The saying goes, “Travel is the only thing you can buy that makes you richer.” And boy, do we agree! There’s nothing quite like discovering a new place. It’s got its own unique sights and smells. The people talk differently, they dress differently, they may even greet each other differently. And you just stand there, taking it all in, committing all the “new” to memory…and maybe talking a selfie or two. But with the world facing the repercussions of a devasting pandemic, travel is simply not an option right now. This might mean that your long-awaited vacation has to be postponed, or that trip you were dreaming of taking is getting pushed to a much later date. Not only are travelers feeling this disappointment, but those countries whose economies rely heavily on tourism are suffering greatly. And while we don’t have a solution for the current state of affairs, we’ve come up with a plan to satisfy your adventuring spirit and bring exposure to a vast array of different countries and cultures. So until that time when we can hop on a plane or jump in the car and become globe trotters once again, we’ve put together a list of some incredible travel podcasts to whisk you around the world without ever leaving your house.
1. Travel with Rick Steves
American travel writer, guidebook author, television personality and now podcast presenter, Rick Steves is a leading name when it comes to European travel. He has a unique outlook on travel with his particular philosophy being one that focuses on discovering lesser-known destinations or less-touristed areas within those highly-popular choices travelers usually flock to. His podcast, Travel with Rick Steves, is based on this travel philosophy and so it is a fantastic way to learn more about unique destinations as well as giving us fresh insight into those well-known and loved holiday spots. The episodes include a wide variety of guests from the day’s destination, from tour guides to travel experts and enthusiasts, and together, you’ll learn about different cultures, and you’ll find your bucket list growing ever longer! Rick has a very calm, engaging voice, which jets you off effortlessly to faraway places.
2. Armchair Explorer
If you’re looking for a completely immersive travel experience, look no further than Armchair Explorer! In each episode, travel writer, Aaron Miller, along with some of the world’s greatest explorers, take us on a mind-blowing adventure with his documentary-style podcast. Aaron Miller’s enthusiasm for travel and adventure is contagious and the sweeping, cinematic-level music and sound effects make for one incredibly engaging audio adventure. If you’re needing to escape to the great outdoors, but are currently unable to do so, this is the podcast you need. Whether you want to travel to outer space for a quick spacewalk, roam the jungles of Rwanda in search of mountain gorillas, or fancy getting your heart racing with a cage diving experience with Great White Sharks, then you should definitely consider becoming an armchair explorer.
3. JUMP Podcast with Traveling Jackie
If you’re looking for practical travel tips as well as some extra inspiration to go out and experience all the world has to offer, then you should definitely subscribe to JUMP with Traveling Jackie, previously known as The Budget-Minded Traveler. Focusing on adventurous travel, Traveling Jackie covers everything from packing tips, language hacks, and those all-important budget boosting tricks. She has a contagious energy and makes you feel like you, too, can get off the beaten track and get out and see the world. There are some great interviews with really inspiring guests sharing their fascinating travel experiences, which will put the spark in your travel plans as soon as the travel bans are over. Her vast and varied travel experience – with 53 countries and counting – guarantees that there are plenty of insider tips for exploring well-known destinations as well as those hidden gems across the continents.
4. Amateur Traveler Travel Podcast
It’s easy to see why Amateur Traveler is such a well-loved travel podcast! And with over 600 episodes in the bank, there’s plenty of traveling to be done with host Chris Christensen. With travels to so many of the world’s best destinations, there’s an adventure for every type of traveler. Whether you want to climb Mount Kilimanjaro, go on a road trip along the Oregon Coast, or visit a National Park in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, you’ll glean tons of valuable information on your destination of choice. Each episode is so chock-full of well-researched detail that you’ll really feel like you were there and got the T-shirt. So if you’re interested in a world-wide journey across every continent while you’re stuck at home, this show is a must-listen.
5. Taste Trekkers’ Find Dining Podcast
I don’t know about you, but I love experiencing a new culture through their food. There’s no better way to immerse yourself in a new place than by tucking into some delicious local cuisine. So if you’re a traveler who loves food or a foodie who loves travel, then Taste Trekkers’ Find Dining Podcast will be right up your alley! Host Seth Resler interviews culinary experts and food bloggers from all around the world to get the inside scoop on where and what to eat in their cities. It’s a super interesting show, giving plenty of food for thought in terms of food philosophy and new trends, and it’s guaranteed to get your mouth watering! Not only will your “where to eat” list grow exponentially, but it can also provide some fun lockdown activities if you’re keen to try your hand at some cultural cooking in your own kitchen from all the inspiration you’ll get while you listen. And you’ll probably need to because you’ll be salivating from the moment you hit “play”!
6. The New Paris Podcast
One of the most popular vacation destinations is, of course, The City of Love, Paris, France. If you’ve ever been or ever dreamed of traveling to The City of Lights, then The New Paris Podcast should definitely be in your library. Hosted by the author of The New Paris, Lindsey Tramulta, and fashion journalist Alice Cavanaugh, this podcast is perfect for the traveler who loves knowing all the ins and outs of the place they will be exploring. The episodes are so varied and aim to showcase the progression of the ideologies and philosophies of thought that are so ingrained in French culture. There are interviews with local experts, as well as with those making waves in a variety of fields closely linked to the identity of Paris, like French cuisine to haute couture. It’s a fascinating study of this most-beloved city, and once you “return” from your binge listen, you’ll emerge feeling like a true Parisian, armed with your new-found knowledge.
7.Trail Less Traveled
The Trail Less Traveled is another podcast that will transport you and your imagination on an incredible global journey. This show uses our earliest form of entertainment, storytelling, to take the listener on an unforgettable audible adventure. Host Mandela is a true global citizen and shares her fascination with different cultures with us through her immersive adventures. Each episode features an interview with an adventurer sharing their stories and experiences right from their natural habitat. You’ll hear stories from some of the most remote places on the planet, but no matter where Mandela is reporting from, you’ll feel like you’re right there with her. It’s easy to see why this show has countless five-star reviews, as Mandela’s natural curiosity and wonder is contagious, and her dedication to documenting the many facets of humanity is nothing short of inspiring. It’s a magical listen which will whisk you away, even just for a little bit.
8. Extra Pack of Peanuts
Extra Pack of Peanuts is another of the most popular travel podcasts available. Hosted by husband and wife, Travis and Heather Sherry, this show aims to teach the avid traveler just how to travel more for a whole lot less. There are interviews with some top names in the travel game, as well as plenty of great hacks and tips for major price cuts and wallet savers for your next trip. On top of that, there is, of course, great insight into what it is really like to travel to some of the world’s most popular places, where you should sleep, where and what you should eat, as well as the top activities you should include in your itinerary. There is a wealth of knowledge to share with listeners, and their fun, laid-back approach will help make your next adventure one that is stress-free and light on your savings. With all their great travel tips, you’ll have plenty to learn as you wait out the travel ban and you’ll be more than ready to see the world on a budget as soon as planes are once again allowed to roam the skies.
There is nothing quite like the experience of traveling, of getting to experience the tastes, the smells, the sights of someplace new. The “finding your feet”, your first sip of the local tea or coffee, immersing yourself in the culture, experiencing the nightlife, and sampling local cuisine, it’s all magical. But I’m sure you’ll agree, now more than ever, the ability to travel is a privilege we will not take for granted when all of this is over! However, this list of incredible podcasts proves that we can still appreciate the magic of travel without stepping out the front door. And while right now, staying home is what is best for those around us as well as ourselves, sometimes we still long for the escape travel gives us. Let these podcasts be your boarding passes to a worldwide trip of discovery and exploration. They will help (for the time being at least) satisfy your wanderlust and help scratch that travel itch. So pop these shows onto your playlist, buckle up, and you’ll be ready to escape on one wild adventure!