5 Travel Blogs That Made us Pack Our Bags and Go

| | Inspiration

We can do so many exciting things with our travel blogs. We can connect with fellow bloggers and readers, catalogue our trips through stories and photos, spark discussions on topics of interest, and so much more. But one of the most significant things we can do with a travel blog is to convince someone to actually visit the places we share.

Convincing a reader to book a trip, not only illustrates the human connection and trust that develops between writer and reader, it also demonstrates a concrete return on investment to brands and destinations that might want to work with us.

There’s a lot that must go into developing a blog that actually convinces someone to go somewhere. There’s our voice, our niche, our social media strategy, and more — all of which play a part in whether or not we can truly connect and inspire a reader. But when you’re able to tell a story that convinces someone to see a little more of the world, all of that work is worth it.

Here are five examples of blog posts that made readers (and fellow bloggers) book those tickets and hit the road.

A Dangerous Business Convinced Rachel to Visit Scotland

My life was in the gutter. I couldn’t find a permanent teaching job that paid the bills. Masters Degree? Please. In employers’ eyes, an English teacher was a “dime a dozen.” I filled temporary contracts paying minimum wage.

In my spare time, I read travel blogs and dreamed about trekking to Europe on a solo adventure. I pretended I was a “Strong and Independent Lady,” but really I cared too much about my family’s opinions. Traveling alone? Not no way, not no how! Too dangerous!

Then I read Amanda’s glowing review about a budget company called “Haggis Adventures.” I’d followed Amanda’s blog, A Dangerous Business, for quite some time. This review grabbed my attention. I never considered Scotland as my first travel destination. Amanda’s descriptions and photos of the castles, Highlands, hairy coos, and most of all, simplicity and fun offered by the tour, inspired me to take the plunge.

I booked a ticket to Edinburgh in spite of my unstable career, skeptical judgment from others, and fear of flying. Surprisingly, my parents were 110% supportive of my trip, which proved the biggest obstacle to my dreams was myself.

Amanda’s review changed my life! I met amazing people on my tour, and visited far off islands that I’d have a difficult time reaching on my own. This post prepared me for the trip, because I knew beforehand about the parties at Morag’s Lodge, the types of meals I’d budget for (mm, sausage rolls), and the prices of optional activities. Most of all, Amanda’s post showed me options exist for nervous travelers.

The experience was everything I could’ve asked for. Not only did I search for the Loch Ness Monster and support local artists at the Fringe Festival, I realized I had the strength to travel the world, alone if need be.

— Rachel Elizabeth of Blonde Wayfarer

Rachel in Scotland.

Young Adventuress Brought Francesca to Wanaka

I’ve been using various Travel Blogs to plan my trips for a couple of years now. I love that they have up to date information, funny stories and are often written by people with lots of experience about the area you’re visiting. But it wasn’t until I hopped over to New Zealand again this year that I went somewhere specifically because of a blog I’d read.

Everyone knows about Queenstown, but Wanaka wasn’t even on my radar before Liz from Young Adventuress moved south. As I devoured post after post about this small but perfectly formed place I knew we had to make room on our holiday itinerary for a visit.

Liz’s photos of ‘That Wanaka Tree’ inspired me to wake up early to get similar sunrise shots and we even booked a scenic flight with Aspiring Helicopters based on her recommendation. I actually couldn’t remember the name of the company she’d used, so went on her blog and searched until I found them!

When we reached Tekapo we’d planned to drive north to Kaikora to see a waterfall filled with baby seals (another Liz tip!) to finish off our road trip. However I hadn’t counted on some serious Instagram inspiration! Liz posted a photo of the road to Mt. Cook and my heart ached for the mountain I’d yet to see. Sorry baby seals, the impressive peaks of New Zealand’s highest mountain tempted me away. Maybe next time!

— Francesca of Cheskie’s Gap Life

“That Wanaka Tree”

Adventurous Kate Inspired Angela to Visit Vietnam

I’ve had the travel bug really bad for a while now. In the last year I have purchased guide books for China, Japan and Southeast Asia, and spent hours poring through them as if I had impending travel booked. (I did not.) I spent five months in China in 1999 and have been dying to return to Asia.

Unfortunately, now that I’m a “big girl” with a husband and a full-time job and a mortgage, much less of my time is devoted to travel than it was in my younger, more carefree years. As a food blogger at Fresh ATL, I am often checking out others’ blogs for inspiration. Lately my interests have been heavily focused on reading travel blogs more than the food blogs I usually consume. I have never gone on a trip by myself (except for work trips, which don’t really count).

Adventurous Kate’s blog in particular got me thinking about that. I had the vacation time and some free cash in hand, but unfortunately none of my friends or family members did.

So I said screw it! A young, jet-setting co-worker recently put a bug in my ear about Groupon Getaways, so I logged on, found a trip to Vietnam, and booked it! Solo. Gulp.

I am happy to say that over the last few weeks since I booked the trip, my terror has slowly turned into excitement, and I’m ready to take on this sure-to-be-rewarding travel experience in just a few weeks.

Kate loved Vietnam, and I hope I will too! (I think I will skip the snake blood cocktails though…)

— Angela of Fresh ATL

Angela in Atlanta.
Angela in Atlanta.

Bohemian Trails Inspires Britany to Visit Bogota

New York City was suffocating. I’d moved there to become a writer, because it fulfilled some romantic notion of being surrounded by a big city while I toiled away on my art in a tiny apartment somewhere. I’d then come to the inevitable realization that New York City was far too expansive for a writer. Even in that tiny apartment. I had to get out.

I’d started reading Bohemian Trails because the author was also living in New York City and wrote extensively on the neighborhoods that were, for the most part, still new to me. Even after one year of living there, New York City was a pile of noisy mystery.

Then Megan McDonough wrote about Bogota, Colombia and the colorful artwork that seemed to coat all of the streets caught my eye. Bogota, Colombia? It wasn’t a place I’d ever considered traveling to. But I was craving new smells and different air — hoping it might inspire my writing.

After devouring her many posts on Colombia, I purchased guide books and booked a flight. I would go to South America with a one-way ticket, and I’d start my adventure in Bogota. I’d find inspiration in all of those murals. I’d find the time to write the things that I couldn’t while holding down three jobs in New York City.

Bogota was everything Megan described and so much more. I fell in love with the city just as she had, and I may never had gone there if I hadn’t read her blog.

— Britany Robinson of Travel Write Away

Britany in Bogota.

Migrationology and Just One Way Ticket Guided Lindo to Tokyo

As the sunset approached, yet another day ended; little did I know that it would be the beginning of a new day – that’s for sure.

One of the things that really helped influence me to just go was the blog post “8 Steps to Freedom” from Sabrina Iovino’s blog, Just One Way Ticket. The content focused on her personal story along with a guideline on how one can travel. The message resonated with me and inspired me to travel in general, rather than to a specific place, and I chose Japan.

While there I referenced Mark Wiens’ “Tokyo Guide”, from Migrationology, to tackle of course, the food restaurants mentioned. Cycling across Tokyo, and getting caught in the rain a few times, I stopped over at Tomoegata, Sometaro, & Yoshihashi.

The Chankonabe (“sumo soup”) at Tomoegata tasted natural and pure, you can tell it was authentic. At Sometaro’s, I was able to cook my Okonomiyaki (Japanese Pancake) on a platter, which was unique and tasty. Yoshihashi’s Sukiyaki (hot pot of beef with a variety of ingredients) became my favorite dish. Each bite led me to wish I had the skills to recreate it on my own.

I soon discovered Yoshihashi held a Michelin star. It was my first time at a Michelin restaurant and I didn’t even know it. On that day, the sunset approached and I was sound asleep, pleased with the delicious meals.

— Lindo of Philosophical Travels

Sukiyaki from Yoshihashi

Have you ever read a travel blog post that convinced you to book a trip? Tell us about it in the comments below.