by Chris Guld, Geeks on Tour
A travel blog without a map is like cake without icing! It’s good, but not as good as it should be. And, sometimes don’t you want just the icing?! A travel map can give your readers everything they want to know. Then, if they want more, they can click on a marker and follow the links to your blog posts!
When we started our fulltime RV travels back in 2003 I wanted some way to keep track of where we’d been so I started a blog, using the free tool from Google called Blogger.com. Nearly 2,000 posts later, I’m still writing in that blog. I even have a hard-bound book made of each year and they sit on a shelf in our living room now – a constant reminder of all the adventures we’ve had and a great way to spend a lazy afternoon. See this past article about how to make books from your blogger blog: Save your Blog! Get a Printable Copy
Blog posts are where I write our stories, but maps are essential for the visual experience of where we traveled. I make a map for each year of our travels and I put them on a separate page of the blog. Using the free MyMaps tool from Google, each marker on the map is interactive. When you click on it, you can see photos and/or text.
Using maps as a blog navigation tool
Map markers can contain text. In addition to writing a short description of the spot, text can be used to insert links. Those links can be to your blog posts about that place. If you use this feature a lot, your map can become a table of contents for your blog.
For example, if you click the map above, you’ll be taken to the full interactive map. See the gold marker in North Florida? Click that and you’ll see some photos about the place. You should also see a link to our blog post. Click that and you’ll be taken to our blog and the post about our stay at that place. Many markers on this map link to a blog post. Try #3 in Raleigh, NC, or #6 in New York City.
You might say that this sounds like a lot of work. It certainly does take some time, but if you love looking at your photos and your maps as much as I do, it is truly a labor of love. If you want to learn how to make blogs and maps using the tools we recommend, we have Learning Guides for Geeks on Tour members. We have also covered these topics in our free YouTube show, “What Does This Button Do?”
Here’s the first Blogger lesson, from GeeksOnTour.com for free:
Free “Button Shows” on these topics
At GeeksOnTour.com we livestream a YouTube show called What Does This Button Do. Each episode we have a beginner’s lesson on a different technology topic of interest to travelers. Here are a few on maps and blogs.
- Episode 176: How to make a map with Google My Maps
- Episode 161: How to remember your travels with photos, maps, and a Blog
- Episode 123: How to make a blog
Chris Guld is President and Teacher-in-Chief at GeeksOnTour.com. She and her husband, Jim, produce a free weekly YouTube show called What Does This Button Do? They have been Fulltime RVers, popular seminar presenters at RV Rallies, and regular contributors to RVTravel.com, for many years.