I love to travel and I love to journal, so keeping a record of my thoughts and memories while on adventures is an intertwined creative process. But deciding which notebook to use as a travel journal can be pretty difficult when there are so many options. To help you out I’ve put together my ultimate guide to choosing the best travel journal notebook.

This post covers key questions to think about when choosing a notebook to use as a travel journal, and reviews some of the best notebooks available at the moment.

Picture of my desk with various filled out travel journal notebooks

What do you need from a travel journal notebook?

The most important part of choosing the best notebook for your travel journal is to figure out what you need from a journal. Think about your answers to the following questions, and keep them in mind as you look at the various journals available.

  1. Do you plan to take your journal with you on your trip? (Consider weight and size)
  2. How long will your trip be? Or will you use the same journal for multiple trips? (Consider number of pages)
  3. Will you journal daily, weekly, or thematically? (Consider both number of pages and page layout)
  4. What mediums will you use – pens/paint/glue? (Consider page weight/gsm, and paper type ie. fountain pen-friendly)
  5. What is your budget? (Consider cost of notebook and materials)
Picture of my desk at an angle with various filled out travel journal notebooks

Travel journal supplies tested:

Highlighter: J.Burrows Pastel
Pigment ink marker: Copic Multiliner Marker 0.5 – Black
Rollerball pen: Uni-Ball Micro Deluxe Rollerball Pen 0.5 – Black
Fountain pen: Kaweco Classic Sport Fountain Pen – Medium Nib *
Fountain pen ink: Herbin Fountain Pen Ink – Lierre Sauvage (Green Ivy)
Watercolour paint: Daler-Rowney Aquafine Travel Watercolor Set
Ball point pen: Kikki-K Everyday Gel Pen (Designs change seasonally)
Stamp pad ink: Tsukineko VersaColor 174 Charcoal
Glue: UHU Blu Stick
Double sided tape: X-press It Double Sided Tape Runner

Testing travel journal notebooks:

Watch now: Travel Journal Notebook review video (fully captioned)

Discover the six travel journal notebooks I tested. Timestamps are listed if you would like to jump straight to a review of a particular notebook in the video, or you can continue reading for more details.
[1:35] Nuuna – Notebook Voyager M*
[5.38] Kunisawa – Find Notebook*
[8:04] Milligram – Everyday Notebooks*
[11:21] The School of Life – The Feminist Notebooks*
[14:32] The Traveler’s Company – Traveler’s Notebook, large
[19:20] Delfonics – Rollbahn, medium

Travel journal notebook test – detailed comparison

If you’re unsure of what terms such as ‘ghosting’ and ‘bleed through’ mean, you can find out more here.

Nuuna – Notebook Voyager M

Size: Medium – 13 x 20 x 1.6 cm
Number of pages: 176
Page style: 3.5 mm grey dot grid, rounded corners
Paper weight: 120 gsm Swedish Munken paper
Price: $$$
Made in: Germany
Link: Nuuna – Notebook Voyager M*
Special features: Elastic strap with pen and phone holder, numbered pages, blank page margins, and metallic page edges.

Ghosting: Moderate
Bleed through: Small amount with highlighter, fountain pen and pigment ink marker
Fountain pen: Small amount of feathering
Watercolour: Suitable with small amounts of water, small amount of paper buckling

Best for: The frequent traveler. Sturdy construction, good all-round paper.

Screenshot from my video of the Nuuna notebook with examples of different drawing mediums.

Kunisawa – Find Notebook

Size: A5 – 21 x 14.5 cm
Number of pages: 80
Page style: 5 mm grid
Paper weight/gsm: Unknown gsm, Japanese Foolscap paper
Price: $$
Made in: Japan
Link: Kunisawa – Find Notebook*
Special features: Copper gilt page edges.

Ghosting: Moderate
Bleed through: Small amount with fountain pen and rollerball pen
Fountain pen: Small amount of feathering
Watercolour: Not suitable, significant buckling

Best for: Longer reflections and larger sketches or mixed media collage.

Screenshot from my video of the Kunisawa notebook with examples of different drawing mediums.

Milligram – Everyday Notebooks*

Size: A5 – 21 x 14.5 cm
Number of pages: 80 pages (2 x notebooks per set)
Page style: Blank
Paper weight/gsm: 85 gsm Italian milled Fabriano Boutique Bioprima paper
Price: $$
Made in: Taiwan
Link: Milligram – Everyday Notebooks*
Special features: Mint and grey covers with foil details

Ghosting: High
Bleed through: Very small amount from fountain pen and pigment ink marker
Fountain pen: No feathering
Watercolour: Not suitable, significant buckling and bleed through

Best for: Creative journaling unrestrained by lines.

Screenshot from my video of the Milligram notebook with examples of different drawing mediums.

The School of Life – The Feminist Notebooks*

Size: B6 – 12.5 x 18cm
Number of pages: 64 (3 x notebooks per set)
Page style: Blank/dot grid/ruled lines (1 of each)
Paper weight/gsm: Unknown
Price: $$$
Made in: China
Link: The School of Life – The Feminist Notebooks*
Special features: Biographical information about one of three Feminist thinkers in each of the notebooks, yellow stitched binding.

Ghosting: None
Bleed through: None
Fountain pen: High amount of feathering
Watercolour: Suitable with small amounts of water, small amount of paper buckling

Best for: Mixed media journaling, except fountain pens.

Screenshot from my video of the School of Life notebook with examples of different drawing mediums.

The Traveler’s Company – Traveler’s Notebook, large

Size: 11 x 21cm
Number of pages: 64 pages (28 diary spreads)
Page style: Undated Weekly Diary layout on left. Grid memo notes page on right
Paper weight/gsm: Unknown
Price: $$
Made in: Japan
Link: The Traveler’s Company – Traveler’s Notebook, large
Special features: Intro pages featuring annual planner. Personal info section at rear, fits inside Traveler’s Company large covers

Ghosting: Low
Bleed through: Small amount with rollerball pen applied heavily
Fountain pen: No feathering
Watercolour: Suitable with small amounts of water, small amount of paper buckling

Best for: Scheduling, planning and memo note writing.

Screenshot from my video of the Traveler's Company notebook with examples of different drawing mediums.

Delfonics – Rollbahn, medium

Size: Medium – 11.2 x 13.8cm
Number of pages: 120
Page style: 5 mm grid
Paper weight/gsm: 70 gsm
Price: $
Made in: Japan
Link: Delfonics – Rollbahn, medium
Special features: Perforated pages, elastic closure, 5 plastic pockets, metal spiral binding

Ghosting: Moderate
Bleed through: None
Fountain pen: No feathering
Watercolour: Not suitable, significant buckling of paper

Best for: Note taking, small sketches, staying organised. Budget friendly.

Screenshot from my video of the Delfonics notebook with examples of different drawing mediums.

Keen to learn more about journaling? Check out my other journaling posts and videos.

#gifted The products listed with an * indicates they were gifted to me by Milligram. This post and associated video are part of an unpaid collaboration. The links above are not affiliate, and I do not receive a commission from any sales.

Tamsien - Babbling Books
Photographer, stylist, blogger, and digital influencer from Melbourne Australia. Avid reader and lover of creative journaling.

2 Comments

  1. I’ve never watched a journaling video before… this was so much fun! I’m fairly sure I’m going to die under a pile of gorgeous, barely used notebooks….however your video is sparking that creative inspiration I’ve been missing! Now I can look forward to dying under a pile of thoroughly used notebooks! 😅

    1. Thank you so much for your lovely comment Nat, I’m delighted to have been your introduction to the world of journaling videos! I love watching them as much as I love making them – if you want to watch even more fun and inspiring ones definitely check out my YouTube channel or just search journaling – there are so many creative and inspiring creators out there to help you fill those notebooks!

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