Hi. I’m Ann.
I want my kids to learn more about the world, but we can’t always travel. When we can’t travel, we read books. Sometimes it’s hard to find great books online. Since I never found an online resource that sorted this out for me – I created this one.
(Contact me here.)
I’ve studied five languages (German, Italian, Latin, Japanese, and Chinese). I graduated college with a degree in international affairs. I’ve worked as a travel advisor and a travel abroad coordinator for a university. My parents come from two different countries (United States, Philippines). I grew up in five different countries (Philippines, Korea, Japan, United States, and Germany). I loved Germany so much that I moved there again, as an adult, and lived there for five years. We recently returned to the United States – and I can’t wait to see what’s next.
My family travel philosophy
I worked as a travel advisor on a college campus. My customers were either seasoned travelers or newbies. Whether they traveled as kids or not, both groups were amazing college students. When they left for the trips they booked through me, most of them wanted more. I like to think that they wanted more because they loved working with me, but I know the truth. They were hooked.
Then I started working in the college’s study abroad office. Many of these students were inexperienced travelers. They each had their reasons for studying abroad. They all returned wanting more. Again… hooked. It was while working at the study abroad office, planning focused itineraries needed for credits in a certain class, that I started to really develop my own philosophy on travel. I love spontaneous travel, but there’s something special about having a deeper understanding of the place before, during, and after a visit. I started a shift in my own travel planning to coincide with this new idea.
I love traveling. I knew when I had kids that I would need to continue traveling. For my soul.
I knew I wanted my kids to learn about the world, experience as much of it as they could first hand, and recollect these memories so that they will always have the travel bug. For their soul.
I started writing about my thoughts online. For your soul… ok, just kidding.
For a while I blogged about family travel. One of my most popular posts there was for a free, one-page, kids travel journal printable. This travel journal exemplifies the importance I place in kids recollecting their travel memories. It encourages them to think about their trip while on their trip and is something tangible to look at afterwards. I also talked about some of the logistics of traveling with young kids (I had a baby and a toddler for most of the time that I blogged on that site), a lot of our international travel around popular US and European destinations, and more.
I then started a site called Belle NRW. It is a resource of family-friendly activities to do in Nord Rhein Westfalen, the state in Germany we lived in. This site served my personal goal of kids experiencing as much of the world as they can. In this case, this was their immediate world. I understand that long-distance and international travel is not always possible. But, that doesn’t mean you can’t do it. Start with your own city, county, and state. This can still satisfy an explorer’s soul. This can still give kids a desire to see more of the world.
Now that I’m back in the United States, I have created a new site for our local discoveries – Belle Carolinas (still under construction).
And, as I stated, earlier – when we can’t travel – we read books. Thus, Kids Travel Books. These books can be used to help prepare families for a trip, remind kids of places they’ve already been, explain cultural heritage to little ones who want to know where they come from, and/or show them places they’ve never seen.
About Kids Travel Books
My goal with this site is to have at least one book for each country. But, I want more than one book if possible. This is harder than it sounds. Some countries have tons of books from folktales to facts & figures. Yet other countries have none that I can find that have been published in the past 600 years.
For those countries with little to no representation – I’ll keep on looking. If you know of any, please let me know.
For those countries with tons of representation – this site doesn’t have it all, yet. I tried to include a variety of book styles to appeal to everyone. But, the most I’ve likely added for one country by the launch of this website is around 10 books. And many places have many more than 10 books. If you don’t like the options you see here, please click on the link that most closely resembles what you’re looking for and you will find yourself in a blackhole of possibility. Still, don’t worry, I’ll be constantly adding to this resource – you could always come back in a week’s time and find new options.
If you are an author, publisher, or reader of a book you think I’m missing, just email me and let me know.
Aside from making sure each country has at least 1-10 books, I have more specific plans. I’ll upload more books to the more popular tourist destination-countries. I’ll upload more city-specific books. I’ll upload more books for each of the 50 states and then the Canadian provinces and territories.
I am also working on a good solution to help you sort books by age.
About the organization of the countries
The countries are organized into 5 continent areas: Americas (to include North and South America), Europe, Africa, Asia, Australia & Oceania (which will also include any books in Antarctica).
*Please note: some territories are “owned” by countries on separate continents. They are listed under their geographically correct continent.
*Please note: some countries fall on the Transcontinental line and span more than one continent. If I couldn’t find a definitive answer, they are listed under the continent a majority of their land is located on.
Around the Web
Here are some guest posts I’ve written (I apologize as I’m working on updating this):
- Family Travel 411: The 411 on Charlotte with Kids
- Family Travel 411: The 411 on Cologne with Kids
- The Art of Nonconformity: Mini City Guide – Aachen
- Multicultural Kids Blogs: Books to Prepare Kids for a Trip Abroad
Here are some posts I’ve contributed on:
- Travel Babbo: Tips for Peak Season Travel
Here’s what people are saying about KidsTravelBooks:
“The depth of global coverage on KidsTravelBooks is unexpected and comprehensive, with books arranged by continent and country… Don’t miss the blog, which has author interviews and book reviews, and the Resource Library, with summer reading programs, a free downloadable Travel Journal, book lists and more.”