A Podcast for the Road! : 7 Family Friendly Podcasts for Your Road Trip

I am a podcast fanatic.

I’m on the road a good bit for work, and between podcasts and audiobooks, I have kept myself well entertained.

Whenever the request is posed, “I need a podcast recommendation for our upcoming family road trip!” I am the first to respond.

When I chime in, the response is usually “Yeah…so….I was looking for something less murdery….the kids will be listening.” #truecrimefanforlife

Right.

I began to notice how many of my podcast subscriptions are true crime or politics…and it is a little unsettling. I have begun to diversify my subscriptions to add a little light to my life and entertainment for my boys in these crazy times.

Here are some of the awesome family-friendly podcasts that have been in our rotation as of late!

Dolly Parton’s America

Dolly Parton’s America is produced by WNYC studios and hosted by Jad Abumrad of Radiolab. Let me say this first. Dolly Parton is a legend. Dolly Parton is a musical genius. Dolly Parton is revolutionary.

I always knew that Dolly Parton was a wonderful philanthropist because of The Imagination Library. But, what I didn’t know about Dolly Parton could fill the Superdome. I started this podcast skeptically, but now I’m flat out obsessed with Dolly Parton. This podcast will likely be more interesting for older children, high school ages, and adults. The language is PG, the subject matter is thought-provoking and cutting edge, AND it is still appropriate for little ears. And, there are several remixes and remakes of Dolly classics on this podcast.

Reading Bug Adventures

The Reading Bug is a family-owned bookstore in San Carlos, CA. They also produce an adorable kids podcast! The stories follow The Reading Bug on vivid adventures with both suggestions for drawing and coloring activities and book recommendations from The Reading Bug’s magic book bag. This is a favorite of my soon to be 6 years old and a great way to ensure peace and quiet on your next road trip!

Hidden Brain

Hidden Brain is an NPR production, hosted by Shankar Vedantam. I could just say his name over and over. Hidden Brain explores the psychological and sociological sources for why we do what we do and think what we think. I really enjoyed the episode on memory from December, “Did That Really Happen? How Our Memories Betray Us”. This podcast will be most interesting for older children, high school ages, and adults. The language is always PG, though some episodes are more risque than others.

Radiolab for Kids

Radiolab is podcast royalty. As amazingly interesting as Radiolab episodes are, they aren’t always family-friendly content. Radiolab for kids is a collection of fascinating Radiolab episodes that are guaranteed to pique the curiosity of any aged kid and adult. They are appropriate for even the littlest of ears. Our favorite episode so far is the most recent episode titled “Octomom” about an octopus with an incredible will!

Story Pirates

Story Pirates is based on story ideas and songs brought forth by children. Each podcast has an activity guide to keep the creativity flowing-some are free and some are included in a modest membership free. In addition, each podcast ends with a “story spark” to get little ones invested in the stories and encouraged to create their own. And, if listening to spoken word isn’t your little one’s thing, you can download the transcript and they can read for themselves. The stories are fun and engaging. This is a definite hit for all ages.

The Dream

The Dream currently has 2 seasons out. The first season focuses on multi-level marketing schemes and the second on the Wellness Industrial Complex. So, is this interesting to children? Probably not. But, the subject matter is not offensive to little ears and they use little to no curse words. That’s family-friendly in my book, plus the subject matter is fascinating! It really prompts you to take a long look at what you consume and pledge your allegiance to. Super interesting!

In the Dark

I know, I know. I said no murder. The majority of the podcast is not what I would call family-friendly. But, they recently put out a series of 6 episodes specifically on the impact of the Coronavirus in the Mississippi Delta. And, I know what you’re thinking-“Why in the world would I and my children listen to something about the Coronavirus for fun?” But, I am serious when I tell you that these stories will make you laugh, cry, get enraged, and smile all in the same episode. These provide a fascinating look into the handling of the virus on many different fronts. And, I feel, provide a simple call to action for us all that even a child can understand!


The beauty of the podcast world is that there are new podcasts coming out all the time.

What are you and your family listening to?

Leave them in the comments!

Amanda is a native of Kenner, LA and is now an honorary Cajun. She is married to a psychiatric nurse, Joe, and is a hospice social worker so don't come to her house unless you are ready to talk about your feelings! Amanda and Joe are parents to Kael and Remy and furry parents to Luna and Spiderman. Amanda is all about that #boymom life and is enjoying wrangling her two wild men while checking out the wonderful culture of Acadiana and all of Louisiana. Amanda is a fan of all things yummy and enjoys a good cocktail. Her motto is "if I can't wear yoga pants, I'm not going".