When you write things by hand, you activate a unique neural pathway in your brain. This pathway is linked to your ability to learn and remember things — which makes travel journal prompts not just useful in the moment, but great for committing the highlights of your trip to memory.

There are countless reasons to keep a travel journal. You might love the process of journaling, and have no desire to look at your journal once it’s complete. Or you might be taking notes so you can turn your experience into a series of blog posts once you get back home. Whether it’s public or private, wild or organized, short or long, your travel journal can help you get the most out of your trip.

And with the right travel journal prompts, you can record your experiences in precisely the way you’d most like to remember them. Read on to find out which travel journal prompts you should try, plus our favorite ways to use them!

Why Keep a Travel Journal?

Travel Journal

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If you’ve never written a travel journal before, you might be wondering what the benefits are. Here are a few reasons why you should try putting travel journal prompts into action on your next trip.

Improves Your Memory

man looking down

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Some people never forget an experience, but others struggle to recall the details. As mentioned above, physically writing things down can help you remember things better.

Since you’re forced to be selective about what you write, your brain makes a more significant effort to commit that information to memory. This is useful for remembering words in a new language or how to get around a new city, as well as for remembering your trip overall.


And as time goes by, you’re sure to forget some of the details of your trip. When you look back at your travel journal, all of those details you’d forgotten will come rushing back into your mind

Helps With Networking

group of people having a conversation

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Sometimes, you meet amazing people when you travel. They can become future friends, travel companions, or even coworkers. But when you just add their contact information to your phone or follow them on social media, it’s easy to forget to follow up.


Taking notes in a travel journal instead ensures you’ll remember exactly who you met, where you met them, and what you can talk about when you reach out. You can even glue people’s business cards into your travel journal, so you don’t lose them!


Kills Time And Reduces Stress

well-designed travel journal

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When you’re traveling, you often have a lot of downtime. It can be stressful to find yourself on a long plane ride with nothing to read or in an unfamiliar train station with an hour to wait. Writing, doodling, or even just reading your travel journal helps you get through those times. It also gives you a place to express any stress, worry, or frustration, so you can process it and move on.

Our Favorite Travel Journal Prompts

japanese travel journal

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Sometimes, the hardest part about starting a travel journal is just knowing what to say. Keeping a few travel journal prompts on hand will ensure that you never run out of things to write about. Try these travel journal prompts or get inspired to make up your own!

What will it be like when I get there?

What do I see? Smell? Hear? Feel? Taste?

What did I eat today?

What am I unhappy about?

What did I learn today?

What am I wearing?

What did I do today?

What words describe today?

What’s going on in the world?

What can I add to my journal besides writing?

What advice would I give someone else about this trip?

What would I do differently next time?

How has this trip changed me?

Getting The Most Out Of Travel Journal Prompts

travel journal and art materials

Image via flickr

Your travel journal may never be seen by anyone but you — so don’t be afraid to make it exactly what you want. Use the travel journal prompts that speak to you and ignore the rest. Come up with your own prompts. Or try writing unfiltered, prompt-free, stream-of-consciousness thoughts for a while.


Even if you never reread your travel journal, you’ll get the benefits of increased memory and learning through handwriting. You’ll notice that the trip stays fresher in your mind, with the details easier to recall. Soon, those vivid memories might have you wanting to take another trip or even move abroad.


If you want to live in another country for an extended period someday, your travel journal will help — and don’t miss our guide to moving abroad!


Have you ever kept a travel journal before? Did it help you remember your trip more vividly or help you prepare better for the next one? Tell us about your travel journal experiences in the comments below.

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