The Art of Travel has become one of my favourite nonfiction books from the very first pages. I love Alain de Botton more and more after reading his books. I do not know whether I am getting old or my thoughts of life are changing, but if there are ten more authors like him, I will want to read them.
My favourite of his books is this one. While I was reading it, I smiled profusely, got excited, sad, muted, and stopped and thought genuinely. I also read the episodes that impressed me the most to my husband; we laughed and discussed them thoroughly. As you can see, this is an enjoyable book to read and share.
In every section of The Art of Travel, there is a famous author, artist or thinker as our guide. I especially admired (as you can imagine) the guidance of Vincent van Gogh.
In the chapter titled “On Eye-Opening Art” Alain de Botton talks about how he spent his holiday in Provence, under the influence of Van Gogh. It was highly enjoyable to read how he saw things differently.
In the chapter “On Possessing Beauty”, the guide is John Ruskin. From now on, wherever I go, I will carry a pencil and a small notebook with me because of Ruskin. Reading about him in this book was a delight for me as I love him dearly. Now I realize that I have all the kinds words about each episode, but I will not write them cause I want you to discover them yourself. All I can say is that don’t forget that a philosopher wrote this book and don’t confuse it with guide books. The rest is already fantastic. Enjoy!
The Art of Travel
Few activities seem to promise as much happiness as going travelling: taking off for somewhere else, somewhere far from home, a place with more interesting weather, customs and landscapes. But although we are inundated with advice on where to travel to, we seldom ask why we go and how we might become more fulfilled by doing so.
With the help of a selection of writers, artists and thinkers – including Flaubert, Edward Hopper, Wordsworth and Van Gogh – Alain de Botton provides invaluable insights into everything from holiday romance to hotel minibars, airports to sightseeing. The perfect antidote to those guides that tell us what to do when we get there, The Art of Travel tries to explain why we really went in the first place – and helpfully suggest how we might be happier on our journeys.
Alain de Botton
Alain de Botton, FRSL is a Swiss-born British philosopher and author. His books discuss various contemporary subjects and themes, emphasizing philosophy’s relevance to everyday life. He published Essays in Love, which went on to sell two million copies.
Reading this book contributed to these challenges: