Just Returned From → Sun Peaks, British Columbia. Headed To → Bella Coola, British Columbia.

10 Best Songs For Travellers

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Load up your iPod with these 10 songs; a custom-made playlist I put together for adventurous travellers like you.

In This Travel/Music Article You Will Discover:

  • Classic Songs for Travellers
  • Songs to Inspire
  • Songs For Introspective Types
  • And More…

Whether for inspiration or introspection, music and travel go hand-in-hand. Here are my picks for the 10 Best Songs for Travellers:

Hard Sun – Eddie Vedder

Best For: Heading into the wilderness alone.

Part of the soundtrack to the film Into the Wild, this song by living-legend Eddie Vedder seems to encapsulate all the wonder and power of nature.

Good Life — One Republic

Best For: In-flight vacation anticipation.

This feel-good tune from pop superstars One Republic is the new traveller’s anthem — fun, light and self-satisfied.

Born to be Wild — Steppenwolf

Best For: Hitting the open road on two wheels.

This tune reeks of being an overplayed, outdated classic rock staple — until you scream the lyrics inside your helmet while riding a motorcycle way too fast. Then you’ll understand.

Weighty Ghost — Wintersleep

Best For: Hippie backpackers the world ’round.

This lesser-known, jangling, funky song conjures up images of restless travellers and restless lives.

Roam — The B52’s

Best For: Road-tripping with friends.

“Roam if you want to/Roam around the world.” ‘Nuff said — but to me, it’s the fun, spirit-lifting melody of this song that really makes it a travel favourite.

Redemption Song — Bob Marley

Best For: Late night campfires on any beach, anywhere.

Maybe it’s simply the international, borderless spirit of Bob Marley that makes this one a traveller’s favourite, ‘cause lord knows the song ain’t about vacationing.

Heading for Nowhere — Jets Overhead

Best For: Staring out a bus window into a strange land.

A relentless beat and point-perfect lyrics make this track perfect for anyone who is as the song title says. Oh, and I know the drummer. NBD.

Wagon Wheel — Old Crow Medicine Show

Best For: Hitchhiking with no set destination.

Modern bluegrass sound with an inescapable hook helps this song from OCMS inspire the vagabond in all of us.

Wish You Were Here — Pink Floyd

Best For: When you’re feeling homesick.

Be careful how homesick you are before playing this mood-depresser — you may just sit down and cry right there.

Paper Planes — M.I.A

Best For: A “particular” type of travel…

Fans of the song will know what I mean. Regardless, M.I.A’s tongue-in-cheek, “rebel-rousing” tale of international drug runners is perfect even for the wanna-be outlaw. (We all know it’s meant to be an ironic statement about the stereotyping of minorities, right?)

What is your favourite travel song?

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Lead Image Lesya Boyko/dreamstime

About the author: David Webb is a Vancouver, BC-based travel writer, photographer and magazine editor.

6 comments… add one
  • Shachar Oct 31, 2016

    One republic good life is in my list too 🙂
    however I suggest you to try Jack Johnson as well.

  • Somehow I’m guessing that the ironic Leavin on Jet Plane by John Denver probably won’t make this list!

  • Migration Expert Aug 16, 2012

    This list is amazing! Another great song you could add to the list if “Half Mast” by Empire of the Sun. I love listening to this song not only when I’m traveling, it’s an all-moment song lol if there’s a thing. More power to you! 🙂

  • Amar May 24, 2012

    Good post man! I would have to say House of Pain – Jump Around. Doesn’t matter where or when you play it, everyone knows it and it just gets everyones energy up.

  • David Webb May 21, 2012

    For sure… I almost placed that one on the list. There’s also this great Vancouver-based band called “Warless” that has some really good tunes as well…

  • Keith Leinweber May 21, 2012

    Another good one is “Ramblin’ Man” by Lemon Jelly. Perfect for looking out the window of a bus. 🙂

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