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Because in 2012 we lived in a Winnebago, I started keeping a travel notebook. I used a battered (well-loved) old dictionary, a Reader’s Digest® Word Finder.

Hardly a notebook – more a tome! Perhaps a “Big Bertha”
(Nod to Shannon Green.)

Jan T

The motorhome is gone. We replaced it with a caravan. So my travel notebook is for trips and life notes now.

Word Finder
My journal was getting unstable

Some time ago, my friend Noreen gave me another Word Finder (above) which will be my new journal after the current one is completely full. That day is almost here.

A spread from a couple of years ago.

Travel journal 70th page 3-4
Travel journal 70th page 3-4

My travel journal needed repairs

The poor book was getting very worn and the spine was parting. Cloth tape now strengthens the spine. As well, I collaged some of the (removed) original pages onto the covers. A white glue glaze seal, a ribbon closure and a fancy brad finished the new look.

I am still deciding about decorating the cover further.

Full journal
Full journal

What is a travel journal?

Travel journals come in all shapes and sizes, from modern traveller’s notebooks to regular diaries. A traveller’s notebook may have removable signatures. This way, it is small enough for a backpack or cross-body bag.

My first ones were small spiral bound notebooks. The entries were sketchy to say the least. After we picked up all the photos from the print shop, we put them in albums. The little notebooks had information for small captions under each photo.

What goes in a travel journal?

Keeping track of your travels

The main purpose of a travel notebook is to record your journey. You can add ephemera from your stopovers, to say nothing of photographs.

I like to draw on my journal pages as you can see above. Colourful pages are more enticing. Some like to keep track of the food, the cost of accommodation, flights, and so on.

Still others paint the scenes along the way, as does Jacqueline Newbold. She wrote a book about how she records her journeys in watercolour. Below is one of her watercolour pictures.

Jacqueline Newbold travel notebook

Do you keep a notebook of your travels? What kind is it? Is it colourful, or more writing than pictures? Tell all about yours.

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