A Travel Journal (according to wikipedia): A travel journal, also called road journal or travelogue, is a record made by a voyager. Generally in diary form, a travel journal contains descriptions of the traveler’s experiences, is normally written during the course of the journey, and may or may not be intended for publishing.
For me a travel journal is essential as I have the tendency to forget things/experiences far too easily, and then they are lost forever, definately not good if you are a blogger (ha ha) or if you intend to go over your cherished travelling memories later on in life.
I keep a diary on hand at all times even when I am not travelling, although I don’t scribble down everyday events like I would whilst trekking the world. The beauty of this is you have dates of where you have stayed, people you have met, address’, event reminders, accommodation details, your favourite recipes (my own personal favourite when you stay with friends & you want to cook them something special) etc. I know a lot of you will be saying “I don’t need a travel journal for all that, I have my iphone or computer”, well here’s the biggest secret you will learn about travelling for the day.
Electronic items need recharging!
You are not always going to be in a place where you can recharge all your gizmos, and they get lost, dropped into toilets, and lots of other things, where as your diary is a hardcopy that can kick around your backpack, get dragged through swamps (maybe with a little care), and still be in a reasonably good condition for you to use as a reference when you get home, you can also draw in it, glue things into it eg. bus tickets, your favourite photo of the guy you met in Barcelona, and the best part of all you don’t need to charge it.
What should I write in my journal?
Travel Journals don’t have to be a work of art, they should be a piece of you that you can keep for yourself, a great place to nut out things in your head, write down events that you don’t quite understand. Mine usually ends up looking like a 3000 page encyclopedia of my life! I write down most things during travelling usually at the end of the day right before I go to bed, I draw little pictures, stick my plane & bus tickets, paste in thumbnail photos of friends and family from back home for when I get homesick, and usually have to tie it together with an elastic hair band so I don’t leave a yellow brick road behind me of paper.
- Note: Travel Journals make a great present for your friend who is going travelling and you have no idea what to get them.
What sort of travel journal should I get?
My favourite time of year is when I get to choose a new diary/journal, its kind of like a haircut to me, sometimes you go with what you had last time, and other times you want something completely different. Your choices vary from: lined, dated, blank, soft cover, hard cover, spiral bound, elastic bound, small, medium, large, watercolour, squared, the list goes on.
As a general rule I go with soft covered dated diaries in A5 size, but this year I decided on a gorgeous Moleskine hard cover A5 dated diary which is doing just fine and doubles as a mouse pad when on my laptop.
A5 is a good size to go with as it fits neatly into a handbag of most sizes, and its just big enough to right all your adventures and heartbreaks in.
Dated & lined are my favourite choices as half the time I don’t remember what day it is let alone the date, and having a diary with scribbles on different days can jog your memory, and lined is just the way I like to write and doodle.