Travel writing and blogging is becoming as popular as travel itself, and today every John and Sally with an ounce of decent writing skills wants to be able to share their travel diaries with the world.
And why not? I believe that the more travel writers there are, the better the field of travel writing gets. Variety and diversity make for a richer experience for everyone.
Of course, not everyone is cut out to be a great travel writer. Some will be better than others. And the ones who are just starting out can always learn from the pros.
With that in mind, we thought an expert roundup of travel writing tips from the pros would be a great way to give new writers an introduction to the craft of travel writing.
So we asked some of the best travel bloggers, “What is the most important skill for a travel writer to have?” Here are the answers they sent us.
Engagement. It’s one this to write well, but is the post written to engage the reader and keep them committed to reading to the end? The most important and interesting information should go first. And the beginning intro/paragraph is the most important, along with the cover photo.
A passion for travel. To be a travel blogger, or just to focus on list style articles, is more focused on research and details. To be a great travel writer and really engage the audience I believe needs a true passion for travel. You have to convey the details that capture the reader and draw them into the story, the place and the people you have met. If you haven’t personally felt that passion when you are there on the ground it will be very hard to get the reader to feel it too.
I believe the most important skill for a travel writer is how to express the way he/she felt while visiting a destination or indulging in an experience. Anybody can write about the top 10 things to do in a particular destination. But, a travel writer should be able to share the feelings which would transport the reader to that particular time and place. If I am visiting a destination and interacting with the locals, I write about how happy it made me. If I am revisiting a place which I visited as a child, I write how the nostalgia left me awash with feelings. These days, amidst a storm of lists by every other travel publication, I believe expressing your feelings through a travel write-up can really help a writer stand out.
To bring a place alive to readers, to capture the soul of a destination – increasingly, travel writing has become all about “I went there and I saw this and I ate this”, but there is so much more to it. Good travel writing is less narrative and more descriptive in nature, and the greatest compliment a travel writer can get is that their story transported the reader to the destination, or made them want to visit the place.
Most people would snort at me for saying this, but keyword research skills! Knowing how to do keyword research for SEO is important. This way you can find out what questions people are asking and what they want to know, then you can create content for them! For me, writing is about passing on information that others find useful.
Travel writers need to bring their audience along for the ride, by adding details to posts. Appeal to your reader’s imagination by picturing your journeys. Add details to these pictures, painting a vivid image that makes readers feel like they are the ones travelling.
In my opinion, the most important skill for a travel writer is to feel a place, sense its pulse, so that you can put that feeling into words. People respond better to heartfelt writing.
The ability to transport the reader to the place you’re describing.
Observe sharply and relate insightfully
I think all these tips are important to keep in mind. What do you think? If you’re a travel blogger and would you like your travel writing tip added to this list, email us at avast (at) ahoymatey (dot) blog.