Travel Planning What to Pack

9 Places You Can Look for Travel Inspiration

Researching potential destinations before setting out on your next holiday can significantly enhance your travel experience and make it something more out of the ordinary. Make an effort to curate a list of potential destinations that align with your interests, budget, and expectations, and you may find yourself being more purposeful about your travel plans in the way you always needed to be.

Read along for some sources of travel inspiration that can help you decide on the perfect destination and itinerary for your next holiday:

1) Social Media Platforms

Social media platforms are a treasure trove of travel inspiration, and each may offer a different visual feast of beautiful destinations and unique experiences. Instagram, in particular, is a powerful tool for discovering new places. I love searching specific geotag locations of different areas in the cities I’m visiting to get a feel for it and to find cute coffee shops, fun restaurants, things to see, etc. The ‘Save’ feature is super helpful in organizing different places in location specific folders.

YouTube, meanwhile, offers a more immersive experience through travel vlogs and travel shows. Here, you can get a more in depth glimpse into the daily life and attractions of various destinations. PInterest is also an amazing treasure chest of travel inspo that leads you to in depth blog posts to help you plan. I love creating boards with outfit inspo inspired by the color palette of the destination to help me pack better.  Many of the pins lead you to website  to shop leggings and tops, etc.

2) Online Travel Agency Websites

Online travel agency (OTA) websites re excellent resources for discovering new travel destinations. These sites often feature curated lists of popular and trending destinations, complete with user reviews and ratings.

Browse these websites to find exclusive deals, last-minute offers, and package vacations that suit your preferences. You can also check a classic platform like TripAdvisor for detailed reviews and traveler photos that will serve as good references for what you can expect from different locations.

3) Hotel and Resort Websites

If you have a loose idea of a place you want to visit, you can base your decision on your choice of accommodation. In particular, look through websites or social media accounts of hotels and resorts in that location and determine which type of accommodation will offer you the best vantage point.

Luxury and boutique hotels often showcase their best amenities and nearby attractions on their websites and social media pages. This information can give you a pretty good sense of the local culture and activities available to you with the least amount of stress. Many resorts also maintain blogs that highlight events, local festivals, and hidden gems in the area that you may want to explore.

4) Travel Fairs and Expos

Local and international travel expos can be incredibly inspiring to travelers as well. These events bring together travel experts, tour operators, and destination representatives under one roof. Attend one to gather brochures, watch presentations, and speak directly with travel professionals and get firsthand information about various destinations. Travel fairs also often feature exclusive deals and discounts, making them great starting points for planning and booking your next trips.

5) Movies and TV Shows

Are you perhaps interested in the settings you see on the TV? In that case, movies and TV shows set in exotic locations might ignite your desire to explore new places. Travel documentaries like Planet Earth, Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown, and Our Planet, for example, showcase the beauty and diversity of our world, providing a deep dive into different cultures and landscapes.
Feature films such as The Beach (Thailand), Eat, Pray, Love (Italy, India, Indonesia), and The Secret Life of Walter Mitty (Iceland) may also inspire you to visit the breathtaking locations where they were filmed.

6) Books and Travel Guides

Travel literature and guidebooks remain invaluable resources for planning some of the most memorable trips. Books like Wild and In Patagonia can spark your adventurous spirit and encourage you to explore off-the-beaten-path destinations.
Guidebooks from Lonely Planet, Fodor’s, and Rick Steves, among others, can also provide you with comprehensive information on everything from top attractions to local cuisine, which can be quite helpful in planning a well-rounded itinerary.

7) Travel Blogs, Websites, and Magazines

Personal travel blog insider guides like our comprehensive Cape Town post are rich sources of inspiration and practical advice. There’s no shortage of bloggers who want to share detailed accounts of their travels, complete with tips, itineraries, and personal anecdotes.

8) Travel Communities and Forums

You also have the opportunity to engage with travel communities or forums to connect you with like-minded individuals and to help you gather personalized travel advice. Online platforms like Reddit (r/travel) and TripAdvisor forums are great for asking questions and reading up on travel experiences that reflect your ideal ones. Also consider joining local travel clubs and meetup groups to find inspiration and make new travel buddies.

9) Personal Recommendations

Sometimes, the best travel inspiration can come from people you know. Talk to friends and family about their favorite travel experiences to get firsthand insights and tips. There’s also no harm in consulting with local travel agents for personalized advice and access to exclusive deals that can make your travel adventures both more fun and more affordable.

As seen above, there’s no shortage of places where you can find travel inspiration. Each source mentioned on this list can offer you something fresh and new in terms of planning your next adventure. Even before you indulge your wanderlust, use these sources to discover something new about a particular destination or culture—and let them ignite a spark for your next great journey.

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