7 quirky travel ebooks to take you on a great adventure

We can’t browse our favourite bookshops right now, but we can pick up an e-reader and escape into an exhilarating, far-flung, active adventure. Here are just a few suggestions to get you started…

5 mins

1. The Wrong Way Home: London to Sydney The Hard Way by Peter Moore

Vagabond Editions 

In 1994, Wanderlust’s Associate Web Editor (and resident Aussie) Peter Moore set himself a remarkable travel challenge: London to Sydney for just AUD$5,000. The catch? He wasn’t allowed to fly. At all.

Travelling overland through 25 countries, Peter experienced a hippie adventure like no other, and then some: the world's most expensive disco in Albania, the opium fields of Laos, student riots in Jakarta, an all-night beach rave on a small island in Thailand.

The tagline ‘funny, irreverent and acutely observed’ is bang on the money. Expect a lot of dry wit. A must-read for adventure seekers.

Check prices on Amazon

2. A Time of Birds by Helen Moat 


You’ve likely read Helen’s guides to the UK’s greatest walks on Wanderlust.co.uk. In her new book, she’s hitting the bike paths of Europe instead.

Cycling across the continent with her teenage son in tow, Helen pedals everywhere from the Rhine and Danube to Bulgaria and Turkey.

With birds singing and Europe’s glistening waterways as the backdrop, Helen must discover if she’s pedalling forward or away from the past, and must confront a long-held secret while on the road. 

Buy it here

3. Gears for Queers by Abigail Melton & Lilith Cooper 

Sandstone Press

Amsterdam to Spain doesn’t seem too far – until you decide to make the journey on an old bike you’ve just about dusted off.

But new-to-two-wheels Abi and Lili set aside the old stereotypes for cyclists and put their relationship to the test on this funny journey through Europe’s fields, forests and snow-dusted Alpine peaks.

Check prices on Amazon

4. Outpost: A Journey to the Wild Ends of the Earth by Dan Richards 

Canongate Books

What is it about the wilderness that enthrals us? Dan Richards embarks on a journey across the most secluded, peaceful and untamed parts of the planet to find out.

You’ll be taken all over the world – from shrines in Japan to ghost towns in Svalbard, Norway. Expect a stop in the Cairngorms, Scotland, Utah in the United States, and a visit to Iceland’s Houses of Joy.

The book also really shines a light on the artists, writers and musicians of the world, and why they’re so drawn to these remote outposts. 

Check prices on Amazon

5. Sovietistan by Erika Fatland 


The early 90s saw Central Asia’s Soviet states – Turkmenistan, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan – each become independent, only to then seemingly fall off the travel radar.

Norwegian journalist Erika Fatland passes though the marbled metropolises and sparsely peopled steppe to find darkening clouds hovering over those promised freedoms, if they ever arrived at all. 

Together, her thoughtful local encounters and measured, meticulous reporting creates a troubled portrait of an epic, untamed landscape.

Check prices on Amazon

6. Wild Coast: Travels on South America's Untamed Edge by John Gimlette 

Profile Books

Now seems the perfect time to revisit this 2011 gem on your Kindle or e-reader.

Travel writer John sets off along the Guianan coast, exploring Guyana, French Guiana and Suriname’s dense jungles, history – and colourful, often complicated characters.

Expect the book to read like a vivid journey through these three, truly off-the-beaten-track countries, with plenty of history lessons for those keen to deep dive into South America’s past.

Check prices on Amazon

7. The Railway To Heaven by Matthew Woodward

Lanna Hall

In this immersive, in-depth travelogue, rail adventurer Matthew Woodward tackles the longest and highest rail journey in the world – London to Tibet.

Somehow, he manages to take on all 20,000km of the Europe to Asia journey completely solo, reflecting on people, places and cultures along the way - via the Trans-Manchurian from Siberia to Beijing, and the Qinghai to Tibet railway across the Tibetan Plateau to Lhasa.

Naturally, it’s a must read for train travel enthusiasts, anyone gearing up to plan a true once-in-a-lifetime bucket list trip, and those with a curiosity for what modern day Tibet is like.

Check prices on Amazon

Related Articles