How To Start A Travel Journal


I’ve been documenting my travels for more than six years now, and my first travel journal was a spontaneous one I did while waiting in line at the Louvre museum in Paris.

Over the years, I’ve expanded my skills and experimented on different ways to journal about my travels as I visited new cities and developed new styles. And still, in recent months, I have been exploring new ways to document my trips.

Starting a journal is as simple as picking out a journal, choosing your pens, and deciding what to do with it. Here are some ideas you can try.

For the paper collector: Collage-style journaling

The easiest way to collate your travels is by keeping a collage-style journal. Using tickets, brochures and ephemera from your travels, you can make out journal spreads by being resourceful and crafty.

Recommended journal: something compact, like the Traveler’s Factory notebooks.

For the travel illustrator: Illustrations / urban sketching

Drawing scenes from your trips provides an amazing visual reminder of your adventures. The simplest way is to always draw what’s right in front of you—whether it’s a building, an unusual street sign, the busy crowd crossing the street, or a random stranger at a coffee shop. Take out your fineliner pen and sketch freehand for the maximum experience!

Recommended journal: easily the Moleskine Art Journal, but also I’ve been using Soumkine Dessin journal recently, and had a time using the ABC Travel Journal.

For the wordsmith: Written accounts

Writing about your trip is a great way to chronicle what has happened. From bullet lists to longform writing, you’ll be able to channel your inner wordsmith as you weave words together and compile stories in your journal.

Recommended journal: Anything handy if you’re into writing on the go, such as Field Notes; or if you love longform writing, it’s good to invest in a Moleskine journal.

Check out my latest video on how to start a travel journal:

Have you started a travel journal this year? I’d love to see it! Tag us @shopabbeysy and  @abbeysy on Instagram.


Written by Abbey Sy
Abbey Sy is an artist and author with a penchant for art and travel. If she’s not busy making things, she loves dabbling in creative writing and journaling. Find her online at and @abbeysy.

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