Best Books To Inspire Travel In Teens And Tweens

Years ago, when we first started working with our financial planner - which sounds very fancy, but I assure you it’s not like that.

Our decision to work with a financial planner came about when we were living paycheck to paycheck, and Mark and I finally acknowledged that we are children when it comes to being financially responsible, because we like shiny stuff, and we needed a non-biased person - who’s also smart with money - to tell us what we should spend and what we should save.

In the beginning of our working relationship with him, we were tasked with writing out our family’s priorities so we could finagle a budget that would work for us.

One of our top priorities was travel.

We wanted - and still do - to be able to show our kids the world: to experience different cultures and food and celebrate people who are different from us.

 
Best Books To Inspire Travel In Teens And Tweens | Bring Mommy A Martini
 

To broaden their horizons and help round them out as humans.

We decided that, while having things is super fun, experiences and memories can never be taken away.

They’re the best kind of education.

Our family treasures travel above most everything else in the world, aside from friends, family, and Nestle Toll House Cookies, which - let’s be honest.

I’m sharing 11 books today to help your kids appreciate the importance of seeing the world outside their walls, and to inspire them to travel and explore.

These are the best books to encourage kids aged nine and upwards into the teen years to get out there and grab the world by the horns.

Image courtesy  Condé Nast Traveler

Image courtesy Condé Nast Traveler

1 - From the Mixed Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankenweiler, by E.L. Konigsburg

Conde Nast Traveler says: “Before there was Night at the Museum, there was From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler. This timeless book tells the story of two young siblings spending the night at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, exploring the details of this NYC landmark. Kids have been dreaming of overnight museum adventures ever since.”

Age: 9-13

Image courtesy AllisonTait.com

Image courtesy AllisonTait.com

2 - Mapmaker Chronicals, by A.L. TaiT

Author Allison Tait says: “When I sat down to write The Mapmaker Chronicles: Race to the end of the world, that sense of excitement, the joy of being ‘elsewhere’, came with me. The story was inspired by several conversations I had with my oldest son, now 10, one of which was about the earliest maps.

‘How did they map the world?’ he asked me.

‘Well, they had to go,’ I answered. ‘They had to get in their ships and sail off into the unknown, to find out what was there.’

Today, of course, we can ‘visit’ anywhere via the Internet, but the thrill of ‘being there’ – that’s something you can’t capture via a screen.

You have to go.”

Age: 9-14

Image courtesy Candlewick Press

Image courtesy Candlewick Press

3 - Maps, by Aleksandra Mizielinska and Daniel Mizielinska

Allison Tait of Y Travel Blog says of Maps: “Beautiful, hand-drawn detailed illustrations that make your mouth water and your feet itch.”

Age: 7-10


Image courtesy Harper Collins Publishers

Image courtesy Harper Collins Publishers

4 - Inside Out and Back Again, by Thannha Lai

Condé Nast Traveler says of Inside Out and Back Again: “This Newbery Honor book was inspired by author Thanhha Lai’s childhood experience of fleeing Vietnam after the fall of Saigon and moving to Alabama. The young protagonist not only gives a child’s-eye view of immigration, but also a realistic portrayal of the sights and thrills of Saigon.”

Age: 8-12

Image courtesy Sleeping Bear Press

Image courtesy Sleeping Bear Press

5 - Mercedes and the Chocolate Pilot, by Margot Theis Raven

If you know anything about me at all, you know that WWII is my most favorite era, and I’m super-intrigued by anything “true story” based in that time period. Mercedes and the Chocolate Pilot is one I love, even though everyone in my family has aged out of its reading level.

Condé Nast Traveler says: This is the true story of seven-year-old Mercedes, a girl living in West Berlin during the Airlift, and Lt. Gail S. Halvorsen, a pilot who would drop nourishment and supplies to the children below. The book’s youthful tone and evocative paintings help portray life in 1948 Germany.

Age: 6-10

Image courtesy Lonely Planet Publications

Image courtesy Lonely Planet Publications

6 - “Not-for-Parents” Travel Book by Lonely Planet

Allison Tait of Y Travel Blog says of this fun travel book: “As a child, it’s easy to think that the world is for grown-ups. This series shows that there are places for children even in the biggest cities.”

Age: 8-11

Image courtesy Random House

Image courtesy Random House

7 - The Magic Treehouse #41: Moonlight on the Magic Flute, by Mary Pope Osborne

Both of my boys were/are huge fans of the Magic Treehouse books, and I’d be a big, fat liar if I said I wasn’t also. I love these books so much because they teach bite-sized history lessons that are easy to understand and relate to.

Condé Nast Traveler says: “This installment of the Magic Tree House series takes us to Vienna, Austria, during the 18th century. Set against the backdrop of the famous Schönbrunn Palace, this book is packed to the gills with history, mystery, and magic.”

Age: 8-11


Image courtesy Lonely Planet Publications

Image courtesy Lonely Planet Publications

8 - Lonely Planet’s My Family Travel Map, North America Edition

I love the guides Lonely Planet puts out there, especially for the littles. This guide introduces kids to the U.S., Canada, Mexico, and the Caribbean, and includes a giant fold-out map. The flip side has fun facts to learn along the way, and serves as a keepsake record of memories made along the trip.

Age: 8-12

Image courtesy Lonely Planet Publications

Image courtesy Lonely Planet Publications

9 - Ancient Wonders - Then & Now, by Stuart Hill

Lonely Planet says: “Ancient Wonders - Then & Now introduces children to some of history's most famous civilisations and the amazing palaces, temples and buildings they created. In this interactive and fact-filled tour, kids will discover all about each man-made marvel, what it looks like today, and its influence on modern life.”

Age: 5-8 (a little young, but I love this book so much, I find great interest in its content and I’m much older than 8. Ahem.)

Image courtesy RickRiordan.com

Image courtesy RickRiordan.com

10- Travel Books by Rick Riordan

Kirsten Maxwell of Kids Are A Trip says: “My kids love all of the Rick Riordan books. From Percy Jackson to the Kane Chronicles to Magnus Chase, my kids have learned about Greek, Egyptian, and Norse Mythology as well as world history in a fun way. When we travel, they love connecting in real life with the things they have learned in these books. I highly recommend these series for boys and girls alike!”

Age: 9-14

Image courtesy of ABRAMS

Image courtesy of ABRAMS

11 - Diary of a Wimpy Kid - The Long Haul, by Jeff Kinney

Keryn Means of Walking on Travel says: The Diary of a Wimpy Kid The Long Haul by Jeff Kinney is a great book to read before, during or after a road trip with your kids. This popular book brings readers along for a ride as the Heffleys go off on a grand adventure that has many twists and turns, but turns out to be an adventure no one ever expected….”

And really… what kid doesn’t love a Diary of a Wimpy Kid book?

Age: 8-12

Did I miss any? Got any childhood or young chapter books you remember reading that made you want to explore? Tell me in the comments!

Best Books To Inspire Travel In Teens And Tweens | Bring Mommy A Martini
Best Books To Inspire Travel In Teens And Tweens | Bring Mommy A Martini