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7 creative travel journal ideas (how to start and what to write about when travelling)

7 creative travel journal ideas (how to start and what to write about when travelling)


Best Travel Journal Ideas

Travel journals are a beautiful way to remember all the fun you had on your travels. Find out which creative topics you can write about.

While Instagram photos and TikToks from your trip can be memorable, you’ll remember the experiences even better if you write about them in a journal. Studies have shown that, when writing, our brain tends to remember more because we think things through more slowly and carefully. It doesn’t mean you have to write a new Tolstoy-sized novel — your journal can be filled with bits of information, photos, flowers, patterns and details that remind you of a certain moment.

If you’re ready to jump on a mega-popular journaling trend, get inspired by these creative travel journal ideas!


A travel journal is a place where you write about the trips you’ve taken, about what you’ve learned during the experience and how you’ve felt. It’s your collection of stories, adventures and details that mean to you the most. Benefits of writing it include not only remembering more of your trip but also learning more, as you’ll start to absorb more of your surroundings. Besides, you’ll have a chance to reflect on your trip once it’s over, and by re-reading what you’ve written down you’ll feel like you’re there again!

Every journal is unique and showcases the owner’s imagination. If you’re wondering how to make a travel journal, keep in mind that there’s no wrong way of doing it. To start, you’ll need:

  • A journal, diary or a notebook
  • Pens of different sizes and colours
  • Markers, washi tape, double-sided tape and stickers (according to your wishes)

You still don’t know what to write about? Read on, we’re sharing seven unique travel journal ideas.


1. Write about the locals you meet and conversions you had

One could say that, oftentimes, it turns out that the most memorable part of a trip was meeting new people — so why not write about them? What are their stories, did they teach you something new? If they're locals, what did they say about their country? Was it different than your opinion of it? Were you surprised by their clothes, personalities, accents? You can write about an evening you've spent with them or about an interaction you’ve had with someone you just met on the street. It's all worth writing about.

2. Write about the food you eat 

You don’t have to be a foodie to want to try exciting foreign dishes. A travel journal can help you remember these new tastes more! Write about any food you liked (or disliked), write down recipes you want to recreate at home or list specific ingredients that you want to start using in your everyday diet.

3. Travel journal layout ideas

You can buy a pre-made travel journal, but the majority of people who started journaling will give you the same advice — it's the most fun if you make your own! There are certain benefits of having a DIY travel journal: you can customize it to your needs, plans and wishes, you can express your creativity and relax while doing it. To make it easier, take a look at these travel journal layout ideas.

  • Packing lists - make a list of everything you want to take on your trip, then tick the boxes when you're done packing
  • Itinerary layout - write down the times of departures and places you need to be
  • Photographs and ratings - put little photos of the places you've visited and rate them to remember how it was
  • Map layout - draw a map of the world, a continent or a country, then mark the places you’ve visited
  • Calendar layout - you can’t wait for your next trip? Make your own calendar layout and start the countdown!

Travel journal - date grid

Try to spice up your journal by using different layouts

4.Write about your travel bucket list before the travel

You can start your journal before you started travelling. Think about the places you want to visit and things you want to see. Do you want to spend your days in museums and restaurants? Maybe you want to visit a specific record shop? Dip your toes in hot sand? Think about it and write it down, because if you do, there's more chance it'll actually happen. You know how trips can get — sometimes you don't get a chance to experience everything you've planned because of the prices, crowds, weather or other factors. If you write down all the details before, you won't be surprised once you’re there. Write down the best route to that restaurant or Sunday working hours of a must-see museum.


Travel journal - bucket list grid view

 Draw a world map in your journal and start coloring all the places you already visited

5. Focus on something specific — for example beer labels or the beaches you visit

It’s easier to remember moments and events when they’re fresh. For that reason, it would be best to write every day when you're on your adventure. The logs don't have to be lengthy, you can just highlight what was the most important or exciting for you that day.

Was the chair in the restaurant comfy? Was the food spicy or sweet? How was the interaction with the waiter? Were there lots of people on the streets? Did you hear or see any local animals? Write about noises, smells and colours — everything that made an impression on you that day.

Travel journal ideas - beer labels

This way your memories will be even sweeter 

6. Ticket stubs

Another popular travel journal idea is having a ticket stub journal. Ticket stubs are perfect if you prefer collecting things over writing. Organize memorabilia like postcards, photos, maps and other souvenirs from the latest destination. While travelling, remember to keep tickets from museums, concerts or sporting events, as well as napkins, paper bags or candy wrappers. Buy a journal with roomy sleeves so that you have more space or just take a regular notebook and glue all of the memorabilia onto pages.

7. Bills, bills, bills

Thinking about a budget is the least fun but much-needed part of vacation planning. That's why lots of journalers like to keep track of expenses in their travel journals. When you create a beautiful expenses layout you'll be more likely to think about a budget on time, plan accordingly and, overall, feel much better about your spendings. Think about what you're planning on spending money on (everything from planes and taxis to hotels, food and entertainment), determine your max budget and start keeping track of it in a creative way!

It doesn’t matter if you’ve prepared a fancy leather travel journal or have an unused notebook ready to be turned into a collection of best travel memories. Journaling will make you soak in all the moments you want to cherish, as well as think about your next adventure. So, put on some music, forget about everything else, and start writing!

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