You’ve seen the photos that give you so much wanderlust: a VW Westfalia parked in front of a beautiful mountain range while its driver soaks up the wilderness in lieu of sitting behind a desk. In the last year or so, vanlife went from a minimalistic pursuit to a full-blown lifestyle brand. The #vanlife movement has exploded on social media, where people document their journeys and tell stories highlighting a simpler life on the road.
Though it can cause some serious travel envy, here are five vanlife Instagram accounts to follow that might inspire your next big trip.
For over four years, Rachel and James have been living on the road and out of their beloved van, Sunshine. They’ve worked from the road as farm hands—from milking goats to picking fruit. Often, Rachel and James’s photos are accompanied with heartfelt long-form captions. Now they have a book featuring artful photos of their adventures, Orange is Optimism.
Meet Max, the scruffy rescue dog and Campy the van—oh, and their owner, Alison. Alison has been on the road since 2008, taking photographs and documenting her outdoor excursions. Her pictures have been published in National Geographic and the Travel Channel. She’s also had her pieces featured in galleries and museums.
This coffee shop is operated out of a 1971 VW van and served up to determined climbers right at the crag. Erik Gordon sustains his business on the road; selling cups of coffee most mornings, and then enjoying the outdoors himself. On his Instagram, you can find pictures of all the places he drives his van, Ol’ Blue.
There’s #vanlife, and then there’s #unimog life. David Roth doesn’t travel around in a nostalgic VW van, but in a 1964 Mercedes-Benz Unimog—originally designed to be an ambulance. Roth is a film director who takes his Unimog on tons of adventures, given that it’s great for off road journeys. Roth’s Unimog is probably one of the better Craigslist finds, as that’s where he discovered it.
Desert, dogs, and a great big orange van—that’s what Keith and Brianna Madia call home. They explore Utah’s landscapes with their two dogs in tow and live on the road. On Instagram, Brianna often gives the skinny on perfectly crafted photos, and the effect social media has on many wild places.