Read Around the World: Travel Reading Challenge

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Want to travel the world from your favorite reading chair? While I hope that you’ll be able to take some actual trips, you can also travel through the pages of a book with this read-around-the-world challenge!

If you’re looking for a reading goal that isn’t too difficult to complete, this travel-themed reading challenge is the perfect one to undertake in the new year.

12 prompts for 12 months that will allow you to read your way across seven continents and multiple genres!

Below you will find each month’s prompts, as well as book suggestions. You’ll also find links below to lists of books ranging from novels to memoirs covering a variety of cities and topics.

Bookmark this post so you can revisit it throughout the year and have easy access to all the book lists.

Read Around the World Challenge

January: A Book Set in Antarctica

January may be one of the coldest months of the year, but at least you aren’t in Antarctica! Kick off the first month of the Read Around the World Challenge with a book set in Antarctica.

Book Suggestions:

February: A Book Set in Africa

Moving on to February, the next stop on the Read Around the World Challenge takes us to Africa. This vast and diverse continent is home to 54 different countries.

Book Suggestions: 

Reading Suggestions: Best Books Set in Africa

March: A Historical Fiction Book Set Abroad

For March, try reading a historical fiction book set in a country other than your own. Choose from any country around the world, as long as it’s not your own!

Book Suggestions:

April: A Travel Memoir

There’s no better way to live vicariously through someone else’s adventures than by reading a travel memoir. Escape on a daring hike or mountain climb, or travel to faraway places while reading a travel memoir. Here are some of my top picks of books to read this month…

Book Suggestions:

Reading Suggestions: Brilliant Travel Memoirs by Women

May: A Book Set in Asia

Moving on to a new continent, May will transport you to Asia! Asia is the largest continent in the world by size and population and is home to 48 different countries.

Book Suggestions:

June: A Nonfiction Book About Another Country

While it can be fun to escape into a fictional book, this month is all about learning through nonfiction. (And nonfiction books can be really fun and entertaining too!)

For June, select a nonfiction book that is about a different country than your own.

Book Suggestions:

July: A Book Set in Australia

Next up is a book set in Australia!

Australia is both a country and a continent (also known as Oceania.) Oceania is made up of 14 countries, including Australia, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, and many Pacific island nations.

Book Suggestions:

Reading Suggestions: Best Books Set in Australia

August: A Book Set in North America

August takes us to North America.

While this continent is dominated by the United States, Mexico, and Canada, there are actually 23 countries total encompassing the regions of Central America and the Caribbean.

Book Suggestions:

September: A Classic Novel Set Abroad

In September, the goal is to read a classic novel set in a foreign country. While there’s no one definition for “classic literature” it typically refers to something that was published at least several decades ago but has staying power that can last for centuries or longer.

Book Suggestions:

October: A Fantasy Book Set Abroad

Fantasy is a fun genre to escape into. While many fantasy books are set in fantasy worlds, some of them are set in real places around the world too.

Book Suggestions:

November: A Book Set in South America

The last continent to read from is South America. While South America is quite large in size, it actually only has 12 countries, most of which are Spanish-speaking.

Book Suggestions:

Reading Suggestions: Exciting Books Set in South America

December: A Work of Translated Fiction

On to the last month of the year. Finally, for the month of December, your goal is to read a work of translated fiction by an international author from any country around the world.

Book Suggestions:

Travel Reading Challenge

That’s all for the Read Around the World Challenge prompts! Let me know in the comments below if you’re going to participate, and which month you’re most anticipating.

And please do just jump into the current month if you found this challenge after the start of the new year, don’t wait until next year to start.

Happy reading!

Read Around the World Reading Challenge

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I choose my own book?

Yes! Choose any book that meets the challenge prompt for that month. In fact, if you really enjoy a book, we’d love to hear about it.

Can I recommend a book for a future month?

We always love book recommendations! If there’s a book you think we should know about for one of the upcoming months, tell us about it. But please only recommend books that you’ve read.

Can I join the Challenge after January?

You can join our year-long reading challenge at any time. Simply jump into the current month, or start at the beginning. How you choose to participate is up to you, any month is a great time to start!

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  1. I found this challenge via The Master List Of Reading Challenges, but then I saw the comment about it being a perpetual challenge or if there will be new prompts for ’23. My question is, is this not the new challenge for ’23?

  2. Is this a perpetual challenge or will there be different themes for 2023? I really enjoyed this in 2022! Thank you!

    1. The plan is to make other reading challenges, but time is not on my side. If you have any suggestions for the monthly prompts or book suggestions, I’d be interested to hear them.

      Thank you, and I’m really happy to hear you enjoyed it.

  3. Sounds like a fun challenge. I’m in. Thanks for hosting.

  4. Nandita Khanna says:

    My January read is Antarctica: A Year at the Bottom of the World.

    1. Passport Wanderlust says:

      Awesome. Please do let us know how you like it!

  5. I am in too. Thanks for posting this.

    1. Passport Wanderlust says:

      Awesome, happy reading!!

    1. Passport Wanderlust says:


      Please keep us updated on how you get on. We would love to know what books you choose.

    1. Passport Wanderlust says:

      Awesome, happy reading!

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