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TraveLit--A blog about travel literature. 

     Even with the best of maps and instruments, we can never fully chart our journeys.

Book Review

Travels With a Donkey in the Cevennes
By Robert Louis Stevenson. First published 1879.

In 1878 Robert Louis Stevenson, then in his twenties, set out from the village of Le Monastier to travel south through the Cevennes, the mountain range of south-central France. Determined to try to camp out, he had a sleeping sack constructed and then acquired a donkey to carry it.

The sleeping sack was a novelty—“a child of my invention,” as he calls it. But he himself, as he observes, was a novelty. “A traveller of my sort was a thing hitherto unheard of in that district. I was looked upon with contempt, like a man who should project a journey to the moon, but yet with a respectful intent, like one setting forth for the inclement Pole.” Read More 

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Travel Quotation

"For my part, I travel not to go anywhere, but to go. I travel for travel's sake. The great affair is to move; to feel the needs and hitches of our life more nearly; to come down off this feather-bed of civilisation, and find the globe granite underfoot and strewn with cutting flints."
―Robert Louis Stevenson, Travels With a Donkey in the Cevennes

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Book Review

In A Sunburned Country
By Bill Bryson. Broadway Books, 2000, 307 pp.

In A Sunburned Country is too new to be considered a classic and Bill Bryson certainly can’t be called a “little-known” writer, but I enjoyed this book so much I feel compelled to recommend it. I’ve long wanted to return to Australia, having visited only briefly, and Bryson’s book intensified my longing to go back and see everything I missed—or some of what I missed, at least. As the author’s journey makes clear, this country is so huge that even traveling for weeks over many miles, you will still manage only a small portion of the continent’s vast territory. Read More 

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