I believe you can never start reading or talking about travel too young, and so why not kill two birds with one stone by reading some baby books about travel? When I was writing up a list of the best kids' travel books I wanted to include a short section with the best baby books with a travel theme. What I thought would be a short list evolved into a selection of over 20 different books, all worth being on your shelves for reading time with your baby.
The Best Baby Books About Travel
It will come as no surprise that I introduced books to my babies very early on, but I'll be honest, I didn't exactly read books to my boys until they were over six months. I just found they didn't have the attention span or interest in being read to, but that doesn't meant they didn't get to see, play and know books well before then.
Whether it's a cloth book they can chew on, a fold out board book with black and white images they can see while their eyes still develop (before six weeks) or a tactile book with different textures for babies to explore, books aren't just for reading. And if you are a travel-loving family and want to install a sense of adventure in your little one at a young age, you'll want to know about these best baby travel books. While the range below features characters of all colours, if you're looking specifically for travel books written by Black and Brown authors featuring kids of colour, this is a great list.
FURTHER READING: Don't focus only on books for your baby! Find out about some great travel books for older kids here, and you should definitely indulge your own wanderlust for one of the most beautiful cities in the world, with this reading list of the best books about Amsterdam.
I started reading books to my babies in their earliest weeks and I quickly learned that if these books were ones that I enjoyed looking at and reading to my babies over and over (and over and over!) again, this made it a much more interesting process. As a travel blogger, it's no surprise, therefore that my love of travel seeped into my choice of books for babies and indeed, many these travel books for babies are among my most favourite books that I still read with both my one-year-old and four-year-old.
But let's be honest for a moment about baby books. Books and babies don't always mix well and there's a reason cloth books are so popular because they're practically unbreakable, although you should see just how enthusiastically my little drool monsters would chow down on a fabric book. The same goes for board books with felt flaps - they're always going to last longer than paper flaps on paper pages. So, you can be confident that nearly all of these travel baby books are board books with baby-friendly felt flaps and the like!
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Best Travel Books for Babies
So here we go, my top picks for the best baby books about travel from the earliest weeks, right through to when baby is ready to say words for what they see so can make train noises and the like. Enjoy!
Let's Go! by Smriti Prasadam-Halls and Emily Bolam - For very young babies (under six weeks) black and white are the only colours they see, so high contrast black and white board books are ideal for them to stare at while having a spot of tummy time or a cuddle with a carer. This one introduces babies to 10 different kinds of vehicles. It's a book that I think older siblings will enjoy sharing with newborn babies too.
When... by Emma Dodd - I adore Emma Dodd's books as they seem to magically make real bonding moments with your babies. Using as few words as possible this book tells the story of a small bear and a big bear (parent/guardian-child, siblings, friends, who knows!?) as one tells the other what they hope to be when they grow up all the while navigating different challenges and terrains; a real journey in many sense of the word!
My Little Cities Series - I have tried not to feature specific destinations, but these board books are worth including because they really do make excellent baby travel guides in some ways should you be planning on some travel with your infant. They may not fully comprehend what the book represents but one day in the future these colourful images of typical or traditional scenes in Paris, New York, London and San Francisco.
Around the World by Katie Howarth & Craig Shuttlewood - A great book to test a baby's fine motor skills while also taking them on a journey around the world, they will love tracing a white line through different landscape's and scenes, and you will love the modern illustrations and simple, rhyming text.
Hello World! Series by Jill McDonald - These books are brilliantly colourful, wonderfully robust (board books for babies ALWAYS!) and cover a wide range of topics to introduce baby and young toddlers to this wonderful world we live in. Kick off your collection with Planet Earth, and then add other favourites like Rainforest Animals, Arctic Animals and Solar System.
All Aboard Books! by Haily Meyers & Kevin Meyers - Admittedly quite US-centric, but these board books for babies are all about travel. From National Parks, to city-specific, babies will enjoy the colours and illustrations and their parents/guardians will like sharing their favourite places around the world with their little ones.
Things That Go by Campbell Books (Illustrated by Christiane Engel) - I love Campbell Books' books for babies. Their Peekaboo range is my absolute favourite for babies under 1 (felt flaps for the win!) as they are really colourful, simple and feature diverse faces. Things That Go introduces babies to all kinds of vehicles and transport from bikes to planes and little fingers will love the pushing/pulling opportunities with the sliders.
Other books by Campbell Books about travel or transport that I think babies will love include Peekaboo Hello You, Busy Airport and Busy Holiday, both perfect for getting babies over the age of one ready for their first holiday.
London Series by Campbell Books - I know I said I wasn't going to include any destination-specific books in this list but turns out I lied, because Campbell's range of London books for babies and toddlers is just so lovely (and with London as my home city I couldn't resist), in addition to rag/fabric books they have ones with big flaps and tactile surfaces, and sliders. And again, lots of diverse faces for baby to see as the books explore London's buses, Underground and taxis.
Moon Landing by Campbell Books (Illustrated by Lon Lee) - It's never too early to learn about travel space and the first man on the moon. In this colourful book babies will start to learn about it all while enjoying slides to push and pull on each page.
Little World Series by Ladybird (Illustrated by Alison Black) - World-renowned publishers Ladybird also have a small range of baby travel books called the Litttle World series, which are brightly coloured, full page illustrations with few words and fun push-pull sliders. I found four of these books on Amazon; one about going to the moon, one about a jungle journey, one about exploring under the sea, and my favourite, one about taking a trip through the city.
It's a Small World: Hello World! by Disney - This book has the simplest of concepts but it has a big impact, even on adults as all it does is introduce you and baby to a number of different ways to say "Hello" around the world. In doing so you are introducing your child to different languages and faces at the earliest and most important age.
My First Atlas by Philip Dauncey and Stephen Barker - For certain this atlas is not one you try to navigate the world with as country names and details are omitted but it's a colourful, simple introduction to the concept of maps and travel that babies will love looking at as they spot animals, birds and ocean creatures.
The Tickle Book by Ian Whybrow and Axel Scheffler - All aboard this train journey where Tom and Bear dish out tickles and as will you as your baby enjoys lifting up flaps and also learning about the way journeys begin, progress and end.
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Frances M. Thompson
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