6 great audiobooks for your next bikepacking trip
Load up your bike, put your earphones in, and hit the road — audiobooks are the perfect companion for a bikepacking vacation. Read on for a checklist of bikepacking must-haves.
8 min read
Flexible, scenic, and sustainable: Bikepacking is the perfect way to spend a vacation. Every day, you’ll get a great workout, plenty of fresh air, and a chance to clear your head. But admittedly, all that time on the path can get boring, which is why an audiobook is the perfect cycling companion. Unlike loud music, which isn’t particularly safe when riding in traffic, audiobooks give you hours of listening pleasure while keeping you tuned into your surroundings. And with practical apps like BookBeat, you get access to over 800,000 audiobooks. Listen to exciting stories, learn new things, and get inspired — all on two wheels!
Looking for inspiration on what to listen to on your next bike trip? We’ve got some tips for you. But before we dive too deep, let’s explore what the wonderful world of bikepacking has to offer, and what you’ll need to maximize your fun.
What is bikepacking?
Bikepacking originated as a type of self-supported bike racing done over the course of multiple days. As the name suggests, bikepacking means that you need to travel with all of your luggage attached to your bike. By evenly distributing the weight you’re carrying, you can bike more speedily and efficiently.
Of course, bikepacking doesn’t need to be competitive. On the contrary: You can take things at your own tempo, enjoy the scenery, and regain your sense of balance rather than racing for gold. Whether you want to take a bike tour across Germany or through the whole European continent, it’s important to not only choose the right bike, but to pack efficiently and effectively. Let’s take a look at how to do this.
The essential packing list for your bikepacking trip
If you’re a minimalist who wants to travel light, then you’re a great candidate for bikepacking. One thing to keep in mind: The less you bring, the better! From your frame to your saddle, your bike only has so much space, and the weight you’re carrying makes a big difference when it comes to how quickly and comfortably you can ride. So, it’s worthwhile to think carefully about what you bring along. Of course, it also depends on how long your trip will last, and whether you’ll be camping or looking for accommodation. Here’s a rough list of what you’ll need.
- Bike repair kit and spare parts
- Tools (pocket knife or multi-tool, screwdriver, bottle opener, etc.)
- Chain oil
- Mini air pump
- Helmet (some even come with lights and Bluetooth speakers)
- Rechargeable LED headlamp
- Batteries and charging cables
- Rain jacket and pants
- Light down jacket or vest
- Change of clothes and underwear (make sure to choose light, breathable fabrics that dry quickly)
- Tennis shoes and flip flops
- Bike gloves
- Headphones (ideally, in-ear with Bluetooth and a case, with active noise-canceling — perfect for audiobooks!)
Personal care products
- Toilet paper
- Toothpaste, toothbrush
- Microfiber towel
- Bug spray
- Magnesium (for muscle cramps)
- First-aid kit
- Ointment for wounds
- Small tent (it’s worth getting a special bikepacking tent — these weigh less than 1 kg)
- Sleeping bag
- Sleeping pad
- Camping stove, gas cartridge, lighter
- Pan, cup, aluminum bowl
- Camping silverware
- Snacks (energy bars or protein bars)
- Water and refillable water bottle
- Trash bag and ziploc bags
- Insurance card (don’t forget your travel insurance!)
- Cash (especially in countries where card payments aren’t common)
- debit or credit card
Still have some room? There are tons of extra gadgets that you can get for your bikepacking trip, from smartphone holders to outdoor power banks!
Our top 6 audiobook tips for your trips
Finished packing? Then it’s time to get your ears perked up for your upcoming trip. When it comes to audiobooks that are perfect for bikepacking, we’ve got two novels, two non-fiction books, and two crime stories (some from our N26 favorites list), especially selected for the season and type of travel. Let’s go!
While her twin sister Ami leads a charmed life, nothing ever seems to work out for Olive Torres. To make matters worse, Olive is forced to spend Ami’s wedding day in Hawaii with Ethan, her arch nemesis. But when the entire wedding party gets food poisoning, the pair have the chance to moonlight as newlyweds and spend 10 days in paradise. This “hilarious and touching” romance from Christina Lauren is a funny, charming, uplifting listen for anyone who has struggled to find happiness. Named a must-read by Today, US Weekly, and more, it's sure to help you pass your bikepacking hours in a good mood.
2. World Travel — Anthony Bourdain and Laurie Woolever
Whether by bike or by plane, if travel is your thing, this book will spark your wanderlust. Food writer and television host Anthony Bourdain spent much of his life on the road, exploring hidden pockets of every corner of the globe. In World Travel, he consolidates his learnings into a fun, compact travel guide to some of his most-loved destinations. With tips on where to go, what to eat, and how to get around, this audio book is perfect for the adventurer in all of us. Use it as inspiration for your next bikepacking trip, or fodder for the dream vacation you’d like to save up for next.
3. One of the Girls — Lucy Clarke
When six friends arrive on a Greek island for a weekend bachelorette trip, each is ready for a holiday. But each woman is harboring a secret, and one is determined to sabotage Lexi’s wedding and ensure that one wedding party member never leaves the island alive. This bracing psychological thriller from bestselling writer Lucy Clarke is packed with suspenseful twists and turns set against the stunning isles of Greece. So, whether you’re biking through Brandenburg or Bosnia, “One of the Girls” will give you plenty of scenic suspense on your ride.
4. A Little Life — Hanya Yanagihara
If you’re setting out on an epic bike journey, this harrowing bestseller will keep you on the edge of your bike seat. Yanagihara’s story follows four college friends trying to forge their way through life’s challenges in New York CIty. At the center of their clique is Jude, a talented litigator with a secret, horrifying past that he struggles to overcome. Named Best Fiction Book of the Year by the British Book Awards and shortlisted for the Booker Prize, “A Little Life” is not a little book — but it’s one that will stick with you for a long, long time. And, at 32 hours running time, you’ll have plenty of listening time to keep your pedals moving.
Parenting is hard — but does modern society make it harder than it needs to be? Dr. Michaeleen Doucleff poses this question in “Hunt, Gather, Parent,” a fascinating study into what we can learn from Indigenous cultures about parenting. With 3-year-old daughter in tow, Doucless lives with and learns from Maya, Inuit, and Hadzabe communities, exploring how to parent with more patience, resilience, and cooperation. At just over 11 hours listening time, this is the perfect book to accompany you on a family bike journey.
6. After That Night — Karin Slaughter
If you love mystery thrillers, then this suspenseful read from Karin Slaughter is for you. Follow her famed investigator Will Trent and his savvy teammate Sara Linton as they try to solve a crime uncannily similar to a past trauma Linton has struggled to overcome. But the past can’t stay buried forever — will the truth come out at last? Slaughter’s 11th book in the Will Trent series, “After That Night” is an enthralling companion for any bikepacking adventure. Listen with friends to solve the mystery as a team, or follow on the detectives’ journey solo — just make sure to turn it off before dark!
N26 x BookBeat — Listen to 60 hours of audiobooks for free
These six audiobooks — and over 800,000 more — are all available on BookBeat. With the BookBeat app, you can discover new books or listen to your favorite titles, both on- and offline. Subscription plans are based on your listening preferences: It’s just €9.99 per month for 25 hours of listening time, or bump up to 100 hours for €16.99 per month. There’s also a 45-day trial subscription, where you can listen to all audiobooks for free. And as an N26 customer, you profit even more.
When you use our BookBeat rebate code, you’ll get access to 60 hours of free audiobooks for 70 days. If you want to subscribe, you’ll get a one-time bonus of 20% off your membership for 60 days. To benefit from this offer, simply follow these steps:
- Open your N26 app and tap ‘Explore.’
- Head to ‘Partner offers’ and tap ‘BookBeat’ to copy the rebate code.
- Open your BookBeat account and paste in your code at checkout.
- Download your BookBeat app and choose from over 800,000 titles for your next bikepacking trip!
Oh, and don’t worry — you can cancel or change your subscription plan at any time.
Your money at N26
Looking to streamline things before your bikepacking trip? Then look no further than a 100% mobile bank account from N26. With our flexible accounts, you can easily withdraw cash on your journey — while still keeping a pulse on your finances. Our N26 You travel account comes with unlimited free withdrawals anywhere in the world and travel insurance for when things don’t go according to plan. Plus, you’ll get an ultra-light debit Mastercard in one of four sleek colors — perfect for contactless payments. Or, use your virtual card to pay right from your smartphone. Don’t wait another minute — compare accounts here and start loving your bank.
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