Best Audiobooks for Road Trips
Traveler & Writer
Wherever your next long drive leads, tune into one of these audiobooks for road trips. Organized by region, this list of location-specific literature will help you more deeply experience America’s diverse landscapes and cultures.
When road tripping through the South, these road trip audiobooks will immerse you in the equally rich language and landscape iconic of the region. Think Southern drawls that crawl like molasses in January and hauntingly beautiful live oak trees dripping with Spanish moss. These works will transport you to life in the Deep South, where the tea is sweet, the neighbors are nosy, and the history is living.
“Midnight in the Garden of Good & Evil” by John Berendt takes place in Savannah, Georgia, and is applauded for its rich narration of the antics of a diverse cast of characters in the Hostess City.
“Gone with the Wind” by Margaret Mitchell is partially set in Atlanta, Georgia, and tells the saga of protagonist Scarlet O’Hara during the Civil War.
One of the most underrated and misunderstood regions of the United States might be Appalachia. The frontier of the original 13 colonies, the area is still full of epic wilderness, complex histories, and resilient communities. Featuring everything from moonshiners to coal mines to bluegrass, these are the best audiobooks for road trips through Appalachia.
“The Wettest County in the World” by Matt Bondurant takes place in Franklin County, Virginia, and inspired the moonshine-smuggling movie “Lawless” starring Shia LaBeouf and Tom Hardy.
“Demon Copperhead” by Barbara Kingsolver is set in southern Appalachia and tells the story of a young man’s upbringing in rural poverty.
The Rocky Mountains
If the best audiobooks for long drives are inspired by natural wonder, the Rocky Mountains are the perfect setting for any bestseller. Extreme, impressive, unforgiving—this landscape has a lot to convey and so does the literature based here. Check out these Rocky Mountain road trip audiobooks next time you drive through the continental divide!
“A Lady’s Life in the Rocky Mountains” by Isabella L. Bird is a memoir of the British author’s 1875 trip across the Colorado Rockies.
“Kings of Colorado” by David E. Hilton tells the tale of a troubled boy’s experience on a reformatory ranch in Colorado.
“East of Eden” by John Steinbeck, considered to be one of his best works, brings to life the Salinas Valley of central California.
“Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail” by Cheryl Strayed is part memoir, part hiking guide, and takes readers on the author’s quest to conquer the Pacific Crest Trail.
With its quaint, colonial architecture, rich history, and distinct seasons, New England is a great place for road trips. Tons of fantastic historical fiction and literature is set in this iconic region. While you’re on the road, tune into one of these audiobooks set in America’s northeast.
“My Side of the Mountain” by Jean George is a popular piece of youth literature but appropriate for all ages as it tells the story of a young boy who runs away from home to live in Catskill Mountains of upstate New York.
“The Good House” by Ann Leary is a dark comedy following the life of a woman’s local interactions in a quintessential New England setting.
“Desperation” by Stephen King is a science-fiction horror that take place along Nevada’s desolate Highway 50.
“Half Broke Horses” by Jeanette Walls is a brutally honest and insightful biographical novel about the author’s grandmother’s upbringing during the Dust Bowl.
“Devil in the White City” by Erik Larson takes place during the 1893 World’s Fair in Chicago and is a dark glimpse into what is often portrayed as a golden era.