Books

Holiday Gift Guide 2020: 7 Books for the Armchair Traveller


Although it may not feel like it today, there will be a time when we will travel again. In the meantime, the travellers in your life may need books that will get them into the spirit of travel, if only from their armchair. Here are 7 books that would make a perfect gift for the armchair traveller.

150 Hot Spots in Canada, The Best Parks, Conversation Areas and Wild Places

Although not encouraged, the armchair traveller may be able to get off the couch and visit a few of the places found within 150 Hot Spots in Canada or 100 Nature Hot Spots in Ontario, The Best Parks, Conservation Areas and Wild Places. There are are a number of books in this series including 110 Nature Hot Spots in Manitoba and Saskatchewan The Best Parks, Conservation Areas and Wild Places, and 150 Nature Hot Spots in California: The Best Parks, Conservation Areas and Wild Places.

Each book offers several pages about the location the authors suggest you need to see such as Kakabeka Falls Province Park in Ontario or Gwaii Haanas in British Columbia. Each location offers stunning pictures, information about the destination including what makes it a hot spot, when it’s open, what you can do when you get there and more.

There are more than 500 locations armchair travellers may be able to add to their lists.

Hot Spot books are from Firefly Books.

A Paddlers Guide to Algonquin Park

A good thing about Algonquin Park is there is about 4,741 square miles to explore, 2,400 lakes to check out and 1,200 kilometres of streams and rivers to paddle down – if the armchair traveller would like more solitude.

Travellers can also map out next year’s canoeing routes with this book by Kevin Callan, who offers interesting stories of the routes he has travelled over the years, beautiful pictures and maps and information needed to go on your own Algonquin adventure – this year or next. Information includes the time it takes to complete a route, portage information and distance and difficulty.

A Paddlers Guide to Algonquin Park is from Firefly Books.

Braver Than You Think, Around the World on the Trip of My (Mother’s) Lifetime

Braver Than You Think is part memoir part travelogue as the armchair travel gets to explore the world through author Maggie Downs’ book. Downs, recently married, leaves her job to backpacking through 17 countries that her mom dreamed of going before she was diagnosed with young-onset Alzheimer’s disease.

Downs doesn’t sugarcoat her experiences and includes the bad parts, which made for an authentic read . Down’s had a lot of experiences such as hiking the Inca Trail and volunteering at a monkey sanctuary that the armchair travel may want to put on his own list – or not.

Braver Than You Think, Around the World on the Trip of My (Mother’s) Lifetime is from PGC Books.

DK Smithsonian Behind the Scenes at the Museum, Your All-Access Guide to the World’s Most Amazing Museums

In this beautiful book from DK, travellers can learn about various types of museums and the people responsible for bringing collections to the general public including taxidermists and conservators, who clean the collections in order to preserve them for future generations. The book also provides information on the various artifacts found in a museum – how the item was found and what it took to bring the item to be on display. For example, the notebooks of Marie Curie, who discovered radioactive elements, are still contaminated and staff who want to examine notebooks have to sign a document to say they understand the risk and wear protective clothing.

There is lots of information on each subject in the book with pictures to help tell the story. It’s one of those books, armchair travellers can spend as much or as little time as they like reading through the information provided. The book also lists a variety of museums around the world.

Smithsonian Behind the Scenes at the Museum is from DK books.

DK Smithsonian Journey, An Illustrated History of Travel

Armchair travellers can learn about the history of travel while waiting for their opportunity to explore the world again.

In this big DK Smithsonian book, armchair travellers learn about humans first travels in the Ancient World and journey into today’s time. Along the way, the armchair traveller learns about the Age of Discovery, the Age of Steam and Taking Flight.

There is lots of information within each chapter with illustrations, photographs, maps and more as well as interesting people from the time. The book also provides information about some of the world’s most famous explorers.

Journey, An Illustrated History of Travel is from DK Smithsonian.

DK Smithsonian’s Natural Wonders of the World

Armchair travellers may be adding a number of other places to travel once they can do so thanks to Smithsonian’s Natural Wonders of the World.

With stunning photographs of places, creatures and plants, everything about this book is beautiful and awe-inspiring. This book will confirm to armchair travellers there is still so much to see.

Natural Wonders of the World is from DK.

Strange Sea Creatures

It might be that Strange Sea Creatures by Erich Hoyt may keep the armchair traveller at the surface of the water, rather than diving down.

The photos in this book are fascinating and a tad bit terrifying, even though most of the creatures could easily fit in your hand and some are so small you wouldn’t actually see them without a microscope, which actually be even more creepy.

Each creature has a page dedicated to them. The creature is on a black background with a paragraph of information written about it including its size, where it was photographed (location and water depth) and some interesting information about it. It’s probably good the average diver can’t travel 2,000 to 2,500 feet below sea level because the Black Dragonfish is truly terrifying looking with its milk eyes, giant teeth and cheek patch organs that glow in the pitch black waters. The fact it wiggles like an eel through the darkness doesn’t help either.

Strange Sea Creatures is from Firefly Books.

A copy of these books were provided by DK books, Firefly Books PGC Books for an honest review. The opinions are my own.

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