There are many benefits of writing a travel journal. It makes you creative and passionate about life and you can read it later to see where you have been and what you’ve seen and learned there.
But have you ever thought about blogging or journaling about traveling?
Journaling is an awesome activity to do on your travel for many reasons. It’s cheap and incredibly rewarding. Blogging, however is a bit more complex and it requires a bit of money but it’s an amazing way to share your trips with the world and maybe make some money on the side for your future trips.
No matter which you prefer, both are great ways to record your trips and make sure you never forget a single detail.
This is why I started writing a journal in the first place – to record and remember for the rest of my life – the good the bad and the ugly. I have about ten journals so far – what can I say, I’m chatty, even with myself – and they are amazing. I read them from time to time and I thank myself for writing them.
Here are some reasons why blogging or journaling about your trips is a great idea.
1. Each experience is unique
One of your main cons for starting a blog is that there are plenty of travel bloggers out there. And truly, you are right.
But you are also wrong.
Being a travel blogger means having a beautiful community to turn to, familiar people wherever you go and someone to help you when you are in need. But there is more to it than meets the eye. “Not every experience is the same. You might have seen this country a certain way, someone else might have seen it in another. It’s not a simple thing as every human is different.
There are people out there who would enjoy your stories of great destinations. You just need to write it”, – says Carolyn Roy, a Travel writer and editor at Writemyx.
I never started my own blog – never quite worked out for me, I’m more of a notebook and pen kind of girl but I guest posted a lot on the blogs of the people I met and the response is always great, no matter how many times people have written about those same experiences.
2. Developing your observation skills
You have probably noticed that the greatest stories are often not those explicitly told or shown to you. You just have to sit, watch and observe what’s happening around you. You could hear a mother fighting with her son or see young people kissing on the bench. Just like you, all of these people have their own unique stories and by observing and writing about them, you become a part of something bigger too.
People are no longer interested in the buildings and resorts in distant destinations, they are more interested in reading about the locals, their mannerisms and behavior. They want to know about small streets and quaint shop that’s been there for hundreds of years. They want to taste unique products, everyday food of common people just like them.
I used to sit in public places and just noticed small details in the behavior and manners of ordinary people. It helped me get to know the culture better and understand people more.
3. Tell interesting stories
People don’t want to hear about tedious details of traveling with a plane from one place to another – what they want is an adventure. “Something to take them out of their own lives and worlds and take them on a journey with you. And what makes an awesome story alive are the details interesting little notions about what people are doing ‘over there” – comments Dean Spurlock, a lifestyle blogger.
So, tell stories, especially if you are blogging. People will love them. And if you are journaling, tell stories that you love, something that will remind you later in life of the amazing things you saw and the lovely adventures you had.
This is what I do as well in my journals. I always write the stories I like down, whether it’s a two-page story or just two sentences. You can do in a local restaurant, by the pool, or simply in your room, to process all that happened during the day.
4. Find a community
As mentioned, blogging can bring you many great things but the best one is probably the ability to find a community of bloggers who will become your friends and helpers. You’ll be able to discuss your travels, boost each other up on your blogs and maybe even travel together at some point in the future. These people will usually think just like you and they will love to share their stories with you.
And let me tell you, did I meet some great people! They all helped me learn and grow as a person. Some of them were creeps but some of them are still in my life. You can even meet your future partner this way – I’ve seen many cases of this happening.
5. Become a travel blogger
This is one of the best jobs out there. You will find friendship, interesting tales, adventures and you’ll be able to learn so much more than you ever thought you would.
Travel blogging does require some money and time for constant trips but if you monetize your blog from the start, you’ll be able to earn that money easily. A blog will also require quality photos and these can help you increase your following on social media. For a professional start, you could also benefit from hosting your own blog and getting a domain name for yourself. All of these things do cost money but compared to what you get in the end – credibility with consumers and Google – it’s not too much.
6. Have something to pass down
Years and years from now, someone is going to be looking through your attic, sorting your stuff out and they’ll stumble upon your travel journal. They’ll go through it, page by page and they’ll say something like: Hey, gramps was cool!
All jokes aside, you’ll probably get to read it to your children and their children or just simply show them how you used to be before they came. You might inspire future generations to follow in your footsteps and give them some great advice and ideas on where to go and what to see.
However, right now, write your journal like no one else is ever gonna see it – it’s your magic place.
7. Inspire others to travel more eco-friendly
There are a few simple rules a traveller of XXI needs to know, but many travellers somehow often forget. With the increasing amount of international travellers, the number of people entering the country can often destroy to the country’s culture and the environment. Having a blog, you are giving yourself an opportunity to influence people in a positive way:
- When it is possible, take a train instead of a plane. This will not only make your journey more authentic and ‘real’, but also help to cut down your footprint.
- Do a solid research and don’t support tourist agents which destroy the natural environment.
- If you have time, consider spending it on volunteering for a good cause in the places you are visiting.
And so on..
8. Keep track of your travels
It’s easy to forget things along the way. If, for instance, you start travelling now, in ten years you won’t remember in which order your trips happened or where exactly you went, stayed, what places you saw. It’s a fact.
But, if you write it all down, you’ll always be able to go back and figure out where you started, where you went next and so on. Even more importantly, you’ll remember all those little things that made you smile or cry. You’ll be able to read about all those off-track places no one knows about, restaurants, hotels and so on.
This is great if you someday wish to return there or if your friends want to visit, you can remember and tell them all about where they need to go and what they need to do.
9. Learn from your mistakes
When you write about your various events in life, you often end up writing about some of the mistakes you’ve made, even small, what type of travel clothes to pack, which turn to be crucial while you are on the road. The advice you give to yourself can be invaluable, my friend. Not only can you rant about hotels so you can remember not to go back there but you can also rant about countries, people, girlfriends, boyfriends and so on. After a while, you begin to understand that this advice is truly what made you who you are today.
10. You always have good company on your trips
While I love meeting new people, traveling solo means that you are sometimes alone. That is, unless you have a journal. If you do, no dinner or hostel room will ever be lonely again. You can record all of your thoughts for the day, doodle, write some more, organize your journal and so on. It’s amazing. I never go anywhere without it.
It’s much better to sit at a restaurant and write about your day than to sit at a restaurant and do nothing. After a while, your journal becomes your best friend and you just love those quiet moments you get to have, just for yourself.
11. Write To Explore
Blogging about your travels is one of the most amazing things you can do with your free time. You are sharing your intimate stories with the world and inviting them to your life and travels. If you are still keeping your stories in the journal, you should consider some of these points and think about blogging. It could change your life.