Don’t Do Shoulda, Woulda, Coulda!
One of the greatest regrets of my incredible, long, rich life is not recording our travel memories. My husband and I both worked, had two children, and as most of us, lived a very busy life. We always said that we would record our travel details when we returned from our trips but we got so busy when we returned we never got to it. We traveled all over the world with our family and have only a few photos to jog our memories of the magnificent trips we experienced.
Please Don’t Make Our Travel Mistake
When you’re packing for your next trip, don’t forget your travel journal. Along with the charts, maps and logs, travel journals are not only great for planning your trips, they’re also great for documenting special moments during your travels. Sounds like fun, right? To help you keep track of your travel memories, we’ve got five helpful tips.
Journaling While Traveling
Making time to journal in the midst of your cruise or camping trip can be difficult, but it’s well worth the effort. Vacations seem to always end before you know it, so writing in a travel journal will encourage you to slow down and reflect on your experiences before it’s over. Whether you write in your journal before going to bed or first thing in the morning, be sure to schedule at least 30 minutes every day for dedicated writing time. If that sounds like too much time, try 10 or 15 minutes, or even just a few sentences a day and try to work the time you spend journaling up slowly.
5 Travel Journal Writing Prompts
Think of your travel journal as part bullet journal, part Mindful journal, and part scrapbook. Your travel journal is the perfect place to keep track of your mementos, pictures, and plans. Need some help getting started? These five writing prompts will help record your travel memories.
1. Map Your Journey
We don’t use paper maps like we used to. Most of us rely on smartphone apps to get around. For the purpose of your travel journal, print some maps from the Internet or get maps from the local visitors center. It can be a map of the city, state, or country. Take some time and mark your journey. You can also mark places you want to visit on your next trip. This activity can help you gain perspective. The world is such a big place and there is so much for us to explore.
2. Reflect on Literature and Travel Quotes
How would you describe the location that you’re vacationing in? If you’re at a loss for words, check to see how other writers have described the area. Research travel writers online or famous authors that have written about the area. Use their writings to inspire you to write about your own experiences. Not really into literature? Don’t have the time to read a book? Reflect on some awesome travel quotes instead. There are tons of beautiful sayings about traveling out there. They might inspire you are well.
3. Organize Your Mementos
Your travel journal is the perfect place to organize your mementos—ticket stubs, programs, stamps, postcards, foreign currency, etc. You can use glue to add a paper envelope to one of your journal pages. This way you can keep track of your souvenirs. And be sure to write a brief blurb about where you got each item.
4. Collect Your Thoughts
During your morning or evening writing sessions, set aside a few minutes for free writing. Don’t worry about grammar or spelling, just get all of your feelings and thoughts down on paper. For writing topics consider some of the suggestions listed below:
- What is my favorite part of my adventure so far? Which is my least favorite part?
- How many new things have I tried (food, activities, etc.)?
- What have I learned from my travels?
- Do I have any regrets? (You may be able to use these lessons for your next vacation)
5. Take Lots of Photos & Write Inspired Captions
Lastly, don’t forget to add pictures from your trip! They’ll make a great addition to your journal. Plus, you can add captions. Think beyond the Instagram hashtags and cute one-liners and instead, write thoughtful and inspired captions about what you were feeling or thinking in that moment.
Here’s one last great idea: Take pictures with your smartphone and print them out and paste them when you get back home. As a result of a photo travel journal, you’ll never miss out reminiscing about that family road trip or romantic trip abroad, you have one complete book to refer to.