25 Things To Include In Your Travel Journal

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25 Items to Include in Your Travel Journal

I make a lot of travel journals, in fact, making books is my job and I also fill a lot of travel journals. Β And for many of us, part of the fun of traveling is collecting memories to put in a travel journal when we get home, and then reliving the experience over and over again. But do you ever struggle to know what to put into your journal or scrapbook? In case you do, I’ve made a list of ideas for items you might like to include:

1. Matchbooks

2. Napkins

3. Postcards

4. Travel tickets (plane, train, bus & metro)

Kids Travel Journal 3

5. Photographs (duh – I know)

6. Tourist maps & brochures

7. Paper bags

8. Flat sea shells & sea glass

9. Candy wrappers

10. Business cards

11. Museum, art gallery, movie & theatre tickets

Vermont Travel Journal

12. Menus from restaurants and cafes

13. Flattened bottle caps

14. A little watercolor painting of something you saw

15. Luggage tags

16. Drawing or sketch

17. Wine bottle label

18. Journal entry – write down what you did, how you felt and what you saw

Kids Travel Journal 4

19. Sand from the beach (place in a small plastic or glassine bag)

20. Money (small coins and denominations of foreign currency)

21. Rubbings of interesting textures (graves, paving stones & metal grates)

22. Receipts

23. Dried flowers, leaves & herbs

24. Tags from clothes & souvenirs

25. Coasters & beer mats

Please share your ideas in the comments – I’d love to know what else you have or would include in a travel scrapbook.

29 Thoughts on “25 Things To Include In Your Travel Journal

  1. I kept an itinerary and log of each day’s activities when I went to Hawaii. It was such a great way to recall everything we did on our adventures and helped me create a very thorough scrapbook when the photos were developed.

  2. What I learned that day. I see no reason to keep anything else.

  3. I used to keep everything from our travels – ticket stubs, brochures, etc. – but it got to be too much. If I can incorporate them into some kind of art project (like a scrapbook or collaged Christmas ornament), I might keep some. I continue to document what we do, see, where we stay, and who we’re with in a journal (and blog about the experience too) because I’ve found that I want to recall those easy-to-forget details later on, whether in conversation or while planning a return trip.

  4. Vineet Patodi on January 25, 2015 at 9:06 pm said:

    WhyFlattened bottle caps???

    • JoLee on April 29, 2015 at 2:44 pm said:

      Depending on where you are, there are some really neat ones. I have caps from all over Europe, South America, obscure micro-breweries in the US, and a couple of caps from the Middle East. They are going on my outdoor table top and will be lacquered over to make a level surface.

  5. I smash maps into my journals with the places we stayed or visited starred with a different colored pen.

  6. This is so boss! I’m going to Burma, and hope to travel the rest of the globe in years to come. I want to start a travel journal, and add on each time I go somewhere different. πŸ™‚ I’m so excited! These are great ideas, thank you! :):)

  7. I am currently collecting seashells and rocks to make jewelry and I can’t wait to make them and think of the stories that go along with them. I recently got a travel journal that has fun activities like finding random objects of specific colors and smudging the bottom of your drinking glass on the paper to remember a cup of tea or glass of wine. It’s great to have unique items to remember where you’ve been!

  8. Cheryl on May 7, 2015 at 11:07 am said:

    I have flattened pennies (the penny plus .50 machines) on a ring on the wire hinge.

  9. Michelle on August 14, 2015 at 12:20 pm said:

    Hi. I was intrigued about the travel journal abour smudging coffee because it sounded great. If anyone else’s interested, I found the title: I Was Here: A Travel Journal for the Curious Minded by Kate Pocrass (http://www.amazon.com/Was-Here-Travel-Journal-Curious/dp/0811877701)

    Also to the list I would add maps, stamps, a list of all foods tried at restaurants (I sometimes go back home and find recipes and cook for the whole family so they get a taste), pictures of all the food, pictures of the menus, all and any entrance tickets, brochures to museums, tours, archealogical sites, etc..

    • Danielle on September 14, 2015 at 11:40 am said:

      I saw something on another blog, called a food passport. She drew it into her journal before the trip and had restaurants she wanted to try, so that she wouldn’t forget to go! Then she checked them off with room to write about them. I thought that was a cute idea.

  10. Jasmine on August 30, 2015 at 5:52 pm said:

    Might I just suggest that you check customs before you travel. I would hate to fill my treasured journal with flowers/seeds and sand only for it to be confiscated at the airport. Perhaps make them easily removed just in case.

  11. I pick up a postcard for each day in a place I’m staying and write a journal entry on the back, string them together at the end and voila – travel journal for a specific trip. Depending on how you bind it you can add a pocket at the front for train, museum,show tickets, menus etc.
    I also have a lantern on my kitchen table for a big candle. Everywhere I go I pick up a couple of pebbles to pop into it instead of the generic glass stones – I only stater this this year so it now has volcanic stones from Iceland, golden ones from Mount Rainier in Seattle and deeper crown ones from Croagh Patrick in Ireland. have to pick up some from Turkey next week!
    For photography I have a pig pin board with a map on the world…each location I’ve been to has a pin in it accompanied by one photo – there’s a tonne of other photos around the place of the travels from the college year out with my best friends to solo travels.
    I l9ove to keep the travel diaries as I go and to have them to take out every now and then but I love even more to have the reminders of travel around me everyday – has me planning the next adventure! πŸ˜‰

  12. Y.s. on June 27, 2016 at 1:30 am said:

    Recipts—-> how about credit card statement that lists all trip-related transactions?

  13. Another thing I collect is recipes – this works if your living situation exposes you to people of different cultures. It’s cool to share and swap recipes, along with stories!

  14. Taking notes for all of this! πŸ™‚ Getting excited for our trip to Seoul this September! πŸ˜€

    Thank you & God Bless!

    JM Kayne | http://www.iamjmkayne.com

  15. Karen on May 9, 2017 at 10:33 pm said:

    These are all great ideas! Question, do you make one big journal and add to it after each trip? Or do you make smaller individual ones for each trip?

  16. Vincent B. on June 12, 2017 at 5:02 am said:

    Just made my very first leather Field Notes Midori in preparation to my trip to Seoul, Manila and Saigon. I plan to adorn the pages with stamps and and snippets of or miniature traditional costumes.

  17. Allison W on July 4, 2017 at 9:20 am said:

    Wonderful ideas in the blog and comments. Thank You! I am excited to get started.

  18. I always struggle to keep a travel journal. I try to write in it and collect things but always forget or get too tired at the end of the day. I love looking back on them though when I do manage to keep one! Good ideas for things to include!

  19. bethperry77 on September 25, 2017 at 2:01 pm said:

    I’ve always been one to come home, print my photos and then make a mini scrapbook album of my travels. well… that is taknig me too long! I am 2.5 trips behind! LOL. So, I am trying out travel journaling next week while in CA. I want to come home with a finished book (or 98% finish..may need a few finishing touches once home). I am so excited to try. I’ve been making my little travel kit this week. I really like your list and have added them to my “notes” on my phone! Another idea I had was to take a cork from Napa to create a “charm” for the tie that will close my journal.
    Thanks again for the great list!

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