6 travel podcasts to fuel your wanderlust

Let’s be honest: Instagram tends to get all of the glory when it comes to sharing travel experiences. And that’s fair, to an extent: Scrolling through stunning pictures and videos is a great way to get inspired to book a trip or gather key recommendations for one you’re already planning. But it’s not the only way: In fact, you can get all of that from podcasts. There may not be pretty pictures, but there are engaging hosts, compelling sounds, fascinating stories and valuable advice. “I love listening to travel podcasts while on the way to a destination,” said Jennifer O’Brien, editor-in-chief of The Travel Women. “I especially love finding guests or hosts who have great stories or specialize in the destination I’m headed to, so I can learn from them before my plane even touches down.” Regardless of when you tune in, these six travel podcasts are sure to feed your wanderlust.

The Trip by Nathan Thornburgh

To say Nathan Thornburgh is a well-seasoned traveler would be a serious understatement. Before co-founding Roads & Kingdoms, he spent almost a decade as a foreign correspondent for TIME, and has reported from all over the globe. With The Trip, which launched in 2018, he brings listeners on some of his most epic journeys. “The Trip dives into the quirkier side of adventure travel,” said Jordan Bishop, founder of Yore Oyster and founding editor of How I Travel. “They cover everything from cave dwellers in southern Spain, to love hotels in Tokyo to life in a Danish commune. Expect to gasp at least once per episode.”

Our Americana by Josh Hallmark

Travel isn’t only about hopping on long-haul flights to check out destinations as far from home as possible or zipping around the world’s biggest meccas. There’s much to discover in our own backyards and in the small towns that we might not even know exist. Our Americana brings listeners to those places. “I love this podcast because it really gets to the heart of what travel is truly about: broadening our perspectives through the eyes of other people,” said Tom Marchant, co-founder of luxury travel operator Black Tomato. “Inspiration and meaningful connections to people can be found in the smallest of towns — from Marfa, Texas to Petoskey, Michigan. While it’s incredible and special to meet people from communities all over the world, we can’t overlook the unique stories and cultures close to home.”

The Offbeat Life by Debbie Arcangeles

With each episode of her podcast, Debbie Arcangeles — who has traveled the world working as a photojournalist, teacher and entrepreneur — pulls back the curtain on life as a digital nomad. And it’s more than just giving listeners a glimpse into what that life is like; it also comes with advice and resources for those who want to dive in. “If you’re looking to fully incorporate travel into your lifestyle as a digital nomad, you will love tuning into The Offbeat Life,” O’Brien said. “I absolutely love the real-life tips and stories her guests share and hearing her journey in becoming a digital nomad. Her conversational style makes every episode feel like you’re just listening to a friend’s story.”

Indie Travel Podcast by Craig and Linda Martin

Craig and Linda Martin have been podcasting since before podcasting was really A Thing (seriously: the first episode of Indie Travel Podcast was posted to iTunes in 2010); and they’ve been traveling together full-time for even longer. With the podcast, the New Zealanders share practical travel tips — from packing lists to destination recommendations — as well as stories from their own jet-setting adventures and interviews with other travelers. “I’m going to repurpose an old adage to better fit podcasts: ‘Come for the topic, stay for the host rapport,’” said Kevin Goldberg, founder of Discover Pods. “Craig and Linda...are ‘relationship goals’ personified. They travel the world, have a lovely time, are incredibly interesting and to top it off, have great accents.”

The Menu by Monocle

For some people, there’s no separating wanderlust and foodism: Exploring a new destination and its food go hand-in-hand. Monocle’s The Menu is the podcast version of that. “Though not explicitly a travel podcast, The Menu looks at different parts of the world through the lens of food,” Bishop said. “Most episodes take you to a local restaurant in a chic neighborhood in some distant city, where the Monocle team meets with award-winning chefs and rising restaurateurs. Always insightful and never bland, The Menu is one of the most underrated travel podcasts out there.”

Travel Genius by Bloomberg

Travel Genius is relatively new (it launched in late 2018), but it’s already full of the kind of hacks and advice pretty much any traveler can benefit from. “Co-hosts Nikki Ekstein and Mark Ellwood, two prolific travel writers, do a fantastic job interviewing major players in the travel industry and relay their own personal tips and tricks covering simple topics like getting flight upgrades to creating more complex conversations on why people feel compelled to break rules and [have] a lack of inhibition while globe-trotting,” Marchant said. “Definitely worth subscribing.”