Now you might have realised that I actually quite like documenting my travels and everything surrounding them. My favourite posts to reread are actually just my diary posts and that’s how my blog started. In 2015, Jack and I bought an Adria Twin van derived motorhome and we disappeared across Europe for 3 months. I wanted a way to document my travels so that we had a great reminder of our trip and my original plan of a scrapbook disappeared out the window when I realised I could just post my travels at blog posts instead.
I loved this area and quickly set everything up. As we were away for so long, we felt it was a great idea to keep every up to date with where we were and what we were doing, without having the same conversation with everyone over and over again.
For me it’s all about the details, you’ll remember the overview but the details are what you miss. When I look back at some of my writing, you read through and continually say ‘Ohhh yeah’ and ‘Do you remember this!?’. I also cringe because of how bad some of it is, but who cares!
However, blogging isn’t for everyone! So here’s my list of how to document your travels without starting a travel blog broken down into two different sections, Old School and Digital. There’s bound to be something that takes your fancy, or maybe a new way that you haven’t heard about.
Keep a Paper Journal or Diary
I still do this too! There’s nothing wrong with putting pen to paper. Whether that’s in a diary style journal or a plain journal so you can write as much or as little a day as you want. You can get some beautiful notebooks these days, but you can never go wrong with a Moleskin.
A Bullet Journal
Now, this is one of the latest crazes kicking about! A bullet journal is essentially a notebook with lots of dots so it allows you to use it in a million different ways. It also has a contents page so that you don’t have to flick through to find the notes you made on that specific thing you’re looking for. There are some seriously creative Instagrammers that can give you some inspiration for your bullet journals but I am not that creative!
5 Year Journal
This is the best present Jack has ever bought me. I’m currently three years into my 5 Year Journal. Each page is for that specific date so when you write your new entry you can look back on the last few years and see exactly what you were doing on that day previously. It’s small and easily portable and you can only fit a couple of lines sentences on each day, so it doesn’t become a chore.
While I have the blank one as I like the open endedness of it, there are lots of other ones that may be better suited for you, such as the Q&A one, which gives you a question a day to answer. Or maybe you want to make it more specific and pick up the Journal for Mums which asks you a question a day about being a mum.
Sketchbooks always tell a story, so why not challenge yourself to draw your travels and fill a page a day. Whether you pick up a small little sketchbook that fits in your pocket for those quick little doodles, or the type that would carry around a large A3 sketchbook and sit down in front of something beautiful for hours and draw.
Now I’m not the most creative person, so if I have a good base for my pages before I’ve even started, it’s bound to look pretty. I would recommend that you pick one that is a ring binder style folder that allows you to move around the pages and add in extra pages.
Some of my favourite brands for this include La De Dah Journals and Smash Journals. Alongside the journals you can also pick up lots of niche specific add-ons such as these travel pads, pockets to add in all the bits you pick up, photobooth frames or use washi tape to add in bits and pieces you’ve picked up along the way. Oh, I LOVE scrapbooking stuff, the possibilities are just endless.
Now there are a couple of ways to play this, but first, you need to get a jar and fill it up with bits and pieces that you collect during your holidays, such as tickets, receipts or pictures. Once it’s full you can either look through the jar, reminisce and empty it to start over again. Or write the date when you started and when you finished the jar and store it to reminisce over and over again.
Postcards used to be something you bought and sent on every holiday. Now there are not as prevalent but they are still pretty cool. Why not summarise your holiday on a postcard and either send it home to yourself, as long as you don’t mind the postman being nosy or just take them home with you. Postcards also make quite cool memories if you frame them, there is a huge range available in most places, from photos to retros prints.
Frame the Currency
You’re always bound to come home with a pile of money from the different places you’ve visited, but I’ve always found other countries money fascinating, whether it’s the coins or the notes, they always have a story. Why not compile some of your favourites and frame them forever more. It makes a cute little piece of wall art, large or small!
These really excite me for some reason. I have mine in a frame and then every time I explore somewhere new, I really enjoy taking it out and scratching off my latest destination. They come in many different shapes and sizes, but this silver edition one is my favourite.
Apps on your Phone
Notes App – There are now sections within the iPhone notes app that allow you to keep all your travel notes in one section. I’m all for making everything a little more organised and accessible, but if you’re not brave enough to share them for the world, this will be a good start.
Momento – This is a really cute app that brings a lot of things about journaling together. You can add photos, videos and write up at the end of every day. You can add people, places and tags to sort through your notes easily. There’s also a flashback feature that shows you what you were doing a year ago on that day. It also sends you reminders to add something, let’s face it, we all need a reminder from time to time.
Upgrade the old school postcards and use a postcard app like Touchnote. It allows you to use your own photos, write a message and send it as a postcard to whoever you want. It’s very easy and simple to use.
There are lots of options to pull photo books together such as Snapfish. With millions of different layouts to chose from, you can make them as minimalist or as creative as you want.
My best tip is to sign up for their newsletter as they’re always offering 40-50% off deals.; however, make sure you check out their current deals by clicking here.
When we came back from our 3 month European Road Trip, I had my blog made into an A3 book which I really treasure. I managed to get mine for £40 instead of £120 for 100 pages!
Print your Photos
Now, this is kind of old school, but the level of photo printing you can do now definitely drags it into the digital world! There is nothing better than printing your photos and hanging them on your wall. Whether you choose a canvas, standard prints or even printing on a mug, the possibilities are endless!
Again you can use companies like Snapfish, so make sure you check out their current deals by clicking here.
Start a Photo Series
You’ve all seen the photo series that @muradosmann started called the follow me to. The girl leading the guy forward by holding his hand. Think of something creative and take a photo in every location you visit! It could be of a toy that you carry around, of you jumping for joy or of an old photo held up in the new location for perspective. Get creative!
This is quite an easy one to do well. Simply take a lot of short videos while you’re out and about exploring and then join them all together. It’s becoming so easy to do you can even do it straight from your phone with apps such as iMovie installed as standard on your iPhone.
With all that said and done, you could just start a blog! It’s good fun, I promise!
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