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For the World Traveler

Throwback Thursday -Picture Books

I found the most delightfully illustrated travel log in the form of a picture book, Around the World in Eighty Days by John Burningham.

This post is for my son today. He left this morning on his own adventure (this first of many I hope) on an overnight field trip with his fifth grade class. I know he’ll only be gone a day and a half, but to me it might just feel like eighty days.

I’d like to say this post is also for dreamers who dream of adventures in far away places. This book may just inspire you to seek out those dreams.


The front of the book describes John Burningham’s picture book as “his most adventurous and delightful book yet.”

“On October 3rd, 1970, he set out from London’s Reform Club in the footsteps of Jules Verne’s Victorian hero Phileas Fogg. When he returned on a sunny December afternoon, just 80 days later, he had travelled 44,000 miles and visited 24 countries.”

His certainly was a grand adventure shared in the most wonderful way. “He took with him a large sketch-book, a small camera and a medium-sized tape recorder. On these he recorded his impressions, later transmuting them into pictures and amusing log-book notes.”

Wouldn’t it be lovely to take a sketch-book to keep record of the places you travel throughout the year -simple notes and sketches to look back on? I think in a way it’s what we all do with Instagram.

“To cover 24 countries in 96 pages is an almost impossible task. This is a book of hasty impressions gathered sometimes under adverse conditions. It records simply how the world looked to me in eighty days.”

-John Burningham

London, 1972

photo 3

You can see the amazing artwork from John Burningham’s other children’s book in a slideshow over at The Guardian.

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