Start Your Travel Journal
Travel journals are gaining more and more popularity, but you don’t need to have a fancy expensive journal or specific supplies, or even a talent at illustrations and writing. All you need is a bullet journal and a few ideas on making pages come to life with a simple fountain pen and a few highlighters or markers.
Doing A Daily Log In Your Travel Journal
Daily logging can be done in various ways, depending on the kind of notes you want to be taking or how busy your daily travel schedule is. One of the most popular ways is to divide each page into three sections, one for each day, and outline what you experienced that day, based on several categories (food, activities, sights).
Another option is to create a daily travel journal that outlines your plans for the trip and holds important information, like departure times, hotels, check-ins, possible food choices, and things to do and see for that day. I like to keep the daily Log very simple by using a black fountain pen. And Jumbo Juicy Scented Highlighters, since they are easy to travel with and a pleasure to write with, and they smell delicious!
Make A Packing List
Packing Lists can be made in various ways, depending on whether you prefer to have the same list to go off on all the trips or want to create an individual list for each trip. If you tend to go on unique adventures, a separate list would be best. You can break it down into several sections:
- Tech gear
- Hiking Gear
- Carry On
We had to create a special Hiking Gear list for our Peru trip that included everything that would go into our individual “Day packs.” So when we packed our Day packs, we knew what to grab very quickly.
On my Peru page, I experimented with the Calligraphy Duo Markers, which are so fun because they are double-ended!
Have A Bucket List
Bucket lists for your travel journal are countries or cities that you can cross off, highlight, or review as you visit them. If you go by country, you can include the cities you have already seen as you complete your list, or you can add cities you still want to visit. It is gratifying to look back at a list of places you have traveled, so I recommend having a separate list of Places Traveled and Bucket lists, which you can cross off to get the satisfaction of a to-do list.
I used a black fab fountain pen with color write fountain pens for my bucket list to make it more fun and colorful. I also highlighted the countries already crossed off/visited with the mini magic liners. The liners are small, easy to pack, and erasable too.
Everyone Should Have A Summer Bucket List
A summer bucket list is an entirely different type of bucket list that everyone should have for every season, but summer especially since it tends to be the busiest and most treasured one. You can include anything you want that screams SUMMER and makes you feel warm and fuzzy inside. For families, this is almost a ‘must do’ to make summer special, even if your list includes things as simple as “go out to see movies” or “play with sprinklers in the yard.”
For a Summer Bucket List, I used my favorite black fab fountain pens and Pastel Mints scented highlighters. That is my ‘go-to’ combination for quick and colorful journaling!
Make A Road Trip Planner
While this can get very detailed, I love planning out seasonal road trips using essential destinations and a rough mind map of MUST VISITS at first. Once you map out that initial route, go back and look at what else you can hit on the way and how many days we have for each destination, and if there’s something worthy of a detour. Or sometimes, I even map out different routes because seeing them helps me determine which one to select.
I love to color in the boxes with multi-colored fountain pens for these road trip mind maps.
Start A US States List In Your Travel Journal
If you love the idea of visiting every state in the United States or enjoy writing down cool things to do in each state for when you get to go on that cross country year-long road trip, you can make a list of all the states and include notes of destinations to visit within that state. It’s essential to give enough room for each state, but if your state list is more of a bucket list, listing them out on two pages is good enough and still gives you enough space to make a few notes.
I loved trying out metallic brush markers for the boxes of the states. They look so cool! Switch it up with pastel liners for a different look.
Use Your Travel Journal as your Trip Planner
When planning a visit to a destination, it helps to outline not only the itinerary, but things you would like to see, do, and of course, eat! I love creating separate pages for each destination for a quick reference on where to go when you’re hungry and what to do. It can help you plan the itinerary (you can move it to the next page if more space is needed).
It’s an excellent tool for creating a quick guide to your hometown to share with friends and family who love to visit, as well as keeping a record for when people ask you for advice. Don’t let all that research go to waste. With a quick photo, you can be the “travel guru” of your circle of friends! I used my favorite combo of highlighters and black splendid fountain pen for this page.
Elena Ollick is a Russian-born Florida girl whose favorite pastimes are traveling with her 7-year-old daughter, photography, volleyball, and writing. Elena is the founder of an online magazine for women, Daily Mom, runs personal lifestyle and travel blogs, Every Avenue Life and Our Little Voyages, and spends half of her year exploring destinations and writing about them on a newly launched travel website, Every Avenue Travel.