10+ Great Books to Inspire Young Travelers

10+ Great Books to Inspire Young Travelers

books to inspire young travelers pinI have to admit, I am an unabashed book nerd. Before I travel anywhere new, I always like to read a book set wherever I’m going. I think it helps to frame a new perspective. So, naturally, like all good parents, I try to “encourage” my daughter to follow the same path. Along the way, we have found a few great books that I think really help to inspire her to travel, too.

A World Atlas

world atlas book coverAfter about a week of owning this book, my then 2-year-old started asking me when we could go to South America. I think anything with pull out pictures helps to engage young kids, and I think it helps to expose her to diversity, too. I may be reaching there.

A Book About Airplanes

What kid doesn’t love airplanes, and what parent doesn’t fear that first long flight? These two books have gotten us through 2 6-hour+ flights.

  1. Richard Scarry’s A Day at the Airport: So many pictures, and it also has a sticker sheet.
  2. Airplane Flight! Again, anything with lift-the-flap or any other interaction is a winner for young kids. We read this 6 times with our then 13-month-old on a flight to Hawaii.

The Good Night Series

The Good Night, Our World series of board books is perfect for to inspire young travelers. Mostly there are books about places in North America (Los Angeles, Cape Cod, Nebraska, Alberta, etc.) but there is also one on Israel and other international destinations.

good night new york city book cover

This is Series

If you have never read any of Miroslav Sasek’s This is the World series, get thee to a library immediately. From London to San Francisco to Hong Kong to Greece, the eye-catching illustrations accompany informational text that’s easy for young readers.



Quick Ways to Learn “Thank You” in Other Languages

Try How Tiger Says Thank You. Tiger and her lizard friend fly to various countries and learn to say thank you in other languages. Part of the Little Traveler’s Library.

Books If you are Traveling to Specific Countries

  1. Norway: Try a traditional Norwegian folk tale with East O’ the Sun, West O’ the Moon. Besides an excellent lesson as with most folk tales, it has beautiful illustrations and may prep them better for trolls than Frozen.
  2. Paris: Who does not associate Paris with Madeline? Classics should be passed down to our kids, right?
  3. The UK: It’s hard to narrow it down here. You can’t miss Paddington, or the BabyLit series that makes classics like Pride and Prejudice and Secret Garden into board books. Certainly when kids get older, Harry Potter could inspire the most reluctant youth to get on a plane to England. So I say why limit your options?
  4. Germany: I think we all grow up on Grimm’s Fairy Tales. We have a copy in German (toned down a bit from the original blood-thirsty version).

Only the Beginning

Of course, there are hundreds of books set in Asia, Africa (Mama Panya’s Pancakes)…I could go one forever. What are your favorite books to inspire young travelers?

25 thoughts on “10+ Great Books to Inspire Young Travelers

  1. These look super cute! We read a lot of educational books but whenever I take my kids anywhere I tell them we are “going on an adventure”, whether big or small.

  2. Ooh, my niece and nephews are going on their first plane trip in July. I think I’ll get them the airplane book. Thanks for this great list!

  3. Great books! My toddler loves airplanes. She gets excited every time she hears one. We have several of the Madeline books.

  4. We love travel books in our house! We have a couple from Usborne – one is a “shine-the-light” book about airplanes and airports and the other is a “lift-the-flap” atlas book that gives LOTS of details about different places and cultures. I’m going to add a few of these you’ve listed to our bookshelf!

  5. This is fun! I’ve been looking for geography tie-ins for homeschooling my preschooler and will definitely be looking into a few of these books!

  6. These look like a great collection of books. When we were taking the children to America for the first time a few years back my brother in law and his wife gave my two a load of similar books and they loved them!

  7. Our boys love their atlas though so not quite get the concept of the world. But loving the other ideas x

  8. My boys love travelling and I have not brought them any travel books. You have recommended some really good books that I will check out. Great post

  9. I love reading with my 17 month old! There are some great books here that I’m going to check out for her. I love the Richard Scarry “A Day At The Airport” and the Airplane flap book. We are flying tomorrow morning to Florida and I wish I had read this before today so I could have purchased these titles for my daughter to enjoy on our flight! I will definitely add them to my Amazon shopping list 🙂

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