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It Ain’t Just Words: 5 Unique Ways To Improve Travel Articles

If a picture is worth 1000 words, using multimedia in your travel writing speaks volumes.

Thanks to numerous open source applications, travel writers can now quickly and easily include video, timelines, data visualizations, and other interactive media directly into their travel articles.

The following lists five indispensable tools for travel writers looking to add content in new and exciting ways:

Umapperumapper

Umapper [1] makes it simple to customize maps, which is especially useful for travel writers covering numerous locations in their piece.

For example, if you’re writing an article on US road trips, you can create an interactive map of your route.

Umapper also lets you include images, annotations and video within your maps.

For example, if you’re doing a travel piece on cooking schools in France, you can record a short video at each school and add it atop the map.

Dipitydipity

Dipity [2] creates timelines in just a few simple clicks. It seamlessly integrates video, audio, images, text, links, social media, location and timestamps.

You can either create your own or search for existing timelines. This is a huge timesaver for travel writers looking to add high-quality background information.

For example, if you are doing a travel piece on Russia, you might want to include this timeline on Russian history. [3]

Many Eyesmanyeyes

Created and maintained by IBM, Many Eyes [4] lets you take your data and publish it in interesting new visualizations.

For example, let’s say you’re researching the average travel expenditure per country on tourism.

After finding the data online, simply upload it to Many Eyes and create a global map like this [5].

As you drag your mouse across the screen you’ll notice each country pops up. This
provides an interactive backdrop to your travel piece.

Social Camsocialcam

Socialcam [6] is a mobile app lets you instantly upload videos from your smartphone to blogs, Facebook, Twitter and other social media sites.

If you’re doing a piece on the top New York City bars, simply record a short snippet of each bar and upload it using this app.

The ability to upload videos to social networks make Socialcam a must-have for any video-blogger or journalist.

Shrink the Web

Shrink the Web [7] allows you to quickly create snapshots of websites which can then be added into your article.

The site saves significant amounts of time when reviewing websites in a blog post (like this one for example); plus, it adds a nice visual appeal to your stories.

So there you have it: five easy ways to improve the look and feel of your travel articles. Did we miss any? Leave your own favorite tools below in the comments section.

~ Adam

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