10 Travel/Adventure Podcasts that Deserve a Listen

First of all, if you don’t listen to podcasts, consider starting. They’re great for commutes, workouts, mindless office jobs, and housework. You can find podcasts on just about any topic you enjoy; there’s one for everyone. I listen to about 25-30 different shows on a regular basis including most of the following. Looking for some travel inspiration and tips or just something to pass the time? Check these out!

1) Zero to Travel Podcast

The Zero to Travel Podcast is a wonderful place to start for aspiring travelers looking for ideas and inspiration. In it, Jason Moore interviews a ton of travelers to explore budget travel and different methods of becoming location independent. You can also glean information and ideas for trips. Just be careful to not get burnt out by listening to too many episodes.

2) The Amateur Travel Podcast

This podcast published by Chris Christensen is perfect if you’re looking to take one or two trips a year and want to get the most out of your destinations. The Amateur Travel Podcast probably won’t become a podcast you listen to regularly for entertainment, but it’s great for researching a location or gauging interest in a trip you’re considering that Chris has discussed.

3-4) Lore and Haunted Places podcasts.

Both of these shows are technically separate from travel, but I always find myself hoping to visit all the locations involved. Anyone interested in mysteries, ghosts, hauntings, dark tourism, monsters, etc. should try these podcasts. They may give you some insight on superstitions and history of places you would like to visit or inspire you to travel to see these haunted or mysterious destinations. Plus, they deliver enthralling narratives, especially Lore which is produced by professional novelist Aaron Mahnke.

5) Indie Travel Podcast

This one is entertaining, inspirational, and helpful for planning any future trips to the same places. Craig and Linda Martin are a dynamic husband and wife team who share their adventures and pragmatic travel tips to get you exploring too.

6) Outside Podcast

Outside Podcast by Outside Magazine has a couple of different series that podcast lovers should capitalize on. They began with the Science of Survival series where tales of harrowing escapes from impending death will keep you on the edge of your seat. Then they released the Outside Interview which is, well, obviously an interview format show featuring insane adventurers. Dispatches cover just about anything in the world of Outside. These shows consolidated onto one feed will bring a little excitement into your morning commute or your rainy day in the office.

7) Extra Pack of Peanuts Travel Podcast

Ever wanted to know how to travel for cheap and get more trips for less money? This podcast by Travis Sherry will tell you how and captivate your attention at the same time. Travis learned all the intricate ins and outs of traveling via airline miles and reward points, nearly eliminating the biggest travel expense of all: plane tickets. By flying virtually for free, he opened the world up for his family and him.

8) The Dirtbag Diaries

Produced by a company called Duct Tape Then Beer, this incredible show has been in my library since I first got hooked on podcasts. Feature episodes focus on some overarching theme within an adventure story or experience. “The Shorts” episodes offer great, inspiring stories in about 10 to 20 minutes. The Dirtbag Diaries is growing—not surprisingly—and every new team member brings another dimension to the gripping stories they tell. My recommendation: Start at the first episode and work your way to the present. It’s that good.

9) Find Dining Podcast

This podcast by Taste Trekkers is ideal for foodies’ whose primary travel goal is exquisite (or cultural) cuisine. It’s also great for regular travelers just looking for good eats. I don’t listen to episodes one after another for the entertainment, but I think it’s perfect for trip research. Just search for your next travel destination in the show archives and get ready to plan a tasty adventure.

10) Travel with Rick Steves

This is your basic travel and culture podcast. Rick Steves mostly interviews authors on various topics and places they’ve recently written about. This isn’t necessarily a low budget or off the beaten path podcast, but it can be a solid source for ideas, especially as a start. It focuses on food and culture but also hits on the outdoors, community, history, and more. I prefer selectively listening to this show based on where I’m hoping to go much like the Find Dining Podcast. Rick Steves can be a little cheesy, but it’s well worth a listen.

Portland and Seattle – Two Nights, Two Cities – Part 2

To review, Daniel, Peyton, and I had just left Portland after visiting my friend Richard and getting a taste for some local food. Our next stop: Seattle. We only had one night in the city and nothing planned. Thirty minutes of scouting google maps resulted in a stop at Swan Creek Park for some spontaneous mountain biking. These trails were the best built on the trip—flowy, fast, and downhill. It was bound to happen to one of us, but I never expected to look up from a GoPro to see Daniel get too forward on his bike at the bottom of a slope and then launch into a flip over his handlebars, body and bicycle at once flying through the air and then bouncing across the packed dirt. He was shook up but fine. We rode back to the truck after another couple laps and locked targets on Fremont.

Riley was one of the coolest dudes we met on the trip. A tall guy in his mid-twenties, tan with dark hair, Riley taught acting at a local school in Seattle. He also acted on Disney cruise ships for months at a time. Back up two days now: the guys and I are sitting around a campfire in Oregon trying to decide where to stay in Seattle. None of my Couchsurfing requests had been accepted, and we were leaning towards booking a cheap hotel outside the city. Then, while looking through hotels and hostels on my phone, I received the notification. Riley last minute agreed to host us two days before our arrival.

Now fast forward again. We just left Swan Creek Park and became stuck in miserable Seattle traffic at about 4:30 pm. Riley texted me along the lines of, “Hey do you guys like salmon.” I, of course, said we did. Riley said something like, “Great! I’m cooking dinner so don’t eat before you get here.” Anticipation and hunger made 20 mph traffic seem like standstill, and so what felt like 4 hours later we pulled onto Riley’s street where he met us all with a smile and a hug. He pointed out our parking spot and then showed us inside where Kenai, his new-ish and excitable pup, greeted us happily. Then, we all dug into the best meal we had on the entire trip. Riley made and had waiting seared salmon on a rice pilaf with sautéed veggies and peppers drizzled in a homemade hollandaise sauce. He apparently was a huge fan of Food Network, and by default, so were we.

Still trying to understand how the food was so delicious, we set off to see Fremont on foot, led by our host. Riley took us around Gas Works Park (formerly the Seattle Gas Light Company gasification plant), under the bridge with the Fremont Troll, and past the Lenin statue. We ended that night at a barcade (Bar/Arcade) called Add a Ball that housed a ton of vintage games. The low-lit, grungy atmosphere seemed to draw a crowd of nerds and bedraggled misfits who blended perfectly with the surroundings. They seemed at home and welcomed us, too, into their humble abode.

I’ve said it before, but I believe everyone should at some point try Couchsurfing, at least once. It’s an amazing way to experience a city because it’s just like visiting your friend who has lived there long enough to become a local. They know where to go, when to go there, and what’s worth doing. My two hosts have been extremely kind, welcoming, and accommodating. But “host” isn’t a great word for them because after fifteen minutes we’re all friends. You can chat about absolutely nothing, swap travel stories, learn about each other’s background, engage in deep and meaningful conversations, or just hangout rather quietly. No matter what, you will leave with a new friend and a new perspective.

The next morning Riley cooked for everyone again: fluffy pancakes, crispy bacon, squared potatoes. Again, amazing food. We drove to REI, the one where it all began, to pick up some last minute supplies. Wanting a quick lunch and apparently missing the south, we settled on picking up Popeye’s chicken, which we ate in a funeral home parking lot. Yes, a funeral home parking lot. Next to a cemetery. The Cemetery where sits the Jimi Hendrix memorial. Stuffed with fried chicken, we walked over and paid our respects to the legend. Then, slightly anxious but thoroughly overjoyed, we prepared for our flight. The vast wilds of Denali awaited.