Top 10 Soundtracks When You are Backpacking Around the World

Photo Credit: Dominik M. Ramik

Growing up, I was never a music lover but ever since I've been working at home, I began filling the silence with songs streamed from either Youtube or Spotify. Through the course of time, I have made my own travel playlist which I'd like to share with you.

If I were to film my Southeast Asian escapade this summer, I would pick out these top 10 soundtracks. Certain lines have a deep and profound meaning for me. These songs will also resonate with you as well. 

I hope these songs inspire wanderlust in you!

1. Time to Share by Gemini

This video features almost all of the places I've been to so if you need some tips on what to see and do in Southeast Asia, you better start with this.

"It's getting hard to tell
The months from weeks
But I can still remember
The words you whispered me
And we'll be separated
By a thousand dreams...
And I take midnight walks
When I cannot sleep
I see those stars reflecting
Like diamonds out of reach
And I know you're the one
The only one for me
So I'll take the roads that bring me home
Back safe eventually
And we'll have all the time to share...
I'm just one step away,
you're just one breath away..."

2. Perfect Strangers by Jonas Blue

I love this song because it tells a story about two perfect strangers falling in love in a strange land. They say when you are traveling, your guards are down. So it is not unusual that you easily fall in love. It may be brief and full of doubts and hesitations but if you do fall in love, trust me that it's going to be one of life's greatest adventure.

"You were  looking at me like you wanted to stay
When I saw you yesterday
I'm not wasting your time, I'm not playing no games
I see you
Who knows the secret tomorrow will hold?
We don't really need to know
Cause you're here with me now, I don't want you to go...
Maybe we're perfect strangers
Maybe it's not forever
Maybe the night will change us
Maybe we'll stay together
Maybe we'll walk away
Maybe we'll realize
We're only human
Maybe we don't need no reason...
No one but you got me feeling this way
There's so much we can't explain
Maybe we're helping each other escape
I'm with you"

3. Wildest Dreams by Taylor Swift

One thing I will never forget are the fiery sunsets and endless flat lands along the road. You can see the dust floating in the air. I can't believe how dry and arid the land could get just like the Kalahari Desert in this video.
"...I thought heaven can't help me now
Nothing lasts forever
But this is gonna take me down
He's tall, and handsome as hell
He's so bad but he does it so well
I can see the end as it begins, my one condition is
Say you'll remember me
Standing in a nice dress, staring at the sunset, babe
Red lips and rosy chees
Say you'll see me again even if it's just in your wildest dreams
I said,"No one has to know what we do,"...
And his voice is a familiar sound, nothing lasts forever
But this is getting good now
And we've had our very last kiss...
Someday when you leave me
I bet these memories follow you around
Say you'll see me again even if it's just pretend..."

4. Come Away With Me by Nora Jones

There's something sad about this song. Nora Jones sings like a siren luring men to an adventure. And yes, backpacking is an adventure that includes endless walks and bus rides to new places with new faces.
"Come away with me in the night...
Come away with me on a bus
I want to walk with you
On a cloudy day
In fields where the yellow grass grows knee-high
So won't you try to come
Come away with me and we'll kiss
On a mountaintop
And I'll never stop loving you
And I want to wake up with the rain
Falling on a tin roof
While I'm safe there in your arms
So all I ask is for you
To come away with me in the night"

5. On Top of The World by Imagine Dragons

Probably the best song to sing when you have reached the summit! I wanted to sing this when I reached the top of Mt. Zwegabin!

"If you love somebody
Better tell them while they're here 'cause
They just may run away from you
You'll never know quite when, well
Then again it just depends on 
How long of time is left for you
'Cause I'm on top of the world, 'ay
Waiting on this for a while now
I kept on falling short of something
I coulda gave up then but
Then again I couldn't 'cause
I've traveled all this way for something.."

6. Rivers and Roads by The Head and The Heart

And this sad song on the pain of parting and closing the distance. If you want to close the I had to include this in my top 10 soundtracks.

"A year from now we'll all be gone

All our friends will move away

And they're going to better places

But our friends will be gone away

Nothing is as it has been

And I miss your face like Hell

And I guess it's just as well

But I miss your face like Hell

Been talking 'bout the way things change

And my family lives in a different state

And if you don't know what to make of this

Then we will not relate

Rivers and roads
Rivers and roads

Rivers 'til I reach you"

7. Catch and Release by Matt Simons

Because when you travel you get lost in a flood of strangers and we let loose and have fun. We all have our own reasons why we travel to a strange land. Some people are looking for adventure while others just want to forget.
"There's a place I go to
Where no one knows me
It's not lonely
It's a necessary thing
It's a place I made up
Find out what I'm made of
The nights I've stayed up
Counting stars and fighting sleep
Let it wash over me
I'm ready to lose my feet
Take me off to the place where one reveals life's mystery
Steady on down the line
Lose every sense of time
Take it all in and wake up that small part of me
Day to day I'm blind to see
And find how far
To go

Everybody got their reason
Everybody got their way
We're just catching and releasing
What builds up throughout the day

It gets into your body
It flows right through your blood
We can tell each other secrets
And remember how to love

There's a place I'm going
No one knows me
If I breathe real slowly
Let it out and let it in
It can be terrifying
To be slowly dying
Also clarifying
We end where we begin

So let it wash over me
I'm ready to lose my feet
Take me off to the place where one reveals life's mystery
Steady on down the line
Lose every sense of time
Take it all in and wake up that small part of me
Day to day I'm blind to see
And find how far
To go

8. Summer by Calvin Harris

Because summer is definitely travel time. So this song is dedicated to summer flings and paasas. To fickle emotions and infatuations...of love, or was it really love or infatuation.

"When I met you in the summer
To my heartbeat sound
We fell in love
As the leaves turned brown

And we could be together baby
As long as skies are blue
You act so innocent now
But you lied so soon"

9. Shut Up and Dance by Walk the Moon

Because there are days on the road that I just want to sing out loud and dance but no one to do it with so I just sing and dance in my head or in the shower.
"Oh don't you dare look back.
Just keep your eyes on me."
I said, "You're holding back,"
She said, "Shut up and dance with me!"
This woman is my destiny
She said, "Ooh-ooh-hoo,
Shut up and dance with me."

We were victims of the night,
The chemical, physical, kryptonite
Helpless to the bass and the fading light
Oh, we were bound to get together,
Deep in her eyes,
I think I see the future.
I realize this is my last chance."

10. This is Living by Hillsong

When you are seeing God's glory, you can't help but sing a love song to God. Because just by living, you are blessed.

"Waking up knowing there's a reason
All my dreams come alive
Life is for living with You
I've made my decision

You lift me up, fill my eyes with wonder
Forever young in Your love
This freedom's untainted with You
No moment is wasted

See the sun now bursting through the clouds
Black and white turns to colour all around
All is new, in the Savior I am found

This is living now
You lead the way, God You're right beside me
In Your love I'm complete
There's nothing like living with You
This life You created, I choose

You take me higher than I've been before
It's Your perfect love that sees me soar
God your freedom is an open door
You are everything I want and more"

Which one of these top 10 soundtracks is your favorite? What songs play on repeat when you are traveling? Or what songs make you just want to step out of the house and head to beach or hit the trails?


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