Playlist – Top 20 Travel Songs for Wanderlusters

If there’s one thing I can’t go without in my travels, and actually in my life, is music.  I went through the pop phase, then rock, metal, alternative, indie… Nowadays, a little bit wiser, I listen to a little bit of everything. If the music’s good it goes in my playlist. And you know how a good soundtrack can make a complete diference in a movie? Well, for me, the same happens in travels. A long bus, train or plain ride wouldn’t be the same without the songs that usually make me travel while I’m at home. I usually spend a few hours working on the music selection I’ll upload to my iPhone, before I go on a trip. So I’ve decided to share here at Joland a playlist of 20 travel songs. Below, you’ll find a description and Youtube video for each one of them, and in the end a full playlist at Spotify.

Which ones would you add to the list? Leave your comments below!

1| “The Passenger” – Iggy Pop

A total classic and, as it should be, number 1 in this travel songs playlist. “I am a passenger and I ride and I ride…”. There’s no way of listening to this music and not feel a sudden urge to leave with no return date.

2| “Riders on the Storm” – The Doors

Another timeless classic. What a song. Try listening to it on a bus or train ride with the rain hitting your window. Be prepared to immediately enter another dimension.

3| “Hopeless Wanderer” – Mumford & Sons

This is one of those travel songs that gets me immediately thinking about my next destination. “Don’t let your heart grow cold” they say. I couldn’t agree more.

4| “Ramble on” – Led Zepellin

With lyrics inspired by the trilogy “Lord of the rings” by J.R.R. Tolkien, this is definitely one of the greatest classics ever. The ring here is replaced for the search of love all over the world. It talks about freedom and the eternal search for happiness. What could you want more in life? 😉

5| “Mausam” – Nitin Sawhney

India is a country that has been fascinating me for too long. And Nitin Sawhney’s songs, especially the ones from the “Beyond Skin” album, take me there every time I listen to them. “Mausam” talks about the changes that happen in life throughout time. It talks about sadness, happiness and the balance that should exist between them.

6| “Ticket to Ride” – The Beatles

This song was always part of my travel songs’ playlist. The obvious interpretation of this music’s lyrics is related to travelling. But actually, the origin of the lyrics is based on a few theories, including that it was written based on the days the band spent at the Red Light District in Hamburg, Germany. Regardless of its origin, we can all agree that it’s a great song, right?

7| “Roam” – B52’s

This song’s lyrics says it all: “Fly the skies, see the seas, run around all the continents. Go ahead, roam without a care.”

8| “Wonderlust King” – Gogol Bordello

Few songs have such travel related lyrics as Gogol Bordello’s “Wonderlust King”. It talks about enjoying new experiences and living life to the fullest. “But I’m a wonderlust king. I stay on the run, let me out, let me be gone

9| “Fast Car” – Tracy Chapman

The feeling of freedom you get when you get in your car and drive with no destination in mind. Of course this song had to be included in this travel songs’ playlist.

10| “The Golden Age” – Beck

Put your hands on the wheel. Let the golden age begin, let the window down, feel the moonlight on your skin. Let the desert wind cool your aching head. Let the weight of the world drift away instead.”. And what about that guitar in the beginning…? That’s it, right? 🙂

11| “The Sea” – Morcheeba

Travel far away to a beach destination and while you look into the horizon, listen to this song. Then tell me if it doesn’t make sense to include it in a travel songs’ playlist. “I left my soul there, down by the sea. I lost control here, living free.

12| “I drove all night” – Cindy Lauper

An 80’s classic, from the great Cindy Lauper. Perfect for road trips!

13| “Here I go again” – White Snake

This song gets anyone singing its chorus passionately, don’t pretend it doesn’t! The ultimate lonely traveller song.

14| “Hard Sun” – Eddie Vedder

Who hasn’t dreamt of being Cristopher McCandless at least once while watching the movie “Into the Wild“? The idea of leaving everything behind and being entirely free is something that inevitably messes with us. And every time I listen to this song, from the movie’s soundtrack, there’s something inside me that starts to boil and a smile that automatically gets drawn on my face.

15| “I’ve been everywhere” – Johnny Cash

Crossed the desert’s bare, man. I’ve breathed the mountain air, man. Of travel I’ve had my share, man. I’ve been everywhere.”. The great Johnny Cash, ladies and gentlemen.

16| “Have love, will travel” – The Black Keys

An original song by the 50’s punk-rockers, The Sonics, interpreted by The Black Keys. A classic amongst the travel songs world.

17| “Postcards from Italy” – Beirut

A song about memories of happy times. Hearing it while travelling makes me want to enjoy the moment even more.

18| “Road Trippin” – Red Hot Chilli Peppers

Could there be a more appropriate song than this one to start a road trip? The answer is no. It’s impossible. “Road trippin’ with my two favorite allies. Fully loaded we got snacks and supplies. It’s time to leave this town, It’s time to steal away. Let’s go get lost anywhere in the U.S.A.

19| “Time to move on” – Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers

Do you have an allergy to routines and stagnation? Join the club and put this song on. It makes sense, doesn’t it? “What lies ahead, I have no way of knowing. But under my feet, baby, grass is growing. It’s time to move on, it’s time to get going

20| “Sweet Disposition” – Temper Trap

Is there a better feeling than the one of complete freedom while looking at your life like a blank book? At least that’s how I feel when I travel. And this song is the perfect soundtrack for those moments.

Playlist Spotify

And here is the complete playlist, on Spotify. I’ll continue to update it, so if you like it, just add it to your favorite playlists.


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