Books are the most reliable way to travel: you don’t even have to leave your chair. Since humanity’s earliest recorded epics, travel has been central to the stories we tell each other, and why they are important to us.
Most of us at least know the famous tales of Gilgamesh’s journey to Mount Mashu circa 2100 BCE, or Odysseus’s long and winding road home to Ithaca around 800 BCE. Perhaps you've read Don Quixote’s perambulations in medieval Spain, or followed Anne Elliot’s fateful trip to Bath in 1814. Then there's Elena Greco’s tooth-and-nail struggle to leave the Neapolitan slums of her birth in 20th-century Italy.
Whatever tales you love, whatever characters you've come to know—when they travel, we go with them.
Likewise, when we travel, our books go with us. Whether you are looking for a useful travel guide, a novel to inspire your next trip, or a memoir illuminating a real-life journey, Travel + Leisure editors are armed with the perfect books (and book-related travel ideas) for any and all readers.
Best Books for Traveling
At any given time, the best book out there is the book that best suits you. You may want to dig into a copy of War and Peace on your flight to Moscow (it doubles nicely as a head pillow), or speed through a fast-paced mystery on the beach, or take a trip from the comfort of your own home by dipping into classics of travel writing such as Rebecca West’s Black Lamb and Gray Falcon (about former Yugoslavia right before World War II), or Jamaica Kincaid’s A Small Place, which contemplates the effects of tourism on the island of Antigua, where she was born. Our travel editors are always looking for the next best long-haul read, or travel-inspired page turner.
Good Reads for Traveling Readers
Travel + Leisure writers (themselves big readers) also keep an eye out for the best libraries, book stores, and book-themed destinations around the world. From the Harry Potter Warner Bros. studios in London to the Buenos Aires theater-turned-bookshop (El Ateneo Grand Splendid) to a Little House on the Prairie road trip, we’ve got trip ideas for every stripe of bookworm.