories that for a westerner may seem so remote and somehow oppresive, it has many courageous messages though.
The Places in Between one of my favourite travel books, proper adventure and well written, definitely one that puts you to travel while you read!
The Old Man and the Sea a classic Hemmingway, not much more to add!
This list will now keep growing with the books I swap at hostels during my Year of Adventures! these are the latest ones:
The Kon-Tiki Expedition a fantastic classic story which happens to be true. Thor Heyerdahl’s quest to prove his Polynesian migration theories pushed him to unexpected lengths!
City of the Beasts, Isabel Allende’s fantasy adventure in the Amazon forest was surely entertaining during my time backpacking in Taiwan!
Shantaram, one of my favourite books ever. Great choice if you happen to be backpacking in India.
A Legacy of Spies, not much else can be said about Le Carre’s books. This was one of those books I couldn’t keep my hands off, I even read it twice as I was in backpacking in Romblon island and the hostel didn’t have any books to swap there.
No Picnic on Mount Kenya, an incredible adventure story of a real jail break! only happens when mountaneering is on your DNA!
The Unbearable Lightness of Being, a classic by Milan Kundera. I couldn’t leave this book for 3 days, it’s one of those that makes you think while entertains!
Have you got any adventure travel books that you loved reading while out on your adventures? drop a comment below as I’d love to hear about it!