Only four days to go before setting off on the Dawn Princess World Cruise out of Sydney, Australia.

Tomorrow I’ll think about what to pack and make sure everything and everyone is organized during the time I’m away.

But I spent all of today deciding what books to take on this leisurely vacation. After all, when you’re about to be embark on 55 days at sea, choosing good reading material is crucial.

Here’s what I came up with…

A Tramp Abroad by Mark Twain is based on Twain’s 16 month journey around central and southern Europe between 1878 and 1879 and offers a hilarious look at old world Europe.

516CnWTaNkL__SL500_AA300_ W. Somerset Maugham: The Skeptical Romancer edited by Pico Iyer. Though best known for his dark outlook on human frailties in books such as Of Human Bondage and The Razor’s Edge, W. Somerset Maugham was also a curious and adventurous traveler who carefully documented his journeys and experiences.

original letters from indiaOriginal Letters from India by Eliza Fey. Written during a 1779 voyage across the world from England to India, these letters  offer a fascinating glimpse into Eliza Fey’s woman’s gruelling 12 month journey.

Letters Written During a Short Residence in Sweden, Norway, and Denmark by Mary Wollenstonecraft. A deeply personal travel narrative by an 18th century British feminist (who also happened to be the mother of Mary Shelley, author of Frankenstein)

coast to coast by jan morrisCoast to Coast by Jan Morris. In her very first book, Jan Morris narrates her one year journey through 1950’s America by car, train, ship, and aircraft.

It’s a  pretty diverse list of books. But they all have one thing in common –  long distance travel in a bygone era.