Holiday Gift Giving – 15 Top Adventure Books for Kids

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There are those days when an outside adventure is just not possible. Like today. Six degrees outside everyone. S-i-x degrees!

We have experienced some of our greatest family adventures… reading together from a book. So, if great books are on your must-give-list this year then you’ll appreciate this line up of the 15 Top Adventure Books for kids.

Yes, we aim to please!

Note: Books 1-6 are most suitable for ages 4-7 and books 7-15 will appeal to children ages 8-11.

  1. Look Up!: Bird Watching in Your Own Backyard by Annette LeBlanc Cate. If you love quirky then you’ll enjoy this book of full-color illustrations that portray dozens of birds chatting about their distinctive characteristics, including color, shape, plumage, beak, foot types, and more.
  2. Summer According to Humphrey by Betty G. Birney. When Humphrey hears that school is ending, he panics. School ends? What’s a classroom hamster to do if he’s not in school? But as it turns out, there’s something thrilling in store for Humphrey.
  3. Pocket Genius: Bugs by DK. Whether it’s the industrious ant, the breath-taking Monarch butterfly, or the multi-legged centipede, no bug is left unexamined in this visual encyclopedia.
  4. The Listening Walk by Paul Showers. This is another classic book for preschoolers. A little girl is taking a walk with her father and her dog. Together they learn to listen to the various sounds they encounter on their walk.
  5. Who Pooped in the Park?  A series by Gary D. Robson. What kid doesn’t like to talk about poop? Elementary school aged children will be surprised how much naturalists, scientists, and even hikers can learn about animals just by looking at their scat.
  6. Ladybug Girl by Jacky Davis and David Soman. A little girl dressed like a ladybug finds ways to amuse herself outside whenever the rest of her family is too busy to play with her. Ladybug Girl discovers that ant hills and old logs can be very entertaining.
  7. The Outdoor Book for Adventurous Boys by Adrian Besley. The book has more than 70 entries on the great outdoors, survival techniques, games, and cunning inventions. It includes a mixture of useful outdoor skills, fun activities, and hidden knowledge.
  8. The Kid’s Outdoor Adventure Book – 448 Great Things to Do in Nature Before You Grow Up by Stacy Tornio and Ken Keffer. Nature is a destination, but you don’t have to travel anywhere to find it. Just open the door and step outside. The Kids’ Outdoor Adventure Book is a year-round how-to activity guidebook for getting kids outdoors and exploring nature.
  9. Project Garden by Stacy Tornio. In this beautiful, project-by-project guide, mom and master gardener Stacy Tornio will inspire gardeners young and old to explore, innovate, and cultivate through simple projects that will get a garden growing at any time of year.
  10. National Geographic Kids Almanac. The world’s best-selling Almanac for kids is packed with amazing animals, cool inventions, dinosaurs, robots, maps, games, activities, and more all in one “fun-tastic” volume.
  11. Camping with the President by Ginger Wadsworth. In May of 1903, President Roosevelt while on a western excursion made a planned stop at Yosemite National Park. The President and John Muir went off on a camping trip. They spent four days together, chatting about the wonders of the outdoors and discussing the need to protect wild areas.
  12. Peak by Roland Smith. This novel for teens is about a boy who joins his father to climb the highest mountain in the world, Mt. Everest.  If he makes it, he’ll be the youngest person to reach the summit.
  13. Island of the Blue Dolphins by Scott O’Dell. Far off the coast of California looms a harsh rock known as the island of San Nicholas. Dolphins flash in the blue waters around it, sea otter play in the vast kep beds, and sea elephants loll on the stony beaches. Here, in the early 1800s, according to history, an Indian girl spent eighteen years alone, and this beautifully written novel is her story.
  14. Mummy Math by Cindy Neuschwander. The Zills family is summoned to Egypt to help find the hidden burial chamber of an ancient pharaoh. But when Matt and Bibi get trapped in the pharaoh’s pyramid, they stumble upon an even bigger mystery.
  15. Kids Go Wild by Sarah Burke. Two kids take their clueless parents on an overnight backpacking trip in the Canadian Rockies.

Well now, It looks like it’s time to put the fuzzy socks on, wrap in a quilt, and break out the hot chocolate. Let the reading begin! These books should keep everyone dreaming, scheming, and planning the next great outdoor activity.

P.S. If you still need additional active and adventure-style gift giving ideas, then have a look at Adventure Mom’s Holiday Gift Guide.



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Firecracker. That’s how my husband described me when we first met. I like to think that it was a compliment pertaining to my penchant for high-energy go-go. I am the token baby boomer in this group. The one who is stalling when it comes to elastic waistband pants and evenings in the recliner. This fearless desire to roam the earth started quite early, when as a toddler, my father would nail my bedroom door shut so that I wouldn’t head out in the wee morning hours going door-to-door in search of breakfast or a toy. True story. Today, our beautiful life consists of an empty-nested, second marriage, 10 children, 13 grandchildren, and a yen for travel and discovery. I ski. He golfs. And together we play tennis and work on creating memories and traditions that bind our collective hearts together. After years of shopping center marketing, ad agency ownership, and some social media giddy up for the education and medical esthetic industry, I’ve learned that I am most at home sharing my love for a good story and the next adventure.

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