Catalan books for travelling without leaving home
The pandemic has taken away our freedom to travel physically, but there are many other ways to enter new worlds. We have made a list of the best travel books in Catalan literature for you to travel without leaving home.
Many people are eagerly awaiting the end of the pandemic so that they can travel to all corners of the planet, to all kinds of unknown places. Whether you like travelling or not, there definitely is a place on this planet that you wish you could touch with your hands. But until we get back to normal and travel is safe again, we offer you a set of Catalan travel books, with which you will enjoy different stories about travel without going too far. The best books always reflect the best stories. Have a nice trip.
Viatge a Rússia, Josep Pla
It was published in 1925, following the trip that the young Josep Pla made to Russia a few years after the Revolution, in order to get to know a mysterious country under construction. A journey carried out by one of the best Catalan prose writers of the 20th century, at that time sent as a newspaper correspondent to the still quite unknown Russia. He went there only a year after the death of the Soviet leader Vladimir Lenin, and there he met and was welcomed by the politician and translator Andreu Nin, who would die assassinated during the Civil War. A real journalistic gem of one of the best Catalan chroniclers.
L’últim traginer, Josep Maria Espinàs
If you are more of an adventurer while walking, you will like the latest book by Espinàs, published in 2021. The novel takes you on a journey through the Aran Valley and the Pallars. Through a journey through time, it takes you back to the Valley of 1956, without ski resorts, within a historic rural world where the Civil Guards ride bicycles. This world full of nostalgia and adventure will surely make you travel.
El gran llibre dels exploradors catalans, Joan de Déu Prats
Here we have another literary gem of this 2021, illustrated by Maria Padilla, an important added value. You will find different stories, such as that of an ambassador at the court of the Grand Kan of Persia, or that of a sailor son of a Mallorcan soldier, among other characters with lives full of adventures that arouse curiosity. All in all, a book with careful documentation work behind it that transports you with your eyes closed to the smallest corner of their stories. A book to enjoy reading, as well as the wonderful illustrations you will find.
El Marroc sensual i fanàtic, Aurora Bertrana
This book, by the Girona author and cellist Aurora Bertrana, was first published in 1936. The book is a chronicle of the writer’s trip to Morocco in 1935, on the occasion of a study to analyse the relations between men and women in Muslim culture. Definitely a charming read to put us in the shoes of a great journey undertaken by an independent woman ahead of her time.
Històries del Japó, Xavier Moret
Another great publication of this 2021. Reading it will be like travelling through Japan. The book is an open door to the culture of this eastern country through the writer’s travels in the land of contrasts, and thanks to his passage through Tokyo, Kyoto, Osaka, and the three islands: Honshu, Kyushu, and Shikoku. Don’t miss it.
L’ocell de foc, Emili Teixidor
Although it looks like a children’s novel, this book is suitable for anyone who wants to delve into the feudal world. First published in 1972, the adventure takes us to the beginning of the 13th century, where a troubadour apprentice named Ocell de foc, while travelling, encounters the story of the young King James I, and delves into the life of monasteries while questioning his own identity. All this while surviving a thousand adventures to find his true destiny. Medieval times, Cathars, minstrels, Provence… Undoubtedly, these are pages full of adventure after adventure.
We finish by reminding you that books are true travel companions, quoting Joana Raspall: “You will not miss company with books for friends. A star to guide you can be every page”.
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Plan your holiday, pack your bags, and grab a book.