If you’re looking for the best bedtime story podcasts to lull you into sleep, these shows are bound to rock you into a slumber in no time at all.
Children are not the only ones who can benefit from engaging and relaxing stories to help them fall asleep quicker. There are plenty of podcasts out there suited for adults who love to listen to stories and could use the extra push to fall asleep.
Read on to discover some of the best bedtime story podcasts for grown-ups.
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Why Listen to a Bedtime Story Podcast?
Bedtime story podcasts are an episodic series of sleep podcasts with spoken stories that you can download and listen to when you want to go to sleep. These stories usually feature a soothing voice narrating either new and original stories or retellings of old classic stories, depending on the podcast.
They offer a way to relax and block out background noise in the night with some ambient music. Sleep health experts claim that these podcasts help focus the mind on one thing rather than the worries of the day, which improves your sleep hygiene.
According to professor and associate chair in the department of psychology at Palo Alto University, Nancy A. Haug:
“The mind is a thought-generating machine and sometimes that’s hard to shut down. The idea [of a bedtime story podcast] is if you become relaxed or focused [on] listening, your brain can actually slow down.”
Podcasts for sleep also often feature fantasy stories as well as personal stories or can even be based on a book series.
As Calm’s Head of Sleep Stories, Chris Advansun, explains:
“[Sleep Stories] gave permission to grown-ups, to people of all ages, to return to [what] was one of the most comforting and soothing experiences they’d had as children — just cuddling up and being spun a tale by someone they love and trust. They give listeners something to hold their attention in a peaceful way.”
One of the main problems with sleep stories, however, is that it’s often uncomfortable to wear headphones in bed. But, if you sleep with someone else, you may need a solution so your story doesn’t wake up your partner.
Introducing SleepPhones. These bluetooth headphones are incorporated into a super comfy headband so you can barely feel the earphones while you’re sleeping. Get yours today and get $5 by signing up to their newsletter.
Try Adding These 15+ Bedtime Story Podcasts to Your Bedtime Ritual
Falling asleep is challenging enough, but it’s even worse when your mind starts racing about a thousand things right before bedtime.
A sleep story podcast with original stories can help you to block outside ambient noise and drift off to sleep quicker.
1. Adult Bedtime Stories for the Creative Soul
Adult Bedtime Stories for the Creative Soul is a sleep podcast created by Kiamani, also known as The Adult Storyteller. It’s made for night owls and covers a wide range of content such as short sleep story samples, spicy poems, and inspiration. Each episode is full of creative energy and imagination.
The stories in each episode tend to be very short, usually less than 10 minutes, with some longer ones reaching 30 minutes. All of these stories are original and engaging.
2. On a Dark, Cold Night
On a Dark, Cold Night is a podcast dedicated to horror stories. Kristen Zaza is the writer, performer, and producer of these amazing weekly episodes. The subject matter is perfect for horror lovers intrigued by the macabre, with plenty of stories and scary experiences already uploaded.
Each episode can last between 30 to 40 minutes and are delightfully creepy to fall asleep to.
3. Boring Books for Bedtime
Boring Books for Bedtime is one of the most intriguing sleep podcasts on the internet. Created by Sharon Handy, these bedtime stories are focused on what most would consider rather boring books, like Galileo, Aristotle, and Emerson, narrated by a calming voice.
The monotone voice adds to the podcast’s theme and can be really helpful for those who suffer from sleepless nights. If you’re stressed, anxious, or simply can’t fall asleep as quickly as most people, this podcast will let you relax and bore you to sleep.
4. Bedtime Stories for Grownups
Bedtime Stories for Grownups is a series of scenes narrated by a female voice with sleep-inducing sounds and music. The whimsical scenes are filled with fantastical ambient sounds and imaginative situations that can help you reach dreamland.
There’s no plot involved. Instead, this audio experience uses audio and descriptive narrations to induce dreams like a sleep meditation. The full audio experience is available at the Apple store.
5. Send Me to Sleep Podcast
Send Me to Sleep Podcast is a podcast designed to help you fall asleep quicker with sleep stories, daily meditation, and hypnosis. There are some great books for bedtime in the collection, including The Jungle Book, Sherlock Holmes, and The Time Machine.
All of the stories are narrated with a soothing voice and appropriate background music, turning it into one of the favorite podcasts of many listeners who have had trouble sleeping.
6. Bedtime Stories with Mozart
Bedtime Stories with Mozart aren’t specifically stories for adults. It’s a collection of bedtime stories accompanied by classical music played by a group of youth musicians.
Featuring traditional favorites, enjoy ad-free stories accompanied by relaxing music, such as 20-minute-long sessions of Roald Dahl books or a 40-minute-long episode of Narnia.
While these stories are aimed at a younger audience, stressed-out adults can benefit from the ambient sound that comes from the classical music in these episodes. If you find your brain races before you’re heading to bed, fold one of these musical masterpieces into your bedtime routine.
7. The New Yorker: Fiction
New Yorker fiction editor Deborah Treisman created The New Yorker: Fiction podcast for people to implement in their daily lives. While not specifically made for night owls, people who have trouble sleeping may enjoy drifting off to the readings of Deborah Treisman. These stories can serve as background noise while dozing off.
Join Deborah as she hosts different readers to narrate works of fiction, both modern and classic. While each episode does have intro music, there is no music throughout the story.
8. Nothing Much Happens
Nothing Much Happens is a podcast with bedtime stories read by Kathryn Nicolai, a yoga and meditation teacher who has decades of experience in the field. It is designed as a slow radio podcast, meaning it’s intended for the listener to relax and reflect.
Every story is told twice in one 30-minute episode — first at a normal pace and then slower. It is recommended to practice breathing exercises before each episode to help you relax.
9. Sleep Cove
Sleep Cove is hosted on Apple podcast app with guided medications, classic stories, and hypnosis. Sleep Cove is led by Chris Fitton, a health and fitness expert with decades of experience teaching meditation and breathing techniques.
Each episode of the Sleep Cove podcast shows what type of sleep podcast it will be on the title. There are many to choose from, and many of them offer sleep training techniques like progressive muscle relaxation and other relaxation tactics to help you sleep better.
10. F**ked Up Bedtime Stories (for Adults)
F**ked Up Bedtime Stories (for Adults) is the perfect bedtime story podcast for grown-ups looking for something a little different. Instead of the timeless classics or childlike stories, this collection of stories strays into the weird and wonderful.
Taking the adult bedtime story industry into a new direction, this podcast does away with the boring bedtime story. Instead it’s a collection of seven short stories that focus on the unusualness that runs through our brain before bed and throughout our dreams.
Written by Alissa Anne Jeun Yi, Tim Crouch, Dipo Baruwa-Etti, Matilda Ibini, Vivienne Franzmann, Anthony Neilson, and Amy Jephta, these stories are performed like a production with music, sound effects, and dynamic narrators.
11. Bore You To Sleep – Sleep Stories for Adults
Bore You To Sleep features episodes of sleep stories that are so boring that you drift off into a deep sleep. If you’re looking for a relaxing night of sleep, tune into each weekly episode to listen to the deep voice of host, Teddy, reading all kinds of boring books, from Rubber Hand Stamps and the Manipulation of Rubber to The ABC of Relativity.
Read in slow, deep, English, the blend of bedtime readings has been perfectly selected to capture your attention but to eventually bore you so much that you fall asleep!
12. Get Sleepy
Get Sleepy is a podcast that combines meditation with bedtime stories. The stories are often based on book series and have ambient music in the background to help you drift off.
The structure of each episode is pretty simple: it starts with meditation exercises to music and then smoothly moves into an engaging short story. Get Sleepy is the perfect alternative to a meditation app.
13. Listen To Sleep – Quiet Bedtime Stories & Sleep Meditations
Listen To Sleep is a fantastic sleep podcast packed with 40-winks-inducing content read by Erik Ireland from his cozy mountain cabin. His airy, purr-like voice triggers your relaxation response as he reads soothing stories and guides you through bedtime meditations.
A treasure trove of bedtime classics, Erik offers a whole range of bedtime reads, read in his baritone voice. There’s a story for grown adults of all kinds, from supernatural stories, classics like Peter Pan and Winnie the Pooh, traditional fairy-tales, and more, all in one place.
14. Just Sleep – Bedtime Stories for Adults
Just Sleep, hosted by Taesha Glasgow, aims to help people drift off easily and get a peaceful night of rest. With a wide range of classic reading books, Glasgow’s collection of sleep podcasts features must-read authors such as George Eliot, Arthur Conan Doyle, Lewis Carroll, and Charles Dickens.
One of our favorite sleep podcasters, Glasgow has a soothing voice that lulls you to sleep, while helping you tick off some of the best reads of all time.
15. Dreamful Bedtime Stories
Host Jordan Blair has put Dreamful Bedtime Stories out into the public domain to help every busy mind get more restful sleep. Her relaxing voice calms you to sleep as she reads her way through fairytales, classics, and popular series.
The perfect combination of new content with more traditional stories, this podcast is a top sleep aid to keep you enthralled by a story or series, while also helping you get to sleep more easily.
BONUS: Deep Energy Podcast
The Deep Energy Podcast is made by Jim Butler and is dedicated to those who prefer meditation without any story.
Deep Energy is filled with new age music, natural sounds, meditations, dreamscapes, sleepy ambient music,
This list of top-notch best bedtime story podcasts features hundreds of hours of quality content that will help you get better sleep every night.
While you may be keen to listen to a bedtime story, wearing headphones in bed can be uncomfortable. Instead, try SleepPhones by AcousticSheep — the soft bluetooth headset that’s super comfortable to wear all night long.
Welcome to Snoozerville! I’m Dr. Alex Hartley, your guide to the world of restful sleep. With a Ph.D. in Sleep Science and years of experience as a sleep therapist, I’ve dedicated my life to understanding and improving sleep quality. My passion lies in uncovering the mysteries of sleep and sharing practical, science-backed advice to help you achieve the best rest possible. Beyond my academic pursuits, I’m an advocate for mindfulness and relaxation techniques, which I incorporate into my daily routine. At Snoozerville, I aim to transform your nights, combining the latest research with easy-to-implement tips. Whether you’re a chronic insomniac or just looking to improve your sleep hygiene, join me on this journey towards peaceful, rejuvenating sleep.