Travel Writing Books

  • WKTH
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    An explorer and writer that has led expeditions on five continents, this inspirational book follows Levison Wood as he attempts to walk the entire length of the Himalayas.

    Tying in with a hit Channel 4 show, this is a powerful and enigmatic tale of survival and endurance. Levison reveals how he managed to form strong bonds with local guides, porters, mountain men, soldiers, farmers, smugglers and shepherds as he embarked on his quest.

    By travelling on foot and following the same footpaths as the locals, Levison uncovers hidden stories that reveal the history of the Himalayas and stretch back over two millennia of exploration.
  • Stanfords Travel Classics Collection - 3 Books - Collection - 9781909612860
    SFTC
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    • Just £1.66 per book
    With books from Captain Joshua Slocum, Robert Louis Stevenson and Edith Wharton, this collection features some of the finest historical travel writing of all time.

    Edith Wharton, the author of The Age of Innocence, travelled to Morocco in the final days of the First World War. A time before guidebooks, she recorded her encounters with the country's people, traditions and ceremonies and described the mosques, palaces and ruins she visited in In Morocco. Very observant and brimming with passion, her work will transport you to another era.

    Captain Joshua Slocum sailed the world for over 35 years and embarked on the first solo circumnavigation of the globe. For more than three years, he battled stormy seas, attacks from raiders and loneliness and in Sailing Alone Around the World, he documented it all. Travels with a Donkey in Cevennes is Robert Louis Stevenson's humorous and heart-warming memoirs of a walking trip (with a donley named Modestine) he took in his early 20s.

    This is an eye-opening collection for people interested in travel, history and classic authors.
  • IOTM
    • £3.99
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    Taxi! This hardback book tells the astonishing story of three mates, the taxi they drunkenly purchased and a 43,000 mile-round trip of global misadventure.

    Like many, Paul, Johno and Leigh had plans to travel the world. Little did they know that when they bought themselves a London cab, they'd end up embarking on a journey that took them off the beaten track to some of the most fascinating, dangerous and deadly places on Earth.

    From altercations with the Iranian Secret Police to a terrifying experience with the Taliban, the trio had all kinds of experiences on their fantastic, thrilling and dangerous journey. They even managed to break two World Records along the way!

    With its crazy premise and some colourful language, this highly entertaining and quirky memoir will delight fans of Dave Gorman and Danny Wallace.
  • TRLG
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    Campaigner, publisher and wanderer Alastair Sawday has spent his life travelling all around the world and in this book he celebrates the joys of slow travel. His musings will inspire you to take a breath and embrace all the beauty that surrounds you on your next trip away.

    This travelogue finds Alastair looking back on his own travels and recalling stories from those who have travelled to provide ruminations and reflections about people, places and ideas. He contemplates how much slow journeying adds to the appeal of France profonde, the darker side of Sicily and even the woodland, flora, fauna, views and silence of rural Britain.

    This is the perfect book for armchair travellers who haven't climbed mountains, swam in rivers and don't really change, but are eager to understand our world and its infinite variety of joys.
  • OUNT
    • £4.99
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    A popular adventurer and wildlife presenter with all ages, Steve Backshall has been climbing since his teens and has a genuine love for the mountains.

    This book is peppered with anecdotes of his climbs and is a celebration of the power of natural landscapes and how they can make us feel very small but also very alive. Despite breaking his back while climbing in 2008, Steve was not put off and managed to seek a variety of new challenges.

    He looks back at some of his greatest achievements while climbing including the first ascent of Mount Kuli in the Bornean rainforest, his trek up K2 in Karakorum and describes the terror of a travelling companion's fall into a crevasse while trailing a snow leopard.

    Exciting, inspiring and sure to make you feel on top of the world, this is a stunning autobiography about Steve's incredible achievements.
  • AAAKE
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    It's 3 a.m. and Elizabeth Gilbert is sobbing on the bathroom floor. She's in her thirties, she has a husband, a house, they're trying for a baby - and she doesn't want any of it. A bitter divorce and a turbulent love affair later, she emerges battered and bewildered and realises it is time to pursue her own journey in search of three things she has been missing: pleasure, devotion and balance. So she travels to Rome, where she learns Italian from handsome, brown-eyed identical twins and gains twenty-five pounds, an ashram in India, where she finds that enlightenment entails getting up in the middle of the night to scrub the temple floor, and Bali where a toothless medicine man of indeterminate age offers her a new path to peace: simply sit still and smile. And slowly happiness begins to creep up on her.

  • AGRFB
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    The "Old Ways" is the stunning new book by acclaimed nature writer Robert Macfarlane. Shortlisted for the Samuel Johnson prize 2012. Following the tracks, holloways, drove-roads and sea paths that form part of a vast ancient network of routes criss-crossing the British Isles and beyond, Robert Macfarlane discovers a lost world - a landscape of the feet and the mind, of pilgrimage and ritual, of stories and ghosts; above all of the places and journeys which inspire and inhabit our imaginations. "Really do love it. He has a rare physical intelligence and affords total immersion in place, elements and the passage of time: wonderful". (Antony Gormley). "A marvellous marriage of scholarship, imagination and evocation of place. I always feel exhilarated after reading Macfarlane". (Penelope Lively). "Macfarlane immerses himself in regions we may have thought familiar, resurrecting them newly potent and sometimes beautifully strange. In a moving achievement, he returns our heritage to us". (Colin Thubron). "Every Robert MacFarlane book offers beautiful writing, bold journeys...With its global reach and mysterious Sebaldian structure, this is MacFarlane's most important book yet". (David Rothenberg, author of "Survival of the Beautiful" and "Thousand Mile Song"). "Luminous, possessing a seemingly paradoxical combination of the dream-like and the hyper-vigilant, "The Old Ways" is, as with all of Macfarlane's work, a magnificent read. Each sentence can carry astonishing discovery". (Rick Bass, US novelist and nature writer). ""The Old Ways" confirms Robert Macfarlane's reputation as one of the most eloquent and observant of contemporary writers about nature". ("Scotland on Sunday"). "Sublime writing ...sets the imagination tingling...Macfarlane's way of writing [is] free, exploratory, rambling and haphazard but resourceful, individual, following his own whims, and laying an irresistible trail for readers to follow". ("Sunday Times"). "Macfarlane relishes wild, as well as old, places. He writes about both beautifully...I love to read Macfarlane". (John Sutherland, "Financial Times"). "Read this and it will be impossible to take an unremarkable walk again". ("Metro"). Robert Macfarlane won the Guardian First Book Award, the Somerset Maugham Award, and the Sunday Time Young Writer of the Year Award for his first book, "Mountains of the Mind (2003)". His second, "The Wild Places (2007)", was similarly celebrated, winning three prizes and being shortlisted for six more. Both books were adapted for television by the BBC. He is a Fellow of Emmanuel College, Cambridge.
  • AMXOK
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    This is a delightful book about Italy's unexpected history, told through its citrus fruits. The story of citrus runs through the history of Italy like a golden thread, and by combining travel writing with history, recipes, horticulture and art, Helena Attlee takes the reader on a unique and rich journey through Italy's cultural, moral, culinary and political past. "4 stars. Attlee, who knows and loves Italy and the Italians, takes the reader through the country's scented gardens with her sharp descriptions, pertinent stories and quotes and intriguing recipes. I was there with her". (Anna del Conte, Sunday Telegraph). "Fascinating ...A distinguished garden writer, Attlee fell under the spell of citrus over ten years ago and the book, like the eleventh labour of Hercules to steal the golden fruit of the Hesperides, is the result. She writes with great lucidity, charm and gentle humour, and wears her considerable learning lightly ...Helena Attlee's elegant, absorbing prose and sure-footed ability to combine the academic with the anecdotal, make The Land Where Lemons Grow a welcome addition to the library of citrologists and Italophiles alike". (The Times Literary Supplement). "A paradise of citrus is how I always think of Italy too: a place where ice-cold limoncello is sipped from tiny glasses on piazzas, and everything from ricotta cake to osso bucco is enlivened with zest. What a joy, therefore, to read Helena Attlee's The Land Where Lemons Grow, which tells the story of Italy through its citrus fruit". (Bee Wilson, Telegraph). Helena Attlee is the author of four books about Italian gardens, and others on the cultural history of gardens around the world. Helena is a Fellow of the Royal Literary Fund and has worked in Italy for nearly 30 years.
  • AOLAC
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    In 1995, before leaving his much-loved home in North Yorkshire to move back to the States for a few years with his family, Bill Bryson insisted on taking one last trip around Britain, a sort of valedictory tour of the green and kindly island that had so long been his home. His aim was to take stock of the nation's public face and private parts (as it were), and to analyse what precisely it was he loved so much about a country that had produced Marmite; a military hero whose dying wish was to be kissed by a fellow named Hardy; place names like Farleigh Wallop, Titsey and Shellow Bowells; people who said 'Mustn't grumble', and 'Ooh lovely' at the sight of a cup of tea and a plate of biscuits; and Gardeners' Question Time. Notes from a Small Island was a huge number-one bestseller when it was first published, and has become the nation's most loved book about Britain, going on to sell over two million copies.
  • AQXNF
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    The English Channel is the busiest waterway in the world. Ferries steam back and forth, trains thunder through the tunnel. The narrow sea has been crucial to our development and prosperity. It helps define our notion of Englishness, as an island people, a nation of seafarers. It is also our nearest, dearest playground where people have sought sun, sin and bracing breezes. Tom Fort takes us on a fascinating, discursive journey from east to west, to find out what this stretch of water means to us and what is so special about the English seaside, that edge between land and seawater. He dips his toe into Sandgate's waters, takes the air in Hastings and Bexhill, chews whelks in Brighton, builds a sandcastle in Sandbanks, sunbathes in sunny Sidmouth, catches prawns off the slipway at Salcombe and hunts a shark off Looe. Stories of smugglers and shipwreck robbers, of beachcombers and samphire gatherers, gold diggers and fossil hunters abound.
  • AREON
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    This is Sunday Times Top Ten Bestseller. Acclaimed and beloved travel writer Paul Theroux turns his attention to his own country - America - for the first time in Deep South. For the past fifty years, Paul Theroux has travelled to the far corners of the earth - to China, India, Africa, the Pacific Islands, South America, Russia, and elsewhere - and brought them to life in his cool, exacting prose. In Deep South he turns his gaze to a region much closer to his home. Travelling through North and South Carolina, Georgia, Tennessee, Mississippi, Alabama and Arkansas, Paul Theroux writes of the stunning landscapes he discovers - the deserts, the mountains, the Mississippi - and above all, the lives of the people he meets. The South is a place of contradictions. There is the warm, open spirit of the soul food cafes, found in every town, no matter how small. There is the ruined grandeur of numberless ghostly towns, long abandoned by the industries that built them. There are the state gun shows and the close-knit, subtly forlorn tribe of people who attend and run them. Deep in the heart of his native country, Theroux discovers a land more profoundly foreign than anything he has previously experienced.
  • ASMGS
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    Factory, mine and mill. Industry, toil and grime. Its manufacturing roots mean we still see the North of England as a hardworking place. But, more than possibly anywhere else, the North has always known how to get dressed up, take itself out on the town and have a good time. After all, working and playing hard is its specialty, and Stuart Maconie is in search of what, exactly, this entails what it tells us about the North today. Following tip offs and rumour, Stuart takes trip to forgotten corners and locals' haunts. From the tapas bars of Halifax to the caravan parks of Berwick Upon Tweed, from a Westhoughton bowling green to Manchester's curry mile, via dog tracks and art galleries, dance floors and high fells, Stuart compares the new and old North, with some surprising results. The Pie at Night could be seen as a companion to the bestselling Pies and Prejudice, but it is not a sequel. After all, this is a new decade and the North is changing faster than ever. This is a revealing and digressive journey and a State of the North address, delivered from barstool, terrace, dress circle and hillside.
  • ASMOM
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    Dan Boothby had been drifting for more than twenty years, without the pontoons of family, friends or a steady occupation. He was looking for but never finding the perfect place to land. Finally, unexpectedly, an opportunity presented itself. After a lifelong obsession with Gavin Maxwell's Ring of Bright Water trilogy, Boothby was given the chance to move to Maxwell's former home, a tiny island on the western seaboard of the Highlands of Scotland. Island of Dreams is about Boothby's time living there, and about the natural and human history that surrounded him; it's about the people he meets and the stories they tell, and about his engagement with this remote landscape, including the otters that inhabit it. Interspersed with Boothby's own story is a quest to better understand the mysterious Gavin Maxwell. Beautifully written and frequently leavened with a dry wit, Island of Dreams is a charming celebration of the particularities of place.
  • ASMPF
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    Iain Sinclair explores modern London through a day's hike around the London Overground route. The completion of the full circle of London Overground provides Iain Sinclair with a new path to walk the shifting territory of the capital. With thirty-three stations and thirty-five miles to tramp - and inevitable and unforeseen detours and false steps - he embarks on a marathon circumnavigation at street level, tracking the necklace of garages, fish farms, bakeries, convenience cafes, cycle repair shops and Minder lock-ups which enclose inner London. "He is incapable of writing a dull paragraph." (Scotland on Sunday). "Sinclair breathes wondrous life into monstrous man-made landscapes." (Times Literary Supplement). "If you are drawn to English that doesn't just sing, but sings the blues and does scat and rocks the joint, try Sinclair. His sentences deliver a rush like no one else's." (Washington Post).
  • AAAHP
    (4)
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    For the Seventies child, summer holidays didn't mean the joy of CentreParcs or the sophistication of a Tuscan villa. They meant being crammed into a car with Grandma and heading to the coast. With just a tent for a home and a bucket for the necessities, we would set off on new adventures each year stoically resolving to enjoy ourselves. For Emma Kennedy, and her mum and dad, disaster always came along for the ride no matter where they went. Whether it was being swept away by a force ten gale on the Welsh coast or suffering copious amounts of food poisoning on a brave trip to the south of France, family holidays always left them battered and bruised. But they never gave up. Emma's memoir, "The Tent, The Bucket and Me", is a painfully funny reminder of just what it was like to spend your summer holidays cold, damp but with sand between your toes.
  • AEEFW
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    Bear Grylls is a man who has always sought the ultimate in adventure. Growing up on the Isle of Wight, he was taught by his father to sail and climb at an early age. As a teenager he found identity and purpose through both mountaineering and martial arts, which led the young adventurer to the foothills of the mighty Himalaya and a grandmaster's karate training camp in Japan. On returning home, he embarked upon the notoriously gruelling selection course for the British Special Forces to join 21 SAS - a journey that was to push him to the very limits of physical and mental endurance. Then, in a horrific free-fall parachuting accident, Bear broke his back in three places. It was touch and go whether he would ever walk again. However, only eighteen months later Bear became one of the youngest ever climbers to scale Everest, aged only twenty-three. But this was just the beginning of his many extraordinary adventures...Known and admired by millions, Bear Grylls has survived where few would dare to go. Now, for the first time, Bear tells the story of his action-packed life. Gripping, moving and wildly exhilarating, "Mud, Sweat and Tears" is a must-read for adrenalin junkies and armchair adventurers alike.
  • AMIXO
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    The Danes are the happiest people in the world, and pay the highest taxes. 'Neutral' Sweden is one of the biggest arms manufacturers in the world. Finns have the largest per capita gun ownership after the US and Yemen. 54 per cent of Icelanders believe in elves. Norway is the richest country on earth. 5 per cent of Danish men have had sex with an animal. Michael Booth has lived among the Scandinavians, on and off, for over ten years, perplexed by their many strange paradoxes and character traits and equally bemused by the unquestioning enthusiasm for all things Nordic that has engulfed the rest of the world. He leaves his adopted home of Denmark and embarks on a journey through all five of the Nordic countries to discover who these curious tribes are, the secrets of their success and, most intriguing of all, what they think of each other. Along the way a more nuanced, often darker picture emerges of a region plagued by taboos, characterised by suffocating parochialism and populated by extremists of various shades.
  • AADDZ
    • £10.89
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    Paul Theroux sets off for Cape Town from Cairo - the hard way. Traveling across bush and desert, down rivers and across lakes, and through country after country, Theroux visits some of the most beautiful landscapes on earth, and some of the most dangerous. It is a journey of discovery and of rediscovery - of the unknown and the unexpected, but also of people and places he knew as a young and optimistic teacher forty years before. Safari in Swahili simply means 'journey', and this is the ultimate safari. It is Theroux in his element - a trip where chance encounter is everything, where departure and arrival times are an irrelevance, and where contentment can be found balancing on the top of a truck in the middle of nowhere.
  • APKAU
    • £19.79
    • RRP £20.00
    Twenty years ago, Bill Bryson went on a trip around Britain to celebrate the green and kindly island that had become his adopted country. The hilarious book that resulted, Notes from a Small Island, was taken to the nation's heart and became the bestselling travel book ever, and was also voted in a BBC poll the book that best represents Britain. Now, to mark the twentieth anniversary of that modern classic, Bryson makes a brand-new journey round Britain to see what has changed. Following (but not too closely) a route he dubs the Bryson Line, from Bognor Regis to Cape Wrath, by way of places that many people never get to at all, Bryson sets out to rediscover the wondrously beautiful, magnificently eccentric, endearingly unique country that he thought he knew but doesn't altogether recognize any more. Yet, despite Britain's occasional failings and more or less eternal bewilderments, Bill Bryson is still pleased to call our rainy island home. And not just because of the cream teas, a noble history, and an extra day off at Christmas. Once again, with his matchless homing instinct for the funniest and quirkiest, his unerring eye for the idiotic, the endearing, the ridiculous and the scandalous, Bryson gives us an acute and perceptive insight into all that is best and worst about Britain today.
  • ARGWD
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    Waking in the middle of the night whilst on holiday, Tony Hawks declares an epiphany to his barely conscious partner Fran. Fed up of living in a city where the only contact with his neighbours in three years was a dispute over a boundary fence, his mind has been made up and it's time for a change...of postcode. At the age of 53, Tony is finally ready to renounce his London lifestyle and head for the countryside, and to his enormous surprise, Fran agrees. Once Upon a Time in the West...Country tells the story of how a series of events lead Tony and Fran to uproot their city lives for a rural alternative in deepest Devon. Full of Tony's trademark mixture of humour, hope, adventure and absurdity, this book will chart their journey as they adapt from the relative ease of city life to the vagaries of a village community. But between organic gardening courses, attending village meetings and the impending birth of his first child, Tony still has time for one last adventure, cycling coast to coast with a mini pig called Titch. Full of eclectic characters - including the best neighbour in the world - Once Upon a Time in the West...Country is the heartwarming and hilarious tale of Tony Hawks' new life in the country.
  • ASHOQ
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    Experience the world by train Why do people love trains so much? Tom Chesshyre is on a mission to find the answer by experiencing the world through train travel - on both epic and everyday rail routes, aboard every type of ride, from steam locomotives to bullet trains, meeting a cast of memorable characters who share a passion for train travel. Join him on the rails and off the beaten track as he embarks on an exhilarating whistle-stop tour around the globe, from Sri Lanka to Iran via Crewe, Inverness, the Australian outback and beyond.
  • ASMNO
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    Simon Ingram takes us high into Britain's most forbidding and astonishing wild places through all the seasons of the year - from the first blush of spring to the darkest bite of the mountain winter. In the late 18th century, mountains shifted from being universally reviled to becoming the most inspiring things on earth. Simply put, the monsters became muses - and an entire artistic movement was born. This movement became a love affair, the love affair became an obsession, and gradually but surely, obsession became lifestyle as mountains became stitched into the fabric of the British cultural tapestry. In his compelling new book, Simon Ingram explores how mountains became such a preoccupation for the modern western imagination, weaving his own adventures into a powerful narrative which provides a kind of experiential hit list for people who don't have the time nor the will to climb a thousand mountains. For some of these mountains, the most amazing thing about them might be the journey they've taken to get here. Others, the tales of science, endeavour and art that have played out on their slopes. The mythology they're drenched in. The history they've seen. The genius they've inspired. The danger that draws people to them. The life that clusters around them, human and otherwise. The extreme weather they conjure. The adventure they fuel. The way that some raise the hairs on the back of your neck, and trigger powerful, strange emotions. And moreover, what they're like to be amidst, under, on - just what that indefinable quality is that the British mountains wield which takes possession of you so powerfully, and never goes away. From Beinn Dearg to Ben Nevis, Ingram takes us on a journey spanning sixteen of Britain's most evocative mountainous landscapes, and what they mean to us today.
  • ASOBV
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    Twenty years ago, Bill Bryson went on a trip around Britain to celebrate the green and kindly island that had become his adopted country. The hilarious book that resulted, Notes from a Small Island, was taken to the nation's heart and became the bestselling travel book ever, and was also voted in a BBC poll the book that best represents Britain. Now, to mark the twentieth anniversary of that modern classic, Bryson makes a brand-new journey round Britain to see what has changed. Following (but not too closely) a route he dubs the Bryson Line, from Bognor Regis to Cape Wrath, by way of places that many people never get to at all, Bryson sets out to rediscover the wondrously beautiful, magnificently eccentric, endearingly unique country that he thought he knew but doesn't altogether recognize any more. Yet, despite Britain's occasional failings and more or less eternal bewilderments, Bill Bryson is still pleased to call our rainy island home. And not just because of the cream teas, a noble history, and an extra day off at Christmas. Once again, with his matchless homing instinct for the funniest and quirkiest, his unerring eye for the idiotic, the endearing, the ridiculous and the scandalous, Bryson gives us an acute and perceptive insight into all that is best and worst about Britain today.
  • ASOTT
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    Peter, Matthew, Thomas, John: Who were these men and what was their relationship to Jesus? Tom Bissell gives us rich and deeply informed answers to those ancient questions. Written with warmth, humour, and a rare acumen, Apostle is a brilliant and exhaustive synthesis of travel writing, centuries of biblical history, and a deep lifelong relationship with Christianity. Bissell explores not just who these renowned and pious men were (and weren't), but how their identities have taken shape over two millennia. Bissell, in his search for this elusive set of truths, has traveled the world, visiting holy sites from Rome and Jerusalem to Turkey, India, and Kyrgyzstan, and he captures vividly the rich diversity of Christianity's global reach. Apostle is an unusual, erudite, and hilarious book, an intoxicating combination of religious, intellectual, and personal adventure.