The 9 Best Ways to Track Your Travels (and Why You Need To)
Do you know how many countries you've visited? Could you quickly list off every city you've explored over the last 10 or 20+ years?
Is seeing the world and traveling something that you prioritize and stay inspired to do? Or just an activity that happens when it’s convenient or when you manage to overcome all the excuses not to?
I'm willing to bet that at least one of these was tough to answer. The reality is that most people really struggle with these kinds of questions.
But you don’t need to be one of them!
At Conquest Maps, we believe that travel is one of the most fun and fulfilling activities in our lives! Through travel, we learn and grow, and ultimately become better versions of ourselves, thereby helping to make the world a better place.
It's something that MUST be prioritized, or we'll look back on our lives with regrets. Which is why we must take advantage of opportunities to see and experience this amazing world.
It's too easy to forget where we've been and to get stuck in the rapid currents of life, preventing us from setting and achieving our travel dreams.
That's why it's critical that we track our travels: both where we’ve been AND where we’re going!
There are several real benefits to tracking and documenting your travels.
You won’t forget where you have been
I don’t know about you guys, but my memory fails me as the years pass by. But when I physically record all of the destinations I’ve visited, I don’t have to clear up the space in my head to remember all of the places I’ve been!
You will recall your experiences more vividly
This happens more frequently than I’d like to admit - my wife will bring up a certain place we visited and without the help of photos, I honestly won’t be able to visualize it. It turns out that these “elusive” memories typically happen to be from the destinations that I have forgotten to pin on our map!
You see, the more you think about a place you’ve visited, the fresher it stays in your mind. I can promise you that with those pins as little reminders, I think about the places a lot more. Those trips become a lot more vivid in my mind.
You can keep all of your life’s adventures and memories in one place
Do you have a random mix of souvenirs, photos, tickets and currency stored away in odd places around your home? And maybe a few random lists on your phone? It’s important to have one prime location where all of your travel experiences (past AND future!) can be tracked and reflected on every day.
You can share your travels more easily with friends and family
Usually when you get back from a trip, everyone in your life wants to know how it went, right? By tracking your travels visually, you can show, rather than just tell them about your trips! Not to mention, when you have a map hanging on your wall, for example, your visitors are going to be naturally curious. It’s guaranteed to draw out some amazing conversations.
You’ll be inspired to keep coming back for more adventure
The fun doesn’t have to stop when you return home from a trip. The goal is to always have a new trip to look forward to! Keep the excitement for your next trip alive by having a visual reminder in your home of all the places you want to hit next!
Once you start tracking your trips, you'll be surprised at how many cities, states, or countries you've actually visited! (Or perhaps this will reveal that you haven’t traveled as much as you’d thought and show how much more there is left to explore!)
Now here are the top ways to bring your travel memories to life in your home!
1. A Push Pin Map
(Obviously, our favorite!) With an elegant push pin map, you'll be pinning, planning and pursuing your travel dreams like never before. There are tons of regions, styles, and sizes to choose from to make it unique to your own journey. Then add your own special flair with a customizable legend and a range of pin colors.
2. Travel photos
They say a picture is worth a thousand words. In this day and age, you don’t even have to carry around a fancy camera to capture the essence of your trip in vivid detail.
Document your trips visually by creating a photo album, scrapbook, digital book, or share them on social media for the world to see. You can also display your favorite or most recent travel photos on a complement pin board alongside your map, and combine a couple travel-tracking methods!
3. Passport Stamp Decals
Why keep your collection of passport stamps hidden away in a desk drawer? By displaying your passport stamp decals proudly on your wall, you can keep your favorite adventures top of mind (in a bold & unique way!). Add new stamps and customize your date of arrival as you check each country off your list.
4. Travel Blog
If you already take photos of your travels, you have prime content to put a story behind. You can create destination guides, share travel tips or even use it as a digital travel journal. This is also a great way to share your travels with your friends and family, near and far.
Don’t fancy yourself a writer? Why not vlog your travels through engaging video!?
5. Send postcards home
There is something to be said for good, old-fashioned snail mail. Choose a postcard from your favorite spot in your destination, scribble your favorite memory on the back, address it to yourself and pop it in a mailbox. It will be waiting for you when you return home to add to your collection!
6. Travel Tracking App
Plan, track and relive your trips on-the-go from your phone! There are several apps out there, but one of the best is PolarSteps which automatically tracks where you’ve been around the world.
7. Country Bracelets
Think charm bracelet, but for adults. For example, each El Camino bracelet is a unique representation of the path you have traveled around the world. Choose from a variety of colors, over 240 country beads, large cities, oceans and regions and even customize your own beads!
An alternative option for those not into jewelry is a keychain of country tokens, like those made by The Wander Club.
8. Travel Journal
Prefer putting your thoughts down with pen and paper? The great thing about journaling is that you can capture all of the sights, sounds, smells and tastes in real time rather than waiting until you are back home. Journaling is a great way to live in the moment, reflect on past memories and explore future
travel dreams. It’s a creative outlet for the feelings, thoughts, chance encounters and unexpected moments that arise on your adventures.
9. Destinations Tracker List
If you’re completely new to tracking your travels, this is definitely the easiest and cheapest option to start. We’ve found that before utilizing a map or more structured travel tracking method, this is one of the most common things people do to keep track of their past and future travels. You can make your own, but we’ve put together a digital template.
It’s a simple and free way to start wrapping your head around where you’ve been and where you want to go! It’s also a fun way to share your travels with friends, celebrate your successes, and start on the path to traveling more in the future! Take a peek below :)
With this download, you’ll soon have a working list of how many continents, countries, states, and cities you’ve visited, and more. Enter your email below to download your destinations tracker!
Already have your list figured out and ready for something a little more official to track your travels?
Check out our diverse collection of push pin maps to show off all of the amazing places you’ve experienced and destinations you can’t wait to visit!
We hope that these ideas inspired you to showcase your travels and ensure that your memories last a lifetime!