What Inspires The Inspiring People?

As part of the inaugural International Street Food Festival on The Dropout Diaries, I asked travel bloggers to share some things that inspired them.

So as well as some of the world’s most fabulous street food sensations, I got a boatload of inspirational stuff – book recommendations, thoughts, quotes and details of other inspirational people.

I found there wasn’t room at the street food festival for all the inspiration that came my way. But the inspiration is too good not to share.

So, let me re-introduce you to some amazing travel bloggers, who are inspirational in their own right simply for getting out there and chasing their dream of traveling the world.

Over the next few days I will share some of the stuff that inspires them. (And what inspires an inspirational person has got to be pretty powerful stuff, right?)

Today, the inspiring panel of travel bloggers talk about the books that have inspired them.

Travels by Michael Crichton, because it changes your definition of what it means to travel – Raymond from Man on the Lam

Bossypants by Tina Fey. Probably not your typical inspirational book, but it’s hilarious. And that’s really how I get my inspiration – from laughing so loud that I’m spewing snot out of my nose – Sally, Unbrave Girl

The Plantation by Di Morressey.  It’s not your typical ‘inspiring’ book, but I loved the theme of genealogical travel, as I have always been fascinated by the stories of the lands, places, and times as well as the personalities of my ancestors. – Amy from Livin On The Road

Cutting for Stone by Abraham Verghese. In many ways Cutting for Stone is depressing, but the author’s rich descriptions have brought to life long-forgotten memories of daily life in Addis Ababa and the awe-inspiring sights in the area. – Nancy from Family on Bikes

Long Walk to Freedom by Nelson Mandela. Mandela’s autobiography gives a look inside one of the most influential people in the world. Learn about Mandela’s childhood and how his experience led him to become an anti-apartheid activist and president of a free South Africa. It’s fascinating. – Laura from A Wandering Sole

The Success Principles by Jack Canfield, because it inspired me to get off my ass – Raymond from Man on the Lam

My Family and Other Animals by Gerald Durrell. An amazing true story about Gerald Durrell’s family. In the 1930s, while Gerald was still a small boy, the whole family just took off on a whim to live on the island of Corfu for a few years – mother and four children. The book is Gerald’s account of what they got up to in the few years they were there. For a single-parent family to up and leave on a ship bound for Corfu in the 1930s must have been thought of as crazy but they did it nonetheless. – Julia from Turkey’s For Life

Pictures from Italy by Charles Dickens. All his books always makes me cry, laugh and wonder. – Mette from Italian Notes

Letters from Burma by Aung San Suu Kyi. This book is eloquent and simple. Suu Kyi shares not just Burma’s struggle for democracy, but the beauty and struggles of the Burmese people. – – Shannon from A Little Adrift

Don Quixote by Miguel de Cervantes. I read the book  as part of my self-designed “cultural orientation program” for moving to Spain. It’s about a bloke who is trying to be brave but is also a bit daft and it resonated with me for some reason. Also, it really blows me away that a writer can deliver laughs from a distance of almost four centuries away. Amazing. – Robin from A Lot Of Wind

What books have inspired you? Share your inspiration in the comments below.

8 years ago

By: Barbara

A career girl who dropped out, traveled, found love, and never got around to going home again. Now wrangling a cross-cultural relationship and two third culture kids.


  1. Great list – Shows how much I’m lagging behind in my travel reading:)

  2. Nancie says:

    Tales of a Female Nomad (Rita Golden Geldman)… This is a true story from a baby boomer female nomad. Proof that travel and living in another country is possible and attainable. Geldman opened herself up to the universe and amazing things happened. I couldn’t put it down.

  3. Some great books to add to my reading list.
    Stephanie – The Travel Chica recently posted..A Roving Wine Tasting in Buenos Aires

  4. love this list – thank you!!
    wandering educators recently posted..Book Review: The Voluntourist

  5. Perfect! I was in need of some additions to my Kindle line up 🙂
    Annette | Bucket List Journey recently posted..Piroshkys & a Cappuccino in Seattle

  6. Nailah says:

    Great list! Heading over to my iPad to start loading more ibooks!
    Nailah recently posted..Advice on Visiting Cappadocia

  7. Great list here and it means we can now go out and buy a few of the books recommended by the other bloggers. 🙂
    Turkey’s For Life recently posted..Fethiye: Sundials At The Sundial Hotel

  8. Liam says:

    What a great list, thank-you!

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