Click here to check this post out on my personal website.
I’ve never really been an outdoors person, but I grew up in a household that loved their family trips. When your extended family lives on another continent, you get kind of used to it. As a result, I think I have a somewhat uncharacteristic sense of wanderlust. To that end, I think I’ve always enjoyed anime that let me channel that feeling in a better (cheaper) way. These shows feature characters who are just trying to get from place to place, whether it’s to explore their destination or to take in the sights along the way.
5. Sora yori mo Tooi Basho (A Place Further Than The Universe)
Admittedly, this series involves much fewer destinations, but it technically includes content from three different countries. I’d say that counts. Additionally, I think it’s probably the most relatable tale in the modern era, as it follows four girls who travel together to Antarctica. I’m not necessarily saying that Antarctica is the most desirable of destinations, but the idea of putting together a group of people to visit a new place is somewhat universal.
4. Hakumei to Mikochi
This isn’t the grandest of journeys, but it’s all relative. The titular characters, Hakumei and Mikochi, inhabit the world of the small, which makes a vast expanse even more so. I think the novelty of the show largely comes from how the perspective change influences the lives of the girls. Because of the size difference, they can live in a tree and food becomes more plentiful. It’s a relaxing world to experience.
3. Shoujo Shuumatsu Ryokou (Girls’ Last Tour)
How about something more futuristic? I can think of nothing more uplifting than a show about two girls who explore the shattered remains of a humanity that has all but destroyed itself. While most travel shows are about unraveling the world around you and seeing beautiful backgrounds, this series is more of a mystery show. As we follow Chito and Yuuri, we’re learning about how the world has managed to get itself to this point. In that sense, it will always be one of my favorite shows set in a post-apocalyptic world.
2. Spice and Wolf
Set in a simpler time, this series is probably the one I think about first when I think of travel. The two main characters, Holo and Kraft Lawrence, have a clear goal in mind, but they stop to explore everything along the way. While the main thrust of the series is the portrayal of economic and business interactions, I think the series benefits greatly from the diversity of its setting. It’s so entertaining to watch Holo and Lawrence learn about the various cities in this humble period of history.
1. Infinite Dendrogram
I suppose this is cheating, but I honestly can’t wait for this anime adaptation to air. Just from text alone, I feel like I’ve been able to explore an incredible world within a game that has its own unique ecosystem. What impresses me the most about this series is that it meshes its self-grown fantasy world with the “idea” of player-controlled characters so well. It’s not just a world that has been invaded by gamers. It’s a world that has become used to the existence of those gamers.