You might’ve seen recently, I posted a few blogs about recent trips.
I’ve been travelling more lately, and trying to build this into my blog. As with any aspect of blogging, I’m really keen to do the best job I can at documenting my travels, and relaying back what I took from my trips into some really beautifully shot but also useful blog posts. I did some research on writing about travel, and was pleased to see I was already ticking a few boxes with my older posts. As I encompass more travel blogging, I want my blog to remain my way but to also be of use and interest to fellow travellers.
This need to be purposeful was further encouraged when I spoke to my friend Lizzie, who is currently 3000 miles away in South East Asia. Travelling for six months with her boyfriend, we were chatting about my recent trips, and of course hers, and how I was eager to do a good job. Two months into their trip, Lizzie relayed to me how often she found blog posts that implied they’d be spot on for her needs, as they headed to their next destination – only to find ten photos of the author in varying ASOS swimwear, and little factual information about the location. With this in mind, I got thinking about writing useful travel posts, and have compiled what I have learnt so far!
I spend a lot of time pre-trip explaining to my fellow traveller just what I am trying to achieve with my posts. I find there are two types of travel bloggers out there – the factual, seasoned travellers who really do tell you everything you need to know but perhaps lack in inspiring photographs (and are more about documenting the place), and what I call fashion-travel bloggers – those who shoot stunning imagery and make you lust for a similar trip, but don’t always give you information of use when you do end up visiting that location. For me, it was about combining the two. Shooting beautiful photographs and capturing the essence of the place with the right sort of language, but to also provide valid and useful facts with context. I’m certainly still working on this, and it’s all about the balance.
With this, I’m referring to transparency in your knowledge – how well do you really know a place? We’re all for an enticing title, but don’t refer to your post as ‘The Ultimate Guide’, if you’ve spent a few days there – leave that to the locals! That doesn’t mean you can’t write about your experience there and create a really informative blog post, and share what you learnt, but don’t pretend to be the oracle on a destination if you’re as much a vistor as the next person.
Where to avoid is as useful as where to visit – and this can mean parts of town, busy beaches, restaurants or hotels. If you’ve had a bad experience, say so and pass that knowledge on to other travellers. It could save someone £40 on a bad meal, or worse, if they end up in the wrong part of town!
I try to do this in my posts, and whether it goes for all I don’t know, but I know that if I’m researching for a trip, I want short, fast facts and names I can remember. I always feel the blog post as a whole might inspire me to visit, but towards the end, important information I might want to jot down is best served in bullet points. Travel journalists certainly won’t do this, but as a blogger, I think this falls into the ‘striking the balance’ category of inspiring as well as informing.
When it comes to blogging, generally you’re a one man band. You’re the photographer, the author, the researcher, the web editor. And it’s easy to get caught up in one aspect. For me, I get totally clouded by photography, and then have to really force myself to sit down and concentrate on my writing – making sure I tick all the boxes I’m talking about today. But if you’re a more keen writer, don’t forget that a photo speaks a thousand words. When you’re on your trip, try and take as many photographs as you can – in the day of digital, we can edit them down later. It’s always best to have too many – you’d be surprised how many are dud when you get home!
If you’ve landed here, you’re probably looking to find out more about Katherine-Louise. Run by me, Kat - put simply I'm a 30 year old who is decidedly normal. My blog is a destination for women just like me - the same interests and aspirations, working our way through the same twists and turns of life. Katherine-Louise is designed to inspire and inform; to give you a break from the norm as well identify with the beauty of routine. A fifteen minute recoup, or an hours vacation, it’s the go-to for Everyday-Joe’s, just like me, who want a few minutes off the radar.