What do I Pack for one Year on the Road: Part 1 – Books

Next week we will be gone – for one year on the road! Currently we spend most of our time packing our things together and I thought it could be of interest for you to see what I pack. I have a few posts planned with the different categories of things that I pack, and today I want to start to the category that is most important to me: books!

Which books to bring for one year of travels? Which are the books that I cannot live without during a trip around Europe? This is what I am sharing in today’s blog post!

I decided to put the books into four categories: travel guides, camper van guides, health related books, and general books.

We will be travelling with a quite big van so we do have some space. This is why I am able to bring the amount of books that I chose for the year: some of you may think this is a lot, others may think this isn’t enough. I think it is just right 🙂

Let’s begin with the general books that I decided to bring with me for one year in a camper van…

I have a few books that I cannot live without… these are:

Dalai Lama: 108 pearls of wisdom

I love reading in this book every now and then, reminding myself of how I want to live and who I want to be. It is a wonderful little book to just keep close to you and to read one of the “pearls of wisdom” whenever possible, think about them, discuss them with friends, or just let them sink into your heart.

Elizabeth Gilbert: Big Magic

I am currently reading this book and even though it is easy to fast to read, I think I won’t finish it before our departure so I will bring it with me on the trip. It is a wonderful little book, reminding you of your own creativitiy and how to get and keep it in your life.

Neale Donald Walsch: What God Said and When Everything Changes, Change Everything

I’ve been writing about Neale Donald Walsch back in this post and here I just want to repeat that no other books had such an immense impact on my life! They helped me totally understand myself, the world, life in general, and everything around. I LOVE his books and these two are the ones that I am going to bring for the journey for sure… however, I do consider bringing two or three more, to be honest.

Dalai Lama and Desmond Tutu: The Book of Joy

If you haven’t read this book yet, you should absoluty do it now! This is another one of those books that I just read over and over again – because you just forget things over time and I love to constantly reminding myself of all the wise words in that book. As the title says, it is all about joy: Desmond Tutu and the Dalai Lama are having a conversation about joy all while Douglas Abrams is commenting the conversation and is complementing the book by adding scientific studies on joy and happiness. It’s wonderful. No matter if you are spiritual in any sense or not – you will love this book!

Now to travel guides…

We are mainly bringing travel guides for countries that we do not know ANYTHING about yet (Slovenia, Rumania, Croatia, and Albania). However, we also bought a “EUROPE” guide so that we have at least a little bit of an overview over all the countries. And then we have the Portugal guide anyway, and since we are going to spend at least one month in Portugal, we will take that one too. We love Portugal 😀

We may get more travel guides during the trip, but we aren’t sure about this yet. I know you can do a lot of your research online anyway, but we are pretty old fashioned when it comes to paper books: we just like to sit there with a book in our hands, putting a “post it” here and there on a page that we find intersting, and write notes on the pages and/or maps.

Camper guides

When we first decided to take a year off to travel Europe in a camper van, we had NO idea about all the great options for #vanlife people! And now that we know about them, we are so grateful for them! So the most amazing discovery for us was France Passion, Discover Espana, and Landvergnüngen. When you purchase these books, you actually get a guide with the addresses of hundreds of farms in (respectively) France, Spain, and Germany, where you can stay for free! 

I know, you can also stay for free somewhere in Nature. But travelling around with two kids, we actually prefer staying on private ground instead of somewhere in the wild (which doesn’t say we won’t so that as well… when we first get used to ou van life…). Also, staying on (organic) farms instead of the wild will allow us to get in contact with locals AND get fresh orgnic greens whereever we are!

We also have one camper van guide (for Portugal) and I LOVE it! I can’t wait to get more guides like this one, but unfortunatly there aren’t that many out there… I will keep track on new publications and get more guides during our trip though.

Finally, I also bring a few health related books. We are travelling with small children so we bring this book called “Kindersprechstunde” (children consulation) in which we can find natural remedies and first aid tips for all kinds of diseases and damages. You may have seen my post on our first aid kit with essential oils as well!? We usually only use herbal remedies and do really fine with them. 

Another book I bring is “Vegan Klichee ade” from Niko Rittenau. It’s a German book and it is pretty much clearing up prejudices about a vegan diet. I like to have to this one on board because I like to be well informed about all the prejudices on a vegan diet that are out there. And since I cannot always keep EVERYTHING in my head, I like to re-read every now and then.

And finally, I also bring “Disease Proof your Child” from Joel Fuhrman, because I want to re-read that one as well. I read it when my first daughter started eating (almost four years ago) and now that my little son will start eating in around four monthy from now, I want to update my knowledge.


And yes, that is pretty much it!

What are the books that you cannot live without? Do you know any of the books that I am taking with me? Feel free to share in the comments!


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