How to Find the Best Travel Blogs

By Abi King | Blogging

May 22

How to find the best travel blogs - a guide from Inside the Travel Lab

Notes on How to Find the Best Travel Blogs

I’m off travelling next week, so today  I was rummaging about inside my blog performing a little blog maintenance. Updating this, backing up that. It’s the blog equivalent of cancelling the milkman and handing your neighbour a spare key before you leave.

A post-it note reminded me that I’d promised to say a few words about how to find the best travel blogs, so here you go. If you’re not interested in any other travel blogs because you’re already head over heels in love with mine (smooch!) then forget about this and try browsing the other sections instead.

Otherwise, read on.

Finding the Top Travel Blogs – Why is it so difficult?

On the surface, finding great travel blogs to read should be easy. With the help of the mighty Google, not to mention the new, fandangled latest social media gizmo, tracking down a great travel blog should only take a few seconds.

Alas, not so.

A quick google (yes, it’s become a verb) on “the best travel blogs” reveals the following top three results:

1)      An article written in 2005

2)      An article from 2008 that doesn’t seem to know what a travel blog is and includes the review site TripAdvisor

3)      An article written in 2003 proclaiming that most travel blogs run out of material within about a year

An even quicker twitter search throws up lots of tweets from people asking others to vote for them in a “best travel blog” contest. Searches for “good travel writing,” “top travel blogs” and “recommended travel blogs” reveal the same kind of thing.

Finding the Best Travel Blogs To Read for Inspiration & Entertainment

If you’re looking for a great travel blog to read (rather than trying to find a travel blogger to work with) then here’s how to do it: find one blogger whose work you love and see who they recommend and work with.

In the old days (ie about five years ago in blogging terms, bloggers used to post a link roll of their favourite blogs in the sidebar.) Sadly, Google frowned upon that so things have changed a little.

But still.

Bloggers share plenty of work across their social networks. So if you follow me on Twitter or Pinterest or Facebook, for example, you will see me share work from other bloggers I respect. It’s like a visual word of mouth recommendation. Plus, the algorithms behind these social media behemoths will then auto suggest other blogs for you to follow.

Sometimes these are somewhat, er, hit and miss, but they’re not usually too bad.

Another good place to go is Bloglovin’ This is a nice, sleek way to read blogs in general – and again it gives you suggested blogs to follow. Unfortunately, it’s based more on blogger subscriber numbers rather than finely matched interests but it is a) a good place to start and b) bloggers can create lists of other bloggers there.

A similar, though less pretty, program is called Feedly. You can find a list of great travel blogs here, for example.

Instagram is a gorgeous place to hang out but it’s seen as a.bad.thing to share other people’s work as your own on instagram. So that won’t help much.

Finally, check out the Lonely Planet Pathfinders team (disclosure, I’m one of their featured bloggers.) And if your idea of Lonely Planet is cheap backpacking for students then it’s time to move on. They have ;-) They now span luxury to budget and solo to family travel. In a sense, the company has grown up along with the founders.

Read and enjoy!

Brunch and creativity at the Artist Residence London - making notes on how to find the best travel blogs

Finding the Best Travel Blogs – To Work With

In a sense, the procedure is pretty much the same. I’ve seen far too many companies get over-excited at lists and statistics to the point where they are desperate to work with bloggers on projects that have nothing to do with the kind of thing the blogger writes about. Backpackers in Michelin restaurants, independent travellers on rigidly fixed tours.

That said, if money’s involved, then you do need to look at the numbers.

Finding the Best Travel Blogs by Numbers

These days you’ll find several different scoring systems, each with their benefits and each with their flaws. Don’t get too despondent, though. These indicators still give you far more information than the old “column inches” approach.

Website Traffic

Google Analytics is generally regarded as the industry standard, although many other metrics are used. Google Analytics statistics are private, however, a special secret between the almighty G and the humble travel blogger. Alexa and Compete provide the next best public measure of website traffic.

Loyal Audiences

The number of email, RSS and Facebook subscribers reflect, to some extent, the loyalty of readers.

Social Media Measures

Klout attempts to measure a blogger’s “influence” in social media (principally on Twitter and Facebook.) It’s not perfect but it’s a start.

Yet, it’s time consuming to go through each of those metrics yourself. Which brings me on to the next method…

Lists of the Best Travel Blogs

There are probably as many, if not more, lists ranking travel blogs than there are travel blogs themselves. Each with their own generous helping of “magic dust,” otherwise known as “I like them, so you should too (see above method.)”

While not perfect, lists based on statistics do give you a clearer idea of where a travel blog stands in relation to its peers. Here are the most respected statistic-based lists:

Top Travel Blog Lists Based on Statistics

The Top 150 General Travel Blogs – Compete, Alexa, RSS Subscribers, Google PageRank, Yahoo & Google Indexed Pages

100 Top Travel Blogs by Traffic – Compete & Google Ad Planner

Top 50 Travel Blogs from Travelocafe – Combining site visitors and social media presence

Top Travel Blog Lists – UK Based & Niche

Vuelio – Top 10 UK Travel Blogs

Vuelio – Top 10 UK Luxury Travel Blogs

That’s it! I’d be happy to add any others to the list as long as they’re based on objective metrics. Thanks for stopping by – and happy reading!

Hiring Someone to Find the Best Travel Blog for You

If you haven’t gathered already, it can be a lot of work to find the best travel blog for your brand. And that’s where hiring someone can make sense. While blogger agents are prolific for other niches, for travel blogs, they are not so well established.

Instead, you’ll find groups of blogger collectives or companies that put together projects involving travel bloggers.

Some are based according to region, like the Nordic Blogger’s Collective (Nordic) and Captivate (UK – also, another disclosure, I’m a director.)

iAmbassador, for example, is global and covers all niches whereas Captivate focuses on high quality travel blogs for the over 30s.

How to Find the Best Travel Blogs: A Summary

1) Forget searching on Google

2) Follow personal recommendations from travel bloggers you respect

3) Use statistic-based lists

4) Hire someone with the necessary expertise

Find more information about working with bloggers here.

Find out more about working with Inside the Travel Lab here.

How to find the best travel blogs - a useful list for inspirational reading and professional partnerships. Bookmark now, read later.
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About the Author

Abigail King is an award-winning writer and author who swapped a successful career as a hospital doctor for a life on the road. With over 60 countries under her belt, she's worked for Lonely Planet, the BBC, National Geographic Traveller and more. She is passionate about sustainable tourism and was invited to speak on the subject at the EU-China High Level summit at the UNESCO Headquarters in Paris.Here she writes about food, travel and history and she invites you to pull up a chair and relax. Let's travel more and think more. Welcome!

  • Angela says:

    That’s quite a comprehensive post on finding good travel blogs! I spend a lot of time reading travel blogs and I have to say that I find new interesting ones every day. And if I have to be completely honest, sometimes I trust bloggers more than corporate travel media industry…

    • Abi says:

      And I could have written much more on the subject! I agree – there are so many interesting travel blogs out there but I remember that when I started I didn’t know where to look to find them. Happy travels!

  • liv says:

    Since the whole genre is a rather competitive ad market, about the only way to find genuine content is to know that the author has actually been there. Pictures and image search can do a lot for you if you can tell a tourist photo from a stock photo.

  • Please do me a favor and take a look at my blog, Off the Beaten Path. I think you will find it interesting. Thanks

    Stan Diamond

  • Hi all,
    Great idea putting this list together. OE Travel Blogs offers unbiased travel reviews and advice from like minded travellers that have been there and done that! First hand reviews and advice from passionate travellers sharing their experiences and recommendations. OE stands for Overseas Experience. Visit us and see what we’re talking about.
    Cheers
    Nick

  • James Cook says:

    Thanks for the post I am just getting my head around Alexa at the moment so hopefully my rank will improve :)

    • Abi says:

      Don’t get too hung up on the numbers – as long as the trend is going the way you want! Good luck.

  • Andy says:

    Great advice here, thanks. Will be going through the above resources now; I have also had the same problems with information overload, especially for more ‘niche’ travel blogs. Personally if I never see another website filled with self-congratulatory trip reports by Australian couples ‘doing Europe’ I won’t lose any sleep…finding sites for grown-ups who are done with the whole budget/backpacking/bumming around thing is more of a struggle, hence the one I started. It’s early days yet but the response has been positive; will be searching your site for more info now :-)

    • Abi says:

      Ah, well the great thing about the web is that there’s room for everyone! I know quite a few blogs who have moved beyond/never covered backpacking…Velvet Escape springs to mind, also 501 Places, Isabelle’s Travel, Aviators and a Camera, Solo Traveler, Almost Fearless, Quirky Traveller, My Itchy Travel Feet…And, of course, Inside the Travel Lab! ;) Good luck with your project- let us know how you get on!

  • Abi says:

    Glad you found it useful. Cheers.

  • Hi Abi, I am involved in a project to research for influential travel bloggers (I believe we approached you as well ;) – and I only found out about this article as I google on things! Very comprehensive list, and thank you so much for sharing this. I am definitely bookmarking this.

    Safe travels!

    • Abi says:

      You’re welcome – and thanks for thinking of me!

  • Hi Abi. Great post. I have just started blogging seriously and I discover fantastic blogs and travel websites every day, which are my inspiration and motivation to carry on blogging and sharing my travel experience and adventures. Looks like most of the bloggers quit them jobs for travels or swapped their career for being on the road. We are so different, but at the same time we have so much in common. Thanks for sharing and wish you happy and safe travels every day :-)

    • Abi says:

      Yes, we are a mixed bunch. Good luck with your work and safe travels to you too.

    • Paul says:

      Agness, I’m relatively new to blogging too and you really do realise how difficult it is to find some of these great blogs. There are lots that I read, but barely a day goes by when I don’t discover some new one that has been running for years that I was completely unaware of!

  • leanne drew says:

    So happy to have found your site, good ol Google. I am also a fairly new blogger, promoting my local area for tourists that pass through. We miss out a bit on the glossy promotions. I’m not the one on an adventure, but want to help those that are enjoy the hidden secrets around here. . If that makes any sense? Im also stalking web site layouts lol.. yours looks great! Look forward to more updates via email subscription. Cheers

    • Abi King says:

      That makes lots of sense! And that’s one of the good things about the internet – there’s a chance for every story to be heard. Good luck!

  • Rob says:

    I’ve recently found that the top 10 travel pages on Technorati have some excellent blogs to discover! Thanks for sharing your suggestions.

  • elina sara says:

    Very nice explanation, Before found you’r blog, i was really confused which travel blog is good for me. But now everything is cleared.

  • Stephen John says:

    Gr8 advice over here. thanks for your post.

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