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A Travel Writer’s Guide to Recording Your Journey

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No matter where you travel or what mode of transportation you use, chronicling your adventures with words, pictures and small mementos of amazing destinations can bring you countless hours of enjoyment for years to come. Try travel writing for recording your journeys.

In this post, we’ll explore travel journals, giving you our top seven picks and narrowing that down to our most treasured and why.

Basic History of Journaling  

The earliest evidence of writing and production of historical accounts were discovered in approximately 3500 B.C. The earliest recorded accounts were made by ancient Egyptians. And, of course, we all know about the history of cave paintings, depicting life with all its dangers, discoveries and fascinations.

Once thought of as “keeping a diary”, early journals were a means of recording our deepest thoughts and emotions. Many times these “diaries” were kept under lock and key by young girls, myself included, writing about boys, dances, and the various cliques at school. I still have one of mine from way back when and it almost makes me cringe to read those things now. There are also many very happy moments written in this diary of mine. My first kiss. My first boyfriend, etc.

What Type of Journaler Are You?

There are online journal spaces for just about every type of writing you desire. Some people feel comfortable accessing these online writing portals using their computers, phones or tablets.

I prefer writing with a favorite pen in a journal with high quality lined paper. That’s my favorite. I just happen to make leather journals with beautiful ivory colored lined paper, which I sell in my Etsy shop, Bound & Wound.  

I’m what I call an “all over the map” journal writer. My preference is to write about everything. I brain dump, ramble, complain, praise, cite and excite all over my paper. I don’t care about punctuation or being the least bit grammatically correct, or politically correct for that matter.

There are several types of journals on the market today, for nearly every purpose you can think of.

1. Gratitude journals

2. Bible Journals

3. Pregnancy journals

4. Dream journals

5. Multi-year journals

6 Travel journals

…and many more.

Travel Journals

I’ll start with this one because, after all, RV Travel and Lifestyle is my niche and the topics this website is centered around.

In this category of journals, there are also several varieties to choose from. Once again, you have online platforms where you have a safe and secure place to write all that your heart desires.

Here is another list of varieties of travel journals?

1. Midori style journals with multiple refillable/replaceable sections

2. Leather bound travel writing journal.

3. Travel journals for kids.

4. Ticket stub journals.

5. Travel itinerary/calendar journals

6. Diary style travel journals

7. Passport/document traveler’s journal

As you can plainly see, the choices are seemingly endless.

The travel journal that I choose is a leather bound Midori style travel journal. I love this format because, although the binding itself is slightly pricey, there are a number of different notebooks you can add in and replace as needed.

The size is noted as 6.5″ by 4.8″. I love leather. I love the look, the feel and the smell of leather. So this is a no-brainer for me. The fact that I have a choice of notebook inserts makes the decision also very easy. This product comes with a pen, a zippered pouch and extra pockets to hold cards, cash, passport and various keepsakes.

Conclusion

I love keeping track of my adventures. Travel journals and notebooks keep everything in one handy place, easy to find, easy to grab and go and they don’t take up much room in your pocket or your purse.

Record your travels, your gas mileage, maintenance records, favorite places to visit again, ticket stubs and itineraries. The fun part will come with looking back on where you’ve been, grateful you took the time to record your travel journey.

  • Hello Sue, I love the brain dump idea! I do that for my writing but not in journal form. I do have many friends that will not go a day without journaling,. I like the idea of making my own journal. For you as a traveler I think it must be great fun to be able to look back at a day and relive it. So do you have a favorite time of day to journal?
    Great article and thanks ariel

    • Hi Ariel, Journaling has been a part of my life for many years. I don’t get to write in my book every day and sometimes two or even three days go by. My favorite time to journal is last thing before I fall asleep at night. It is great fun to look back on our adventures. Thank you so much for your comments.

      I wish you all the best,
      Sue

  • Hi Sue,
    I can image that you have fun life, travel in different places, and record interesting things. I don’t travel so much. I have a online journal and usually write down ideas, interesting things, accomplishment, and things to do. It is helpful for me to decide what to do next. Looking back, I am always surprised to myself on the things I accomplished.

    • Hello Anthony, it is a fun and very interesting life, indeed. It’s also fun to share those stories here on this blog. Thank you for your comments today.

      All the best,
      Sue

  • Sue,

    What a great idea, a travel journal. I know as I get older, some memories of the vacations and trips that I’ve taken seem to fade. It would have been nice to have a written journal of those trips. It would be a nice little memento to keep those memories forever with you. Going forward for future vacations, I will certainly keep that in mind.

    Lisa

    • Hi Lisa, I love using a travel journal and the Midori style journal I mentioned in the post, you can add in different sections as you choose. You can also buy extra notebook sections too. It’s quite versatile.

      Thank you for your comments, Lisa

  • Journaling is something I have done only from time to time. My husband keeps one, and we have fun reading back from several years ago. I have never been as steady about it. When I have a really nice leather journal, it entices me to keep at it though. I really get what you are saying about loving the look, feel and smell of the leather!

    • Hi Annie,
      Thank you so much for your visit today. I think, no matter what it is you’re writing down, you are still journaling. I make lists…to me, that is journaling, like a bullet journal. I love reading back in my older journals too…that is fun, isn’t it! I’m happy to read that both you and your husband journal. That’s a great way to share even deeper with each other.

      I wish you all the best.
      Sue

  • WOW, Sue, I never really thought about all the possible types of journals that could and do exist! Unbelievable! I used to keep several diaries when I was a younger person. I had to get rid of them once my family started moving house…too much stuff! I wish I had saved even one, it would be interesting to read it now.
    Thanks for this article. I most definitely will be looking at all the different types available.
    Michelle

    • Hi Michelle,

      I’ve been drawn to diaries first and then journals…many, many journals. I know what you mean about moving and having to downsize. I don’t have any of my old diaries and I sure wish I did. Thank you so much for your comments. If you ever want some guidance on choosing a journal, please don’t hesitate to contact me.

      All the best,
      Sue

  • I love writing and I would love to travel. What a great combo!
    I have read a couple of books by the author Pam Grout, who is a travel author (though the books I read were about the Law of Attraction) and she has related a few stories about her experiences which made me want to get out into the world and start journaling about my own experiences.

    I also love leather-bound journals. I have one or two that I have never written in, because I haven’t had anything good enough to write in them. I’m saving them for something special, which will hopefully be my own travel tales. Something to look forward to!

    • Hi Craig…as far as I’m concerned, there is no better combination than traveling and writing about traveling. I know what you mean about the journals and not wanting to use them until you have something very special to write in them. I make leather journals and I still have a hard time writing in them. Your very own travel adventure stories will be perfect for your journals.

      Thank you Craig, for your comments.

      All the best,
      Sue

  • Dear Sue,

    Thanks for the post on “A Travel Writer’s Guide to Recording Your Journey” as you said In my childhood I had a thought that only to record emotions people are using diaries and now I am using only for making note of my goals and targets, also my important learning. But through this post I got some new insights rally helpful. Wishing you all success!

    Your Friend,
    Paul

    • Hello Paul, thank you so much for taking the time to leave me a comment. I believe in recording your thoughts and goals. I have done so for quite some time. If you’d like some pointers on what type of journal is best for you, please don’t hesitate to contact me.

      All the best,
      Sue

      • Dear Sue,

        Thanks for your reply. I normally use diaries to record important things to make note of the important tasks. Yes you are right we need to record our thoughts and goals for sure it will help us in achieving it.

        Your Friend,
        Paul

        • Thanks, Paul. We are in complete agreement as to the importance of recording our thoughts and goals daily. This helps us to stay on track.

          All the best,
          Sue

  • OK… are you ready for this? Just last night, as I wrote of the things I want to accomplish for today, I wrote down the brans of a journal that I’m using to get a new one!

    I actually have 2 journals, and I may start a 3rd. right now, I have a health journal where I write down not only what I eat and any exercise I did that day, I also decided to jot down thoughts. That last part is really helpful, so the next time I decide to devour a cake in 30 minutes, I can read what I was feeling that day.

    My other journal is based on things that I’m studying out from the Bible, along with note son gratitude and any programs from shows or art exhibits I attended. There are certain days when I may feel a bit down, flipping through the journals and seeing things I’ve done in the past that I enjoyed, really helps me to refocus.

    • Great minds, right, Veronica! I always have some type of journal sitting next to me at all times. I love that you use two journals for specific things…keeps everything in better order and you can go directly to the specific journal. I found something last week and I’m going to do a review on it in the next few days. It’s called Elfinbook. It is an erasable notebook. You can download an app where you actually take a picture of what you’ve written/created in your journal and then save it in a specific place on your computer, in the cloud, etc. The other notebook I’m going to buy as a comparison is called Rocketbook. Same principle, but a bit more detailed. When you’ve saved your work, you simply use a damp cloth and wipe the pages clean. I’ll let you know when I finish this review.

      Thank you so much for your comment, Veronica.

      All the best,
      Sue