If you are not currently engaged in an overland trip, or you are but love it so much that when not driving you want to read about other peoples adventures, then we have put together a comprehensive list of some of the best books on the subject ever to be released.
1. First Overland by Tim Slessor
This book should be at the top of any travelers reading list, overlander or not. The riveting story of the 1955 trip from London to Singapore has become a travel classic, even garnering a foreword by Sir David Attenborough. If you only choose one overlanding novel to read, make it this one!
2. Travel the Planet Overland by Graham & Luisa Bell
Travel the Planet Overland was written to inspire others to explore this magnificent rock we all call home and the core message is simply that anyone sufficiently inspired can travel the planet overland! Graham and Luisa from A2A Overland take the readers hand and walk them through the long term world travelers reality, introducing the different types of overland travelers and the vehicles they prefer based on the fluidity of their cash flow. We then guide readers through the financial and emotional preparations for overland travel and provide the tools for overland travel success!
3. Drive Nacho Drive by Brad and Sheena Van Orden
“A Journey from the American dream to the end of the world”
This is one of our favorite overlanding novels, engagingly written, funny and honest, Drive Nacho Drive chronicles the journey of Brad, Sheena and Nacho as they drive on the roads of Central and South America aboard, their quirky and somewhat temperamental Volkswagen van.
Bonus Points; it is also now available as an audio download!
4. Strangers like Angels by Alec and Jan Forman
Strangers Like Angels chronicles the journeys of Alec and Jan Forman to far and distant lands as they embrace their pioneering spirit. Following adventures in Canada, Antarctica and the Sultanate of Oman they set off on the original gap year in the seventies. Travelling in their Land Rover, they use only a map and compass to navigate through the Sahara Desert and tropical rainforests in Africa, back to Europe and out to Asia via the Hindu Kush, and on to the Himalayas. They grapple with the realities of poverty and yet experience surprising hospitality and welcome from unlikely sources. In the confined space of their vehicle, Alec and Jan learn what it takes to support and sustain themselves and their relationship on an exciting and often harrowing journey. Exchange of news through airmail letters to and from England keeps them in touch with family matters. Beautiful photographs and illustrations with maps complement the text, taking the reader along on the journey with Alec and Jan. A light, entertaining read of a true story of adventures, travel and divine encounter, blended with winsome tales to delight the hear!
5. The Overlanders Handbook by Chris Scott
There is no way we could write a list of must-read books for overlanders without mentioning Chris Scott’s definitive guide. This book helped me to no end before I set out on my first overland trip, with thorough and well-researched sections on everything from vehicle choice to route selection, border crossings to bush repairs. For first-timers and seasoned overlanders alike, this is the guidebook for vehicle dependant adventure.
6. Left Beyond the Horizon by Christopher Many
200,000 kilometres in 3,000 days across five continents. Or in other words, just 66 kilometres a day on average – which is quite enough for a 30-year-old Land Rover.
Amidst the Scottish Highlands, battered by the elements, stands a neglected Land Rover. It does not seem to be the ideal vehicle for a trip around the world, but Christopher Many believes otherwise. He has the dream of embarking on a tour de force to the frozen wastelands of Siberia, North and South America, and across the continent of Africa – equipped with little more than a passport, credit card and full tank of petrol. His goal? ‘To explore strange new worlds and boldly go where no Land Rover has gone before.’
7. The Philosophy of Overland Travel by Lennie Hardingham
The Philosophy of Overland Travel: The Ultimate Preparation for Your Greatest Adventure is a tool to inspire and prepare you for any condition you will face on your adventure. Written with 30 years of great experiences, fun, hardship and trial an error of overlanding, have come down to this book and it’s philosophy and knowhow. It shares much more than just preparing your kit and equipment and explains that being driven, focused, disciplined, positive and passionate are not only the priority to your adventures success, but the best way to prepare to what lies ahead and to help you relish in every moment of each experience along the way.