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How To Write A Travel Journal

You should keep a travel log to help you remember your travels and ponder over the different places you visit.

When you travel, you are exposed to a host of new experiences. From meeting new people, to encountering different cultures and perspectives, travelling has the potential to allow you to learn more about yourself and the world around you. A travel journal is a fantastic way to record and reflect on these new experiences.

What Is A Travel Journal?

A travel journal is somewhere you can keep a record of the trips you’ve taken, as well as the experiences you’ve had and anything you’ve learnt during that time. It provides you with a space in which to keep mementos, write down stories, quotes and other details you don’t want to forget. You can use it as a diary, scrapbook, organizer or somewhere to store your creative artwork and musings.

The Purpose Of Writing a Travel Journal

There are many reasons to write a travel journal. Consider how you might want to use yours during your trip. It should be a journal that you like and want to write in, but not one that’s so fancy you worry about spoiling it. Consider whether you’ll need thicker paper (e.g., for sketching or drawing) or one which expands (for instance, to use as a scrapbook). You can also choose between paper travel journals or digital ones. With digital travel journals you can store and record videos, photos and audio clips as well.

How To Use Your Travel Journal

Pre-Planning your trip

1. Pre-Planning

Use your travel journey to start planning. Note down where you want to go and what you want to do. You can include details such as opening times, costs, location and the contact details for activity organizers or tour companies. Start to plan your itinerary and even include a map. You can also use your travel journal to note down your expectations and reasons for wanting to go on this trip.

2. Record Your Days And Experiences

Make a note of the places you visit and the things you see and do. From the sights and how they made you feel, to the food you tried and the people you met. Write down anything you learn or felt during the day, as well as any stories you heard and activities you tried. Keeping a note of these things will help you to remember the details of your trip later on.

Write About Yourself, Your Emotions And Reflections

3. Write About Yourself, Your Emotions And Reflections

It can be easy to forget how we actually felt at the moment. During your trip, take some time to write about yourself. Write about your experiences (particularly anything that was new to you) and your emotions. Make a note of the highlights of your day and why you enjoyed these, as well as any lows. Reflect on your new experiences and think about whether you’ve learnt anything about yourself during your trip.

4. Add Pictures To Your Travel Journal

To write a travel journal doesn’t mean that you only have to include writing. You can also add pictures to it, which can help it come to life and elicit memories in the future. Stick in photographs during your trip. Consider taking along a mini Polaroid to allow you to instantly stick in photos to your journal. If you’re using a digital travel journal, you can also add videos and voice recordings. You might also want to add your own sketches.

Add Pictures To Your Travel Journal & Collect Mementos

5. Collect Mementos

Your travel journal is personal, so stick to anything that you found interesting or which resonated with you during your trip. From maps to ticket stubs, bottle caps to coasters, you can even stick in candy wrappers and foreign money if you like! If you’re using an app, take a photo of it instead. Writing a small note beside it can help you to remember why you collected it.

6. Reflect On Your Trip

Take some time to reflect on your trip when you return home. Consider the highlights and what you learnt about yourself, as well as your feelings about your trip in general. Was there anything you’d change or something you’d like to do again? This will help you to plan future trips.

Reflect on your trip


There’s no right or wrong way to write in your travel journal. Ultimately, it should be a personal record that reflects your individual trip and your experiences. Choose a journal that you like and start writing!

Lauren Groff
Guest post written by Lauren Groff

Lauren Groff is an experienced travel writer at PaperFellows and Essay Help.  She regularly writes articles about traveling where she shares tips on the best places to visit and offers readers advice on how to get the most out of their trips.  When not writing, Lauren enjoys spending time reading and travelling, immersing herself in the culture of the places she visits.