If you have a summer road trip planned for your family, grab an audiobook from this list to make the car ride something your kids love! From quicker books for short trips, to longer books that will take you a long car ride to complete, your kids will get lost in these stories along the drive.
I was excited to partner with Audible, one of my favorite resources for audiobooks and a go to for road trips to sponsor this post!
Back before I had kids I was in sales at my company and had a pretty large territory. With that came countless hours behind the wheel. This was before the days of ipods, podcasts, and just barely into satellite radio which I did not have, so after the first few months on the job when my friends stopped answering the phone as I did my call rotation for entertainment on my drives, I stumbled upon audiobooks at a gas station stop.
I bought my first one, popped it in and hit the road again. This was a WHERE HAVE YOU BEEN ALL MY LIFE moment! Boom. Instant addiction. Listening to a book while I was driving made the time fly by and sometimes even after driving many hours in the car, I would reach my destination and still sit in the car to finish listening because I was so wrapped up in the plot. Crazy book lady. I know!
Fast forward a few more years than I would like to admit and we now have 3 kids and a very different lifestyle than those dual income no kids days. One thing stayed the same though, even with kids, we still probably log a lot more hours in the car than many. Between trips, vacations, and frequent moves we have driven across the entire country 4 times in the past 6 years and partially across it countless times. With kids in tow of course! And somehow my sanity is still in tact (although those that know me might actually question that at times!)
We are lucky that we live in the age of technology where we can entertain our kids more easily in the car than when I was young and just got to stare out the window and look for cows. Even with the technology though, when you are going to be spending such a long time in the car, I hate for my kids to go into complete zombie mode looking at a screen for so long. What is amazing though is that just about any and every book you can imagine is now available in audio format and can be found on Audible.
A few reasons why I love audiobooks for road trips with kids:
- We can enjoy it as a family together
- Gives kids another medium to learn to love books
- Makes the time go by super fast!
- We can have real meaningful discussions about things that happen in the book, either by pausing the audio while listening or when we stop for breaks. This is one of my absolute favorite ways to get into great conversation with the kids!
- Great entertainment for kids that have a tendency to get car sick
- Practices skills on following a storyline and attention to detail
- Tons of options on length, genre, etc. You can easily match the amount of time you will be in the car, and even find a book that is complimentary to your destination.
It is so fun to watch your kids get really into a storyline. They talk about it, ask questions, make predictions and can’t wait to get back into the car to hear more. My mom heart just about bursts when I can see them love books without me pushing it down their throat.
Best Audiobooks For A Road Trip with Kids
I put together a list of books that we have loved using with the kids and a few that are on our list for our travels this summer. If you aren’t familiar with audiobooks a great way to get started is Audible. You can even grab a free 30 day trial here to get a free book and see how you like it (or how quickly you get addicted!) Our first read this summer will be Peter Pan!
Below, I have broken the books down into categories and have listed the book name, author, link to find it, and how long it runs. There are quite a variety lengths so if you are just going to Grandma’s house a couple of hours down the road you can pick a short book, or if your family is doing a multi-state trek then there are some much longer books to get lost in. I even have several series that could take you days to complete!
Classic Audiobooks for Kids
- Peter Pan by J.M. Barrie (Run time: 4hr 51min) – I love this pick because it is so great for boys AND girls and timeless for younger or older kids, teens or adults! My daughter loves Tinker Bell and my son gets really into adventure and will love the fast paced tale, especially since there are pirates!
- The Adventure Collection by Jonathan Swift, Jack London, Rudyard Kipling, Howard Pyle, Robert Louis Stevenson (Run time: 40hr 21min) – Not only will this one book be long enough for a seriously long road trip, it is filled with some of the most iconic tales of adventure. It includes:
- Treasure Island
- The Jungle Book
- Gulliver’s Travels
- White Fang
- The Merry Adventures of Robin
- Charlie and the Chocolate Factory by Roald Dahl (Run time: 3hr 18min) – This one is perfect for a shorter road trip since the run time is just over three hours. It is light hearted and fun but has a good message to remember. What kid wouldn’t love to get lost in an adventure in a chocolate factory?!
- Narnia by C.S. Lewis (Run time: 15 hr 8 min) – For anyone who loves the tales of Narnia and wants to enjoy them with the family this one is for you! The tales spring to life in these spellbinding full-cast BBC dramatizations with a full cast of characters. Each of the tales are included:
- The Magician’s Nephew
- The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe
- The Horse and His Boy
- Prince Caspian
- The Voyage of the Dawn Treader
- The Silver Chair
- The Last Battle
- Pippi Longstocking by Astrid Lindgren (Run time: 2hr 34 min) – I was so excited to add this tale to the list as it was probably my all time favorite growing up. It is perfect for kids who love the unexpected!
- James and the Giant Peach by Roald Dahl (Run time: 3 hr 18 min) – Part magic and part adventure, this great book is a right of passage for growing up!
- Charlotte’s Web by E.B. White (Run time: 3 hr 29 min) – This is one of the most classic children’s stories and a perfect tale for summer! This one is especially good if you have younger kids in the car.
Harry Potter Audiobooks
Harry Potter by J.K. Rowling is the perfect story for the whole family to enjoy on a long road trip. If you have never read Harry Potter, then it is definitely the time to start! I don’t know anyone who hasn’t fallen in love with these books. The tales will have you hanging on every word and might even make you enjoy the time on the road more than the vacation itself! They can be a touch scary for younger kids if they are sensitive but personally both my 3 and 6 year old love them! I have listed the books in order for you here:
- Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone (Run time: 8 hr 33 min)
- Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (Run time: 9 hr 24 min)
- Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (Run time: 12 hr 15 min)
- Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (Run time: 21 hr 12 min)
- Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (Run time: 27 hr 2 min)
- Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince (Run time: 18 hr 55 min)
- Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (Run time: 21 hr 36 min)
Summer Fun Audiobooks
- Fudge Series by Judy Blume – The characters in these books are ones that kids just fall in love with! Many of the plots take place over the summer and adventures they have!
- The Ramona Quimby Collection by Beverly Cleary (Run time: 19 hr) – This collection includes all of the books about the adventures of Ramona Quimby and the troubles she gets in!
- Beezus and Ramona
- Ramona the Pest
- Ramona the Brave
- Ramona and Her Father
- Ramona and Her Mother
- Ramona Quimby, Age 8
- Ramona Forever
- Ramona’s World
- Matilda by Roald Dahl (Run time: 4hr 18 min) – This is a story about school but so much fun your kids will love to spend their summer days listening to it!
How to Train Your Dragon Audiobooks
How to Train Your Dragon Series by Cressida Cowell – If you have a car full of boys (or dragon loving girls!) this book series will no doubt be the way to go! My son absolutely loves them and can’t ever get enough of the tales of Hiccup Horrendous Haddock III.
- How to Train Your Dragon (Run time: 3 hr 30 min)
- How to Be A Pirate (Run time: 2 hr 54 min)
- How to Speak Dragonese (Run time: 3 hr 19 min)
- How to Cheat A Dragon’s Curse (Run time: 3 hr 30 min)
- How to Twist A Dragon’s Tale (Run time: 3 hr 50 min)
- A Hero’s Guide to Deadly Dragons (Run time: 2 hr 40 min)
- How to Ride A Dragon’s Storm (Run time: 3 hr 47 min)
- How to Break A Dragon’s Heart (Run time: 4 hr 38 min)
- How to Steal A Dragon’s Sword (Run time: 5 hr 1 min)
- How to Seize A Dragon’s Jewel (Run time: 5 hr 30 min)
- How to Betray A Dragon’s Hero (Run time: 5 hr 24 min)
- How to Fight a Dragon’s Fury (Run time: 3 hr 30 min)
More Great Road Trip Audiobooks
This last group of books is a smattering of highly recommended and fun books for kids. One thing I have found for sure is that kids can never get enough of magic and fantasy and when they get sucked into a book they learn to love to read!
- Wonder by R. J. Palacio (Run time: 8 hr 6 min)
- The League of Beastly Dreadfuls by Holly Grant (Run time: 6 hr 40 min)
- The Dastardly Deed: The League of Beastly Dreadfuls by Holly Grant (Run time:7 hr 25 min)
- Pip Bartlett’s Guide to Magical Creatures by Jackson Pearce, Maggie Stiefvater (Run time: 4 hr 11 min)
- Mrs. Piggle Wiggle by Betty MacDonald (Run time: 2 hr 37 min) – Perfect for little ones!
Well, this list should certainly keep your road trip full and the kids entertained! If you have a favorite audiobook your kids love, please leave me a note in the comments below! I would love to hear it!
This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Audible. The opinions and text are all mine.