Monday, July 25, 2016

5 Books for Your Inner Traveler

Today, we're going to talk about books. Specifically books about travel and/or adventure. 

Have you ever read a book that inspired you to throw some stuff in a backpack and travel the world? I'm definitely more of a homebody, but I love experiencing new places from the comfort of my own home. So that's where my list of 5 Books for Your Inner Traveler comes in handy. 

Let's dive right in, shall we? 

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{Into the Wild by Jon Krakauer}
This book is about a young man named Christopher Johnson McCandless who graduated from college and then disposed of all of his belongings and ventured into the wilderness. He gave himself a new name and identity and hitchhiked to Alaska. His adventure only lasted 4 months (and sadly, did not end well), BUT I like the spirit of the story. It serves as a kind of reminder that we tend to put too much stock into material things instead of getting back to nature and just going where our heart tells us to. 

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{A Walk in the Woods: Rediscovering America on the Appalachian Trail by Bill Bryson}
This is one of my absolute favorite books. I re-read it periodically just because it's really that good (and I'm not someone who normally likes to re-read books). But Bill Bryson injects humor and interesting facts and anecdotes about his hike on the Appalachian Trail with his sidekick Stephen Katz. The first part of the book will have you laughing out loud, I guarantee it. This book always makes me want to get out there and hike with my family. But, bears. :) One of my favorite quotes from the book is: "Hunters will tell you that a moose is a wily and ferocious forest creature. Nonsense. A moose is a cow drawn by a three-year-old."

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{Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail by Cheryl Strayed}
I think this is one of those books that you either love or hate. For me, I loved it. It's one of the few books that I've read where I completely hated the main protagonist in the story. But I appreciated her raw journey. Cheryl lost her mother, and in her grief proceeds to make a series of really extremely bad life choices. And then, with no prior hiking experience, she decides to hike the Pacific Crest Trail on her own. The book follows her journey from self-destruction to self-discovery and awareness. It's also been made into a movie starring Reese Witherspoon. 

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{Into Thin Air: A Personal Account of the Mt. Everest Disaster by Jon Krakauer}
I know what you're thinking: Really, Mia, another Jon Krakauer book? Well, yes. Krakauer is an exceptional writer. He is so adept at drawing you into the story. This was a book that I could not put down! Krakauer excels at explaining subjects that his readers might not be too familiar with and has a way of putting things in layman's terms. The sheer effort it takes to hike Mt. Everest is mind-blowing to me. The guides, the gear, the physical strain - it's interesting to me that people will pay to hike a mountain of such extreme conditions. But I enjoyed reading the different accounts of the events from various perspectives and while it does not have a happy ending, it is definitely a story that will stick with you for a long time. 

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{Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert}
This is another one of those books that you either love or hate. I'm sure you can guess my opinion - I loved it. Again, it features an unlikable (to me) protagonist, but her journey from existential crisis to spiritual peace is one that I absolutely enjoyed. If you've ever wondered if you were on the right path, or doing the right thing, I think this book will resonate with you. Plus, the imagery of the countries she traveled to - Italy, India, and Indonesia - will have you online trying to book your plane tickets ASAP! 

So, there you have it. 5 books to awaken your inner traveler. Have you read any of these? Share your thoughts. Or if you have a favorite travel/adventure book not on this list, please tell me about it! 

*This post was written by me and first appeared as a guest post on Scatterbrain.*

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