Without a good sense of humor, it becomes near impossible to become a traveler. The miseries and mysteries of a foreign culture only unfold upon those who can handle the bitter truth of life and sugar coat it with a hint of dark humor. We’re talking Mark Twain, who took pleasure in quoting the rich and ancient cultures from around the world, with his sweet strategy of wit. Here are some of the funniest travel books to add to your summer reading list to make up for your canceled flights:
Holidays in Hell by P.J. O’Rourke
Taking much inspiration from his conservative attitudes, P.J. O’Rourke calls himself the troubled tourist who deliberately makes his way through the political hot spots. During the 1980s, he pulled strings of humor as he made his way across Lebanon, Syria, Gaza, El Salvador, and the Philippines.
Queenan Country by Joe Queenan
To find out what makes the British tick, Yank Joe Queenan makes his way to the homeland of his dear wife and visits the extended family. The unapologetic writer quotes the British as poncey, but there wasn’t anything wrong with being poncey. The words are so impactful, they’ll make you feel as though you were traveling through Old Blighty.
Vroom With A View by Peter Moore
All the way from Milan to Rome on a ’61 Vespa, this book is a brilliant love letter to Italy. Mind you, the old Vespa was Peter’s beloved Sophia with saddle seats and an abundance of chrome. The audience is all praises for where Moore goes and where he comes from emotionally.
Note: don’t read it in any place you can’t afford to laugh out loud!
The Sex Life Of Cannibals by J. Maarten Troost
The story from the master of self-irony himself has been a winner for many. It’s one of the best funny travel books to add to your bucket list that showcases the adventures of Troost with his girlfriend in Kiribati for two years — a place rightfully sprinkled with Hepatitis A, B, and C. Be prepared to get offended with this one!
An American Walkabout by Reid Champagne
Reid Champagne is America’s funniest writer and witty author, who has endlessly contributed to the industry for over 35 years. He drafts the best travel books of all time. In his most recent book, An American Walkabout, Reid Champagne writes about the journey of innocence, naiveté, overreach, and Magoo-like self-discovery. The year is 1971 when a young man sets sail to Europe through the way of Thames River with $200 in his wallet. He writes, “if a tree falls in the wood, wouldn’t it like to know if it had made a sound?”
Reid Champagne is an American humorist author who shares humorous travel writing, long distance relationship humor, and insights into college romance on his blog. He’s just finished his documentation of the scrimp and save a trip to Iceland with his wife, Carol Madigan.