Slow Travel Quotes (With Pictures)

Looking for some inspiration to take it slow on your next trip? Or maybe you need some new caption ideas! Here are 40+ quotes to inspire and share, all about Slow Travel adventure.

I labored over each and every one so that you can save the ones you like in a picture format!

Slow travel is all about enjoying the journey and getting deeper into the culture of a place, so I tried to pick mostly quotes that reflect this.

Short Travel Quotes

These travel and slow living quotes are short but sweet!

“It doesn’t matter where you’re going, it’s who you have beside you.” – Anonymous

A young couple sit on the bow of a wooden boat in a bay in Thailand surrounded by rocky cliffs. Quote reads "It doesn't matter where you're going, it's who you have beside you." - Anonymous

“A good traveller has no fixed plans and is not intent on arriving.” – Lao Tzu

A puffball dandelion in focus, with a young girl in a pink dress faded in the background. Quote reads "A good traveler has no fixed plans and is not intent on arriving." - Lao Tzu

“Wherever you are, be all there.” – Jim Elliott

A totem pole in a garden in front of some leafy trees. Quote reads "Wherever you are, be all there." - Jim Elliott

“The world is a book, and those who do not travel read only a page.” – Louis Charles Fougeret de Monbron

This has got to be one of the best known travel quotes out there, and is widely credited to Saint Augustine.

So imagine my surprise when I was fact checking and I found that isn’t the right credit at all!

Apparently it is paraphrased from a french book, and the actual quote is loosely translated as:

“The universe is a sort of book, whose first page one has read when one has seen only one’s own country.”

So pretty close actually. Someone summarized it well over the years and made it into plain English.

The post I was reading elaborates on the fact that Saint Augustine didn’t appear to like travel at all, so if you’re interested here is the article of 7 fake travel quotes that I found!

Anyways, still a great quote, I credited the French author Louis Charles Fougeret de Monbron.

Back to the list!

A man in a trench coat pushes a stroller down a misty, leaf covered alley in Sintra Portugal. A mossy wall sits on the left and huge mossy rocks to the right. Quote reads "The world is a book, and those who do not travel read only a page." - Louis Charles Fougeret de Monbron

“Live simply, so that others may simply live.” – Mahatma Gandhi

Not exactly a travel quote, but I like this one because it makes me think of slow and sustainable travel.

When we visit a destination and spend time there, living simply, we support locals and their economy so that they can earn a living.

Especially when we are travelling in poorer countries, this quote can be taken quite literally. Some areas depend on tourism for survival, and it’s higher stakes if they don’t make any money.

A grizzly bear on a grassy field in front of a forest under a bright blue sky at sunset. Quote reads "Live simply, so that others may simply live." - Mahatma Gandhi

We started slow travelling because it suited us better and we don’t like busy schedules or crowds.

Now that I’ve spent more time with it, I realize how damaging fast travel can be to a local economy.

When we rush around and spend no more than a day in any given place, we put a strain on the infrastructure and wear down their attractions, but we don’t support local beyond an entrance fee or transit.

I’m not trying to make anyone feel bad, or take the fun out of travel, I really do think there’s a balance, but it’s crazy how many benefits there are to taking it slow!


“Not all who wander all lost.” – J.R.R. Tolkien

Arguably THE best known travel quote, but it’s a good one, so here we are!

I actually had no idea it was from the Lord of the Rings.

Sulphur gates, Alberta. Mountains sit in the background behind an evergreen and leafy forest, which stops at some rocky cliffs above a river. Large rocks sit in the foreground on the left side. Quote reads "Not all who wander are lost." J R R Tolkien

“I don’t know where I am going, but I am on my way.” – Voltaire

A blue green pool beside a rocky ledge in the forest. Quote reads "I don't know where I am going, but I am on my way." - Voltaire

“The journey is the reward.” – Chineste proverb, Steve Jobs, or Walter Isaacson

This quote is widely credited to Steve Jobs on Pinterest, but I also found sources crediting Walter Isaacson, and others citing “Chinese proverb.”

From what I could tell, a Taoist saying would predate both Steve Jobs and someone named Walter, so I went with “Chinese proverb.”

I mean, I have no doubt that Steve Jobs said it at some point, but probably as a quote.

A brook winds through a cedar forest gathering brown leaves and pouring over rocks. Quote reads "The journey is the reward." Chinese Proverb

“Because when you stop and look around, this life is pretty amazing.” – Dr. Seuss

The turquoise canoe shack boarded up for the winter in Emerald Lake BC. The forest wraps around the cabin and the mountains are in the background above a sliver of the lake. Quote reads "Because when you stop and look around, this life is pretty amazing." - Dr. Seuss

“Life is a journey, not a destination.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

True dat, Ralph.

A frozen river in a rocky canyon with mountains in the distance. Quote reads "Life is a journey, not a destination." - Ralph Waldo Emerson

“We travel, not to escape life, but for life not to escape us.” – Unknown

Natural bridge near Field BC. A stone bridge in the Canadian Rockies with a blue green river flowing through it.  Quote on top reads "We travel, not to escape life, but for life not to escape us." - Unknown

“You can’t do anything about the length of your life, but you can do something about it’s width and depth.” – H.L. Mencken

I’m not 100% convinced that I even like this quote, because I already tend to be very conscious of my mortality, but it is a wise one.

The Ocean bubbles on a beach as a long wave recedes. The sun shine bright on the water, and  a large rock pokes out not far off. The sky is cloudy, but warm. Quote reads "You can't do anything about the length of your life, but you can do something about it's width and depth." - H.L. Mencken

“It is better to travel well than to arrive.” – Buddha or Robert Louis Stevenson

This is one of the first one’s that I fact-checked, because it just doesn’t sound like something that Buddha would trouble himself with.

I was correct.

Also, today I learned that there is an entire site dedicated to fake Buddha quotes!

Apparently the quote is paraphrased from Robert Louis Stevenson who wrote:

“To travel hopefully is a better thing than to arrive.”

So this is a modernized version, widely embraced by the internet.

A light blue green river runs through some rocks with a forest around it. Rocky Mountains hide in some low cloud in the background. Quote reads "It is better to travel well than to arrive." - Robert Louis Stevenson

“The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but having new eyes.” – Marcel Proust

Mountains sit in the background behind an evergreen and leafy forest, which stops at some rocky cliffs above a river. Large rocks sit in the foreground on the left side. Quote reads "The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but having new eyes." - Marcel Proust

“The only people who ever get anyplace interesting are the people who get lost.” Henry David Thoreau

A broken dock covered in snow juts out into the blue green waters of Emerald Lake BC. A forested Mountain sits directly across, with it's rocky top barely peaking out. Quote reads "The only people who ever get anyplace interesting are the people who get lost." Henry David Thoreau

“All journeys have secret destinations of which the traveler is unaware.” – Martin Buber

A quiet forest of ancient cedars with a wet boardwalk running through it. Quote reads "All journeys have secret destinations of which the traveler is unaware." - Martin Buber

“The best things in life aren’t things.” – Art Buchwald

I love, love, love this quote!

While it isn’t travel specific it definitely makes me think of minimalism and embracing our time and experiences.

For example, I think one of the best things in life is travel!

A purple flower field in framed by dark pine trees in Sun Peaks, BC. Quote reads "the best things in life aren't things." Art Buchwald

“There is only today, with holes in our pockets, with time spilling out. We cannot keep it for tomorrow.” – Erin Loechner

This one makes me sad, but it’s eloquent…so there’s that.

A purple flower field in front of dark pine trees in Sun Peaks, BC. Quote reads "There is only today, with holes in our pockets, with time spilling out. We cannot keep it for tomorrow." - Erin Loechner

Nature does not hurry, yet everything is accomplished.” – Lao Tzu

Big tropical looking leaves with dew on them. Quote reads "Nature does not hurry, and yet everything is accomplished." - Lao Tzu

“Let’s find some beautiful place to get lost.” – Unknown

An almost cartoonish dome-topped mushroom stands tall in the grass with its red cap. Blurry in the distance are some evergreen trees in front of some mountains. Quote reads "Let's find some beautiful place to get lost." - Unknown

“Adopt the pace of nature. Her secret is patience.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

A lush green forest with a rocky brook running through it. Quote reads "Adopt the pace of nature. Her secret is patience." - Ralph Waldo Emerson

“A ship in harbour is safe, but that’s not what ships are for.” – William Shedd

I discovered this quote while I was working on this post, and it’s stored in my heart forever now!

A round hole in some cedar trees, reveals a view out to a harbour. Quote reads "A ship in harbour is safe, but that's not what ships are for." - William Shedd

“Home is not just the place where you happen to be born, it’s the place where you become yourself.” – Pico Iyer

This quote makes me think of Bulgaria.

We adopted our daughter from Bulgaria and therefore I officially became a Mom there (and started the hardest journey of my life!)

So in a way, it’s the place I became this person, and it honestly does feel like I’m connected to that it.

Three Valley Gap BC. The mist hangs low over the lake between two forested mountains. The red roof of a faraway hotel is just visible on the far shore. Quote reads "Home is not just the place where you happen to be born, it's the place where you become yourself." - Pico Iyer

Slow Travel Quotes to Inspire

“I was rich, if not in money, in sunny hours and summer days, and spent them lavishly; nor do I regret that I did not waste more of them in the workshop or the teacher’s desk.” – Henry David Thoreau

This quote just would NOT fit eloquently onto a small photo like this, so I cropped it to my favourite part.

Very often travelling is a choice between having more money or seeing more of the world. I would rather be rich in sunny hours and summer days.

A view of the town of Merritt BC from the distance. Dried grasses lead from the foreground to the mountains, where the town is nestled at the foot. Quote reads "I was rich, if not in money, in sunny hours and summer days, and spent them lavishly; nor do I regret that I did not waste more of them in the workshop or the teacher's desk." - Henry David Thoreau

“We’re so caught up in trying to do everything, experience all the essential things, not miss out on anything important…Life is better when we don’t try to do everything. Learn to enjoy the slice of life you experience, and life turns out to be wonderful.” – Leo Babauta

Quote over a forest background reads "We're so caught up in trying to do everything, experience all the essential things, not miss out on anything important...Life is better when we don't try to do everything. Learn to enjoy the slice of life you experience, and life turns out to be wonderful." - Leo Babauta

“Material goods rarely alter our levels of happiness, unlike emotional experience. Having can never replace being.” – Ilsa Crawford

To me this is a perfect slow travel (and minimalism) quote.

You can collect all the check marks you want, and take pictures of all the things, but that can’t replace truly experiencing somewhere.

A smoky day at Sun Peaks BC. The sun shines orange in the sky above the chalet inspired buildings. Quote reads "Material goods rarely alter our levels of happiness, unlike emotional experience. Having can never replace being." - Ilsa Crawford

“The difference between a tourist and a traveller is that a tourist doesn’t know where he’s been, and a traveller doesn’t know where he’s going.” – unknown

This travel quote is as relevant as it gets for slow travel!

We all know that feeling of visiting a place and allowing too little time for it. You end up rushing around from place to place, taking a few photos, and moving on.

When it’s all over, you don’t remember much, and you didn’t learn much about the places that you visited.

“…a tourist doesn’t know where [they’ve] been.”

Ouch!

“A traveller doesn’t know where [they’re] going.”

Allowing a place to take you on a journey is what makes us travellers.

A building at Buchart Gardens in BC. A quiet hallway with mossy concrete stairs and a green ceiling. Lots of plants line the way. Quote reads "The difference between a tourist and a traveler is that a tourist doesn't know where he's been, and a traveler doesn't know where he's going." - unknown

“A journey is a person in itself; no two are alike. And all plans, safeguards, policing, and coercion are fruitless. We find that after years of struggle that we do not take a trip; a trip takes us.” – John Steinback

A woman with her hood pulled up, stands beside Emerald Lake in the Winter. Snowy mountains stand in the background. The lake is not yet frozen. Quote reads "A journey is a person in itself; no two are alike. And all plans, safeguards, policing, and coercion are fruitless. We find that after years of struggle that we do not take a trip; a trip takes us." - John Steinback

“Two roads diverged in a wood and I – I took the one less travelled by, and that has made all the difference.” – Robert Frost

A classic road-less-travelled quote.

Shallow stone steps in the forest with a black railing to the left. Quote reads "Two roads diverged in a wood and I - I took the one less travelled by, and that has made all the difference." - Robert Frost

“I see my path, but I don’t know where it leads. Not knowing where I’m going is what inspires me to travel it.” – Rosalia de Castro

Isn’t this why we all travel? We might know some of the things that we plan to see and do, but if we knew it all by staying home, then we wouldn’t leave.

The not knowing, is what inspires us to go out and discover for ourselves, what we couldn’t possibly experience from home.

A woman and daughter walk on a frozen river through a tree-lined canyon. Quote on top reads "I see my path, but I don't know where it leads. Not knowing where I'm going is what inspires me to travel it." - Rosalia de Castro

“To awaken quite alone in a strange town is one of the pleasantest sensations in the world.” – Freya Stark

A nice little shout out for solo travel.

The quiet city of Lagos Portugal early in the morning. Old European buildings line the left side of a cobbled street. An orange tree sits on the right side, shading a restaurant terrace. Quote on top reads "To awaken quite alone in a strange town is one of the pleasantest sensations in the world." - Freya Stark

“Ask a bird how to fly, and it might tell you to remove the weight from your wings.” – Erin Loechner

Not exactly a travel quote, but I think it relates well. A lot of people say that they wish they could travel more but it won’t work because of xyz.

I think if you work backwards from the goal, and remove the weight from your wings (the obstacles,) you can find ways to make it work.

Sulphur Gates in Alberta. Stone cliffs rise on either side of a river far below. The hills are covered in tree. Quote on top reads "Ask a bird how to fly, and it might tell you to remove the weight from your wings." - Erin Loechner

“It’s a dangerous business…going out your door. You step onto the road, and if you don’t keep your feet, there’s no knowing where you might be swept off to.” – J.R.R. Tolkien

Another Lord of the Rings travel quote. I did insert the standard ellipses instead of having “Frodo” in the quote, just to make it a little more relevant.

An empty highway leads towards the Rocky Mountains. Quote on top reads "It's a dangerous business...going out your door. You step onto the road, and if you don't keep your feet, there's no knowing where you might be swept off to." - J.R.R. Tolkien

“If you’re always racing to the next moment, what happens to the one you’re in?” – Nanette Mathews

Snow covered Rocky Mountains with a dark forest in front of them. The sun hides, glowing white behind some white clouds. Quote on top reads "If you're always racing to the next moment, what happens to the one you're in?" - Nanette Mathews

“Joy comes to us in ordinary moments, we risk missing out when we get too busy chasing down the extraordinary.” – Brene Brown

Natural bridge near Field BC. A stone bridge in the Canadian Rockies with a blue green river flowing through it. A tree covered mountain rises in the background. Quote on top reads""Joy comes to us in ordinary moments, we risk missing out when we get too busy chasing down the extraordinary."- Brene Brown

“I can’t think of anything that excites a greater sense of childlike wonder than to be in a country where you are ignorant of almost everything. Suddenly you are five years old again. You can’t read anything, you have only the most rudimentary sense of how things work, you can’t even reliably cross a street without endangering your life. Your whole existence becomes a series of interesting guesses.” – Bill Bryson

Ridiculously difficult to fit onto one shareable photo, but I did my best! It’s such a great quote.

A blurred sunset over a city. Quote on top reads "I can't think of anything that excites a greater sense of childlike wonder than to be in a country where you are ignorant of almost everything. Suddenly you are five years old again. You can't read anything, you have only the most rudimentary sense of how things work, you can't even reliably cross a street without endangering your life. Your whole existence becomes a series of interesting guesses." - Bill Bryson

“It is not the destination where you end up, but the mishaps and memories you create along the way.” – Penelope Riley

A canyon with a blue green river running through it. Evergreen forest grows around it, and in the distant background, some mountains. The quote on top reads "It is not the destination where you end up, but the mishaps and memories you create along the way." - Penelope Riley

“You’re in love with something bigger than love
You believe in something stronger than trust.
Wanderlust”
– The Weeknd

Had to slide a lyric in here since it literally has the word “Wanderlust” in it.

an aerial shot of an evergreen forest with an empty road winding through it. The quote reads "You're in love with something bigger than love
You believe in something stronger than trust.
Wanderlust" The Weeknd

Anthony Bourdain Slow Travel Quotes

When I started, I had no idea I would need an entire sub category dedicated to the late, great, Anthony Bourdain.

Turns out he was full of quotable quotes!

The journey is part of the experience – an expression of the seriousness of one’s intent. One doesn’t take the A train to Mecca.” – Anthony Bourdain

“One doesn’t take the A train to Mecca.” is officially one of my favourite travel quotes. It just reeks of disdain which for some reason is incredibly funny to me.

a girl dances on a beach in Portugal with sandstone cliffs rising high on either side of her. The quote on top reads "The journey is part of the experience – an expression of the seriousness of one’s intent. One doesn’t take the A train to Mecca.” - Anthony Bourdain

“I urge you to travel – as far and as widely as possible. Sleep on floors if you have to. Find out how other people live and eat and cook. Learn from them, wherever you go.” -Anthony Bourdain

Literally, slow travel in a nutshell.

A round concrete building at Buchart Gardens with vines growing up the sides and a large mossy bee sculpture front and centre. Quote on top reads ""I urge you to travel - as far and as widely as possible. Sleep on floors if you have to. Find out how other people live and eat and cook. Learn from them, wherever you go." - anthony bourdain

“I’m a big believer in winging it. I’m a big believer that you’re never going to find the perfect city travel experience or the perfect meal without a constant willingness to experience a bad one. Letting the happy accident happen is what a lot of vacation itineraries miss, I think, and I’m always trying to push people to allow those things to happen rather than stick to some rigid itinerary.” – Anthony Bourdain

My only issue with Anthony Bourdain’s travel quotes, is that he was so dang wordy!

A proposed shorter version could be:

“I’m a big believer in winging it…You’re never going to find the perfect…travel experience…without the constant willingness to experience a bad one.”

But that’s an awful lot of ellipses! I did shorten it for the quote picture, because it was just never going to fit:

A blurred background of an empty road with the Edmonton city skyline in the distance. Quote reads ""I’m a big believer in winging it. I’m a big believer that you’re never going to find the perfect city travel experience or the perfect meal without a constant willingness to experience a bad one." - Anthony Bourdain

“Travel isn’t always pretty. It isn’t always comfortable. Sometimes it hurts, it even breaks your heart. But that’s okay. The journey changes you – it should change you. It leaves marks on your memory, on your consciousness, on your heart, and on your body. You take something with you…Hopefully, you leave something good behind.” – Anthony Bourdain

Another wonderful but wordy quote by Anthony Bourdain.

This one I split into two because I though both halves make a good quote by themselves too.

Quote over a background of evergreen trees growing on the walls of a arocky canyon above a frozen river reads "Travel isn't always pretty. It isn't always comfortable. Sometimes it hurts, it even breaks your heart. But that's okay. The journey changes you" - Anthony Bourdain
A beautiful blue lake near Canmore with mountains in the background. Quote on top reads The journey changes you - it should change you. It leaves marks on your memory, on your consciousness, on your heart, and on your body. You take something with you...Hopefully, you leave something good behind." Anthony Bourdain

“It seems that the more places I see and experience, the bigger I realize the world to be.” – Anthony Bourdain

Quote over a background of mountains parting with a river in between reads “It seems that the more places I see and experience, the bigger I realize the world to be." Anthony Bourdain

That brings us to the end of the list! That was 44 slow travel quotes to get your wanderlust juices flowing.

What is your favourite travel quote?

Want more?