Looking for the best travel blogs of the year? In this blog post, I’m going to share my list of the best travel blogs to follow in 2021.
Travel provides you with an escape from the ordinary. You’re able to step away from our commutes, jobs, and chores and admire beautiful and unique places. Even if it’s just traveling to another city in your own country, exploring an area that is unfamiliar and new can give you a sense of renewal.
However, while travel brings exciting newness, it can also be daunting. That’s because after selecting a location, you have to plan where to go and what to do in a place you’ve never been before. Luckily, the internet is filled with wonderful guides to help you plan that perfect trip.
But before I get started with the list, I’m going to cover how to start and make money running a travel blog of your own.
Starting a travel blog
Some of you are also intrigued by travel blogs because you’re interested in starting one. After all, if you’re going to travel, why not blog and make money from it?
Here are the basics on how to start a travel blog:
How to choose a name for a travel blog
Before you dive in head-first, you need a catchy travel blog name! To help spark your creativity, here are some travel blog name ideas to get your brain cells firing:
- [First name] + Travel Adventures, like Mikes Travel Adventures
- [First name] + [First name] Travel, like Kate and Mike Travel
- Fearless + [First name], like Fearless Kate
- Adventurous + [First name], like Adventurous Kate
- Adventures With + [First name], like Adventures With Kate
- [First name] + Abroad, like Kate Abroad
- [Word] + Travel, like Worldly Travel, Anywhere Travel, etc.
- [Word] + Traveler, like Smart Traveler, Budget Traveler, etc.
Finally, if you’re still stuck on a travel blog name, look at the names of the best travel bloggers on this list for inspiration.
How to start a travel blog
Once you have a travel blog name set, it’s time to register a domain name and get hosting for your new blog!
I recommend starting your blog with Bluehost, they are perfect for new bloggers. When you sign up with Bluehost, you get a free domain name and you’re set up with the WordPress blogging platform from the start.
From there, it’s time to write your about page and your first blog post to introduce readers to your blog.
How the best travel blogs make money
One of the reasons why travel bloggers even exist is because travel blogging is profitable. Let me go over the ways you can make money with a travel blog.
Travel blogs are popular, and as such, they get tons of traffic. The best traffic sources for travel bloggers are Pinterest, YouTube, Instagram, and of course, Google search.
What do travel blogs do with all this traffic? They “sell” it to ad networks, of course! The most popular ad network is Google Adsense, but you’ll have more success with other networks like Mediavine or AdThrive.
When you use an ad network to monetize your blog, they pay a flat rate for your traffic. The amount depends on your blog niche, and how much advertisers are willing to pay.
If you want to skip using the middle-man that is an ad network, you can sell ads directly to companies. But rather than traditional banner advertisements, companies prefer to promote their products “organically” on your blog.
When you partner with brands, they pay you for a sponsored post promotion, a series of Instagram posts, and/or to mention their product in a YouTube video.
To partner with brands, you need a media kit, good traffic, and a loyal following on social media to entice brands to work with you.
Some travel bloggers make money by selling digital products. These could either be other people’s products (affiliate marketing), where they earn a commission or their own.
Has all this monetization talk got you feeling like you want to start a travel blog? Let’s look at the top travel blogs to inspire and motivate you to start one of your own.
15 best travel blogs for 2021
Here are the best examples of blogs to learn from in the travel niche.
Sometimes it’s nice to have a face behind all of the travel advice, and Dan provides just that with his blog Dan Flying Solo. Dan quit his day job at restaurants to explore the world, spending much of his time in new places.
His site is organized by location, allowing you to select your dream destination and learn more about his experiences there. For those more visually inclined, he has a video section, as well. That way, you can fawn over the breathtaking videography as you plan your next getaway. Videos like this “Why I love Italy” segment will have you browsing for flights in no time.
Dedicating your life to traveling around the world may seem stressful, but for Jodi Ettenberg, it was just the escape she needed.
Taking a year off from her life as a lawyer, she began uploading to her blog, Legal Nomads. She did this as a fun way to keep people up to date on her travels. As she approached the end of her year abroad, she decided not to return and continued her journey as a travel blogger.
Her blog offers the usual travel tips and resources and provides advice on traveling as someone with celiac disease. Since she is gluten-free, which can be challenging to navigate when traveling with a language barrier, she developed restaurant cards in a wide variety of languages that can be downloaded here.
We see travel in movies all the time, the beautiful scenery we wish could be in the background of our lives. Well, Alyssa Ramos has accomplished this. Her blog, My Life’s a Movie, takes her readers with her on her journeys worldwide.
Her site is organized in different categories that allow readers to view posts by location, check out travel trips, or gear you might need during your travels. She has been to over 100 countries and has an impressive interactive map on her site detailing where she has been so far. Her practical tips, including advice on being an ex-pat, will help you feel confident in your next trip.
Nomadic Boys was created by Stefan and Sebastien, a French/Greek gay couple who travel the world together, living everyone else’s dream. Their content emphasizes gay travel, helping people navigate travel, and shedding light on the unfortunate reality that not every destination is welcoming to those in the LGBTQ community.
They offer a wealth of knowledge regarding how they’ve managed these challenges together, in addition to sections dedicated to cruises, interviews, and adventure travel. These tips are precious and can help you navigate your trip.
The Amateur Traveler is an award-winning travel blog by Chris Christenson. His blog helps those that feel like they aren’t experienced travelers become more comfortable getting started.
In addition to his blog, Christenson also has a podcast that details his travels and provides helpful advice to those itching to begin traveling. He gives inspiration for beautiful destinations and guides you through the process of booking a trip. The wide variety of topics he shares includes how to travel on a budget, something that can make travel more accessible.
Antonio Cala & Amanda Zeisset are the founders of The Adventure Junkies. With a blog and YouTube channel, they’ve built a community of like-minded adventurers who appreciate the thrills in life.
Their “Adventure Library” boasts over 1,000 blog posts that will teach you all you need to know about backpacking, hiking, or active outings.
Travelling is expensive. The flights, the accommodations, the food, the activities: they all add up. Knowing how to travel and not deplete your savings account is a skill that some take years to learn.
The Budget-Minded Traveller is here to expedite the process with realistic, helpful advice. Whether you need help saving money to travel or want to learn how to travel cost-effectively, you’re in the right place.
Articles like “How to Visit Iceland on a Budget” or “How to Save Money on Clothes (to Spend on Travel)” will make your travel goals a reality. Additionally, the blog shares helpful, non-budget-related tips, including packing lists and the best way to use your cell phone to enhance your travel.
One of the most significant barriers that travelers experience is language. Benny Lewis’ lighthearted blog, Fluent in 3 Months focuses on helping you learn a language so that you can comfortably converse.
His specific program promises to allow you to speak for 15 minutes in a language in 90 days or your money back. His blog offers helpful pieces of advice to assist you in the process of learning a new language. Articles like “How to Speak French: Learn French Faster” provide practical step-by-step guidelines to starting your language journey.
Award-winning blog, The Everywhereist, is the creation of Geraldine DeRuiter. She started her blog as a way to capture the experiences she and her husband shared as they traveled for his work.
TIME Magazine has featured DeRuiter’s blog due to the clever tone and writing. Her travel guides include what to see or do, where to shop/wander, where to eat/nosh, and where to stay. This blog is sure to inspire you to explore the world around you a little more.
For those who are a little more food-motivated, meet Girl Eats World. This blog is the perfect guidance for travelers looking for excellent and exciting cuisine. Melissa Hie, the blogger behind Girl Eats World, travels the world sampling delicious cuisines from around the globe.
Her blog shares information and inspiration, focusing its content primarily on Bali, Japan, Australia, and New Zealand. Additionally, the site is organized by other destinations so that you can look for inspiration for anywhere you want to go.
While there’s certainly a strong emphasis on food, she also provides helpful general tips for travelers in each of these locations.
For many women, the idea of traveling alone feels intimidating. Kiki, the founder of The Blonde Abroad, is here to help make travel for women a little more accessible.
She breaks down solo travel for women into specific steps that feel manageable, such as how to get inspired, plan your trip, what travel gear you will need, what clothes you’ll need to bring, and general travel tips for once you’ve arrived at your destination.
Her Instagram is filled with beautiful shots of her trips all over the world. The blog also offers a unique section that allows you to select the type of trip you wish to go on. For example, eco-friendly trips, luxury trips, solo female trips, or even trips for students. The combination of helpful advice and beautiful inspirational pictures is the perfect motivation to plan your next getaway.
For couples out there who are looking to travel together, Practical Wanderlust is the perfect read for you. Lia and Jeremy use their sense of humor to share with the world what they’ve learned traveling together. Lia always dreamed of traveling the world, and when she met and married Jeremy, they were able to do this together.
Their blog breaks up your travel by destination, season, and activity, making your planning a whole lot easier. The recommendations for places to go are helpful, insightful, and will give you the vacation you’ve been dreaming of. Their beautifully designed site and creative topics make them stand out in the world of travel blogs.
Award-winning blog, Cheapest Destinations Blog, was created by Tim Leffel as he assists people in figuring out their travel dreams without breaking the bank. His blog focuses on sharing information about cheap places to travel to and his favorite destinations for long-term stays.
A Broken Backpack is the creation of a long-term traveler, Mel, who shares her nomadic life with the world. Her blog offers advice on making money working online so that you have the freedom to travel wherever you want and provides practical advice on your next trip
You’re already familiar with blogs for solo travelers, budget travelers, and couples travelers. But there aren’t as many blogs that offer advice for families that wish to travel, particularly for an extended period.
The Flashpacker Family travel blog follows Bethany and Lee. They’re a married couple who travel with their 5-year-old and 16-month-old children. They offer helpful tips for people who wish to continue their love of travel after they’ve become parents in the section “The Art of Family Travel.”
Wrapping it up
Travel doesn’t need to feel out of reach. These blogs are here to inspire, teach, and guide you in your travel journey.
And, if you’re interested in starting a travel blog of your own, the best travel blogs will help guide and inspire you to share your travels online too.
Until next time,