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How to Build an Amazing Travel Blog With WordPress

Who doesn’t love to talk about where they’ve travelled to? If you are a frequent traveller, or just love traveling, you may have thought about writing a Travel Blog but don’t know where to start.

WordPress is the perfect CMS for travel bloggers because it’s easy to set up and there are lots of resources to help. You can create your own travel blog ready for you to share those breathtaking journeys and adventures in no time.

This article will take you through what you need to do to set up your own travel blog and share some themes and plugins that will take your travel blog to the next level and make your stories come alive for your readers. Let’s get cracking!

Examples of Travel Blogs

A screenshot of the Stuck In Customs homepage.

Be inspired and learn from the travel photography of Stuck in Customs

There is no shortage of travel blogs, so it is hard to pick only a couple to highlight. The best travel blogs are beautiful to look at and share a unique perspective on travel.

Stuck in Customs is about travel photography and is breathtaking, while Beers and Beans shares tales of a couple and their dog slowly traveling around the world. Naturally, both of these blogs run on WordPress.

What You’ll Need for Your Travel Blog

Now that we’ve shown you what a travel blog on WordPress can look like, let’s take a look at what you will need to get started:

  • WordPress: Pretty obvious, right? You’ll need it installed either locally or on your web server, and we will explain how you can get that set up below.
  • A theme: Next we will tell you what you should be looking for in a travel blog theme and give you some free and premium suggestions. Just choose one that suits your taste.
  • Plugins: We’ll tell you what plugins you should consider adding to your website.
  • Beautiful photography: Half the fun of travel is the pictures, so you’ll want plenty of photographs on your site, and we’ll show you how to make sure they don’t slow it down.

Nothing too complicated, right? Let’s go!

Setting Up Your Blog

The first step to setting up your blog is to get an instance of WordPress running either locally or online. For WordPress hosting, we highly recommend:

  • WP Engine: Managed hosting that starts at $29 per month, and they handle installs, backups, and updates.
  • Flywheel: Another managed WordPress host, but at $15 per month, it’s great if you are on a budget.
  • Bluehost: Very budget-friendly, starting at $3.49 per month, and they have a quick install option for WordPress.

If instead you want to try a local installation (i.e. without hosting), these articles have you covered:

When you’re ready, you will need to move the site online to your web host, at which point you’ll need this article:

Now you have WordPress set up, what’s next? Let’s take a look at themes.

Choosing a Theme

The Explorable travel blog theme.

An interactive map on the homepage sets the Explorable theme apart

Although it’s easy to change themes in WordPress, you should look at a few different themes before you start – don’t just pick the first one you see. If you are thinking about purchasing a theme (which we recommend), check out our tips for buying the perfect WordPress theme.

When looking for a travel blog theme, you will want to pay attention to the layout and how it uses images, as this will be vital to your storytelling. Also look at whether it has built-in support for maps, as this can add another dimension to your travel stories.

Here some WordPress themes you should definitely consider:

  1. Mesa Free WordPress Theme: This all new free theme from WPExplorer is the perfect way to build your travel blog today. With support for many types of media (image, gallery, audio, video and quote) and a clean masonry grid layout Mesa is perfect for showcasing your adventures.
  2. Explorable Travel Blog Theme:  This premium theme has a unique interactive map for the homepage with points linked to your posts. Plus it’s part of the Elegant Themes bundle so you’ll also get tons of other premium themes (and plugins if you spring for a developer license).
  3. WPVoyager Theme: This bold, modern, premium theme uses elegant photo grids and Google Maps integration to entice your readers. Plus it supports KML trails so you can document your

If you want even more inspiration, we’ve found you a list of over 18 travel blog themes to check out.

Installing Plugins

The Nomad World Map plugin.

Take your readers with you using the Nomad World Map plugin

One major advantage to using WordPress to build your site is the availability of plugins to do just about anything. We do recommend some basic plugins that you should consider installing and activating first on your site, such as Yoast SEO for search engine optimization and Akismet for spam protection. We cover some other options in our article on how to get started blogging.

As you build your travel blog, you may want to do a bit more than just write about the places you’ve been. Maps are a good way to help take your readers with you, and many travel blog themes will include map support. If the one you’ve chosen doesn’t, WordPress has plugins that can help you:

  • Nomad World Map: This free plugin is a great way to show readers your travel itinerary and link posts and images to specific locations. It hasn’t been updated in about a year (which can be a red flag), but it still worked when we put it through its paces. CP Google Maps is another free alternative but is not as user-friendly to set up.
  • Maps Marker Pro: This premium plugin offers a very comprehensive yet user-friendly way to add full-featured maps to your site.
  • Maps Builder Pro: A premium mapping plugin created by WordImpress that enables you to add just about any kind of map to your site.

Using Images

No travel blog would be complete without images of the destinations, and we know you have pictures of your trips. If you want to truly immerse your readers in your travel tales, you will need to have beautiful images of the places you writing about.

The big problem with having images on your website is that they can take up a lot of space, which unfortunately may slow your website down. Your website needs to be fast, especially if your readers want to browse your site on their mobile device.

Image optimization helps images take up as little space on your site as possible, which starts with using the right size and image format. We’ve written a pretty comprehensive guide to optimizing images to help you out, so don’t feel you can’t do this. There are also several WordPress plugins you can use to help optimize image performance.


Creating a travel blog with WordPress is easy, and can be done pretty quickly using a beautiful theme and some plugins. Add your images to support your stories and you’ll be transporting your readers around the world by the weekend!

All you need to do is follow the simple steps we outlined to get started:

  1. Set up WordPress
  2. Choose a theme
  3. Install the right plugins
  4. Use beautiful (and optimized) images

Did you take our advice, follow the steps and finally start your travel blog? We would love to see how you’ll be sharing your next adventure, so share the link below. Or if you have any questions or suggestions, please let us know in the comments section below!

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How to Build an Amazing Travel Blog With WordPress


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