Robert Louis Stevenson’s An Inland Voyage is his first published book (1878). It is a travelogue, a pioneering work of touristic adventure, which records his canoeing holiday in the summer of 1876, with a friend (Sir Walter Grindlay Simpson), through the waterways of Belgium and France. RLS, then 26 years old, is The Arethusa, named after his vessel, and his friend, The Cigar.
It is, for the most part, a gentle journey, written in the Romantic style, full of humour, philosophical reflection, bygone charm and very frequent rain. They are turned away from fine hotels, find lodgings with tinkers, are welcomed, challenged and then bored to death by members of a Belgian boat club, the Royal Sport Nautique, flirt with winsome girls and Stevenson nearly drowns. Greg Wagland narrates for Magpie Audio.