This article draws upon the work of contemporary French feminist philosopher Luce Irigaray in developing a post-structuralist analysis of travel within the autobiographies of the second wave feminist philosopher Simone de Beauvoir. Travel and the experience of wonder at the otherness of the world figure as important self shaping experiences within the four volumes of Beauvoir's life narrative (1958, 1960, 1963, 1972). Travel has a metonymic relation to the passage of Beauvoir's life, in which the existential extremes of anguish and ecstasy are played out in a (feminine) quest for self knowledge. Through a close reading of Beauvoir's writing I analyse the different formations of desire that structure the experience of wonder in relation to the otherness of the world and death. I also draw upon debates within feminist philosophy about the nature of subjectivity and knowledge that were, in Beauvoir's time, ordered around an Hegelian opposition between immanence and transcendence. I take up Irigaray's notion of the sensible transcendental to explore another way of conceptualising the feminine subject's desire to know and value the world differently.