What Made The List Of Most Popular Travel Blog Posts In 2019
It was always interesting when we looked back and saw what was the RetiredAndTravelling most popular travel blog posts in 2019.
We learned that our evergreen content was still popular. In 2019, we hit over 500 blog posts published this year. And when we looked at the top 100 blog posts, we saw that the average time on site was great. And exit rates were low. So people read the whole posts. And then moved to other posts on the site.
Measuring Travel Blog Popularity
We watched our travel blog and social media statistics quite closely. You should not be surprised to read that we used a series of spreadsheets. Most of the blog site traffic numbers came from Google Analytics.
While Google continually tweaked its algorithms, a big change was made in late 2019 and it affected our web site numbers. Google removed older referral sites even though read time was very high for the sites removed. Changes were made in many other parameters being looked at. This created much work as we addressed best practices.
It became clear that we needed to look at handling images better on our site to improve our Google ranking. We loved to share our travel photographs. And our photography always received great comments. So blog posts had lots of pictures. And we kept them at a reasonable size. But site loading time took a hit. As we moved forward, we looked to reduce the file sizes without taking a hit on the quality. Hopefully this will mean that we can keep our blog posts image dense.
The last thing that impacted our web site traffic this year was our travel schedule. We had a very busy travel year in 2019. We were aways almost as much as we were home. And that impacted the time we had to work on blogs and to fully engage in social media. We finished the year very far behind in blog post publishing. Even though we managed to post at least once a week through the year.
When we looked at the RetiredAndTravelling most popular travel blog posts in 2019, some clear favourites were identified.
Everybody Loved A Great Road Trip Story
Year over year, one of our top 10 blog posts detailed our road trip across the U.S. from Toronto to Vancouver, BC. We stopped in many spots along the way. And were so glad we chose to drive. Even if our trip back in the snow was a much faster trip.
In 2019, we did a lot of road trips and these were popular with our readers. We started the year on a 4 week trip up the California coast from San Diego to San Francisco.
The spring took us to British Columbia (BC). Our 4 week road trip in BC started in the Okanagan Valley. We moved west and travelled up the Sunshine Coast. And then explored Vancouver Island for almost 2 weeks. We used this trip as a bit of an advanced scouting trip in case some day we might want to live in BC.
A final road trip in the fall from Utah through Arizona took us to some new and amazing places. We explored the Utah National Parks and then travelled from north to south in Arizona. And it looked like this will turn into a favourite set of blog posts too.
Epic road trips were definitely some of the most popular travel blog posts in 2019.
Portugal Remained A Sought After Destination
There did not seem to be an end to interest in Portugal. We have over 40 posts on our 4 weeks in Portugal. We travelled from the Algarve in the South through Lisbon and up to Porto.
Our stay in the Douro Valley gained lots of interest and emails. Many people looked at train travel or cruising on the Douro Valley. Our post about our road trip in the Douro Valley.
And no investigation of Portugal was complete without considering the Azores Islands. We spent 10 days in the Azores and visited 3 islands. It enchanted us. And we know we will go back.
Our most popular travel blog posts for last year included a large number from our series on Portugal.
Europe Remained A Big Search Topic
While Portugal took the top spot in our readers interest in 2019, not far behind was blog posts about our travels along the Adriatic coast in Italy. So many of the places we visited along the coast are off the more beaten path in Italy. And readers wanted to know what that coast offered.
Blog posts about France and Spain were popular. And we were delighted that people really wanted to read about our adventures in the Canary Islands.
Europe is a steady part of the most popular travel blog posts in 2019.
People Wanted To Escape South To Warmer Climates
A large number of our regular readers are from North America. And when it turns cold in the winter, we all looked for places to escape the cold. So we were not surprised to learn that some of the most popular travel blog posts in 2019 were about our travels in the Caribbean.
When we travelled to the ABC islands (Aruba, Bonaire and Curacao) we had some of our favourite times. The weather was always predictable. And the water was perfect for scuba divers.
Our underwater adventures always seemed to be of interest to readers. Snorkelling in Nassau was a popular topic. The underwater sculptures in Grenada drew interest.
This year we spent 16 days being pampered at the Ritz-Carlton Grand Cayman. This gave us lots of time to explore Grand Cayman. And you wanted to explore too!
Many people looked to cruise in the Caribbean. Both our post on the Southern Caribbean and the Eastern Caribbean drew a lot of readers. And people wanted to use the Caribbean as a starting point for a transatlantic cruise.
We were not at all surprised with the interest in Caribbean travels.
Iconic Travel Spots Were Hit And Miss
We had a lot of interest in some of our travels to iconic travel destinations. People continued to read about our visit to the Taj Mahal at sunrise and sunset. Our trip along the Suez Canal drew some of our highest blog visit counts.
But some other iconic sites we visited drew less attention. Travel in Egypt was still not a big draw for visitors. Tensions with China seemed to keep the interest down for Panda bears, the Terracotta Warriors and the Great Wall of China.
It wasn’t always easy to know that would draw in readers. Or what would make the list of the most popular travel blog posts.
Luxury Travel Blog Posts Always Were Big Draws
Every year we got great blog site traffic for our posts on luxury travel. One year we splurged all our points and enjoyed a shower in the air when we travelled First Class on Emirates. In Canada, people wanted to read about how we travelled in Business Class on Via Rail.
If our individual blog posts on destinations in China did not draw readers, there were a lot of readers who wanted to find out more about our experience when we travelled with Viking Cruises to China.
We shared what we learned about travelling on points and gaining loyalty status. And we ranted about the sad state of many executive lounges.
We hoped our readers enjoyed a peek into some of our luxury travel. That interest put these tales high on the list of most popular travel blog posts in 2019.
Food And Drink Captured Your Interest
We always enjoyed the opportunity to have Afternoon Tea when we travelled. This quaint tradition always created photo opportunities. This year we enjoyed Afternoon Tea at the Ritz-Carlton Montreal and the Ritz-Carlton Grand Cayman. And our blog post on tea and champagne sabrage again drew readers to our post on Afternoon Tea at the St Regis Washington.
We did a lot of wine tasting in 2019. But readers were intrigued with our experience doing ice wine tasting in Niagara On The Lake closer to home. And one of the favourite Portugal blog posts was about our tasting experience with the cherry liqueur Ginja in Obidos.
Our readers followed our tasty food and drink adventures and put these on the list of the most popular travel blog posts in 2019.
We Shared Our Travel Tips
Visitors to RetiredAndTravelling love to read about our travels. But we often got asked for our travel tips. Many of these made the list of the most popular travel blog posts year after year.
People wanted to know about getting connected to the internet when we travelled. And so many were happy we talked about the absolute necessity of travelling with a VPN.
Our travel experiences ranged from our attempt to follow a keto diet on a cruise. To dealing with being robbed in Madrid.
When we posted our 500th travel blog post, people wanted to see if we had any tips from 5 years of blogging. And when we wrapped up our year travelling in 2019, people learned that we will have lots of new content still coming. Hopefully there will be many more favourite travel blog posts coming.
The List Of Favourite Travel Blog Posts Was Long
It was great to look back and see what topics our readers wanted to see. New and older travels drew interest. People read our travel blog to escape to warmer destinations or iconic travel spots. And we know our travel blog posts probably sent people looking for food and drink. It was great to know that some of our favourites showed up on the list of RetiredAndTravelling’s most popular travel blog posts in 2019.
Do you have your favourite? Or a view on what should be the most popular travel blog posts in 2019?
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Congratulations on your posts! It surely an achievement to be able to post more than 500 in a year. Thank you so much for sharing this list. Happy to see some of my favorite posts from your site are included. I love your post about your Portugal trip. 🙂
Clarice, I am glad that some of your favourite posts showed up on this list. Some of them have been popular year over year. Linda
Totally agree with you that a road trip blog seems to gain a lot of interest from followers or people passing by the blog. My top blog posts are on road trips and I cant wait to do some more later this year with my family (I got two to come, one to Italy for 3 weeks and 2 weeks in the Baltics, both trips starting and finishing in London, UK). Strange that you had low views/attention on the China blogs, there were in my top three list for me and seemed to gain a lot of interest. And I am very surprise about Egypt (but that is one country I am yet to get too). Keep it going guys…love following your blog.
Danik, Very interesting that you had great traction on your China blog posts. Maybe I need to promote them more. Glad to know you love the blog. Linda
It looks like more in-depth posts such as those about road trips, cruises and longer stays are generally more popular – I guess they make it easier for others to plan their trips. Portugal and the Azores are particular draw cards for me – it’s great to see where to go off the tourist trail. And of course ANYTHING to do with high tea works for me too 😀
We do hope that our blog posts help people with their planning. We love to share what we have learned. I hope you get to Portugal one day. One of our all time favourite trips. Linda
Really enjoyed this round up of your best performing travel posts in 2019, and how you used Google Analytics and spreadsheets to track this so carefully. Interesting to see what’s popular and what is less so, it’s never what we think it will be!
Kavita, I am glad you enjoyed our round up. Always checking to see what people find interesting. Helps to prioritize what I publish and when. Linda
Great to read it. I sure do agree with most of the your points, I sure agree that many people love reading about road trips, especially the one which you take on some obscure places, that’s what happened to mine as some of my best post were the one done on some hidden places road trips. Great to know that you are doing really great with the website.
Daniel, It was great to know that people love to read about road trips. So many great ones to share. Linda
Congratulations! You did so well with your blogposts as well as your travels. The pictures are so lovely. Portugal is high on my list this year. I would love to do the Caribbean too. Road trip posts are well received always. Since, I am from India, I am glad that your TajMahal post does well too. It is a true gem.
I am so long you liked the rundown of our favourite posts. I hope you get to visit some of these spots. Linda
Firstly, congratulations on completing 500 posts. Yes, google god acts strange sometimes and tracking the GA helps in a great way. This was a great round up of 2019. Yes Europe remains one of the most searched topics and road trips are always great to read. All the best for 2020 as well.
Amrita, Always interesting to know that some of the things that are popular on our travel blog resonate with other travel bloggers. Linda
These are some amazing blog posts! 40 posts on a 4-week trip to Portugal? That is absolutely amazing and a lot of hard work! The Utah road trip and all the other destinations look stunning so I’m not surprised they are well-received.
Eunice, It is easy to see the we loved our travels to Portugal. Every spot we visited was so different. And we wanted to share the love! Linda
I’m impressed with your post! impressive number of posts! Congratulations! It’s so inspiring. It’s great to know which travel posts were popular. We love road trips, too, as we are making our road trip from Alaska to Florida. And we just started the fifth month on travel. From your list, the four weeks in Portugal I like the most. I spent there only a week, and it’s not enough, I hope to back. Your Portugal posts are so detailed! The Azores are still on my list. But most of all I would like to try ice wine tasting.
Agnes, I am glad there are some travel blog post topics that are still on your to-do list! Best wishes for your 2020 travels. Linda
Congrats in reaching that number so far! Undeniably your posts were amazing! No wonder they are popular. I like the road trip, also food and drinks…
Cat, We were happy to see that some posts drew big numbers. And some of our favourite trips too. Linda
Wow! Super congratulations on publishing over 500 posts in 2019! Ofcourse I too loved your roadtrip post, especially the way you had explained the massive change in weather conditions as you kept moving, was really intriguing. I remember that post very well. I remember your Utah road trip too!
We too visited Portugal, but in the end of 2019, but yeah, as you say, I need to visit there again as there’s so much more to see & do! Your post on VPN is in my bookmarks. That’s a great reference post!!
Bhushavali, I am glad some of the favourites were your favourites too. Certainly some of mine. Glad to know that the VPN post is a good reference one. Linda
I totally agree that everyone loves a good road trip story! So I’m going to need to check out some of yours now. I can’t believe that there was such low interest in the Great Wall and the Terracotta Warriors, but I guess the current political climate does make sense as impacting readership.
Kate, I hope you find some favourite blog posts on this list. Certainly some of them seem to resonate year over year. It is interesting to see what is less popular as well. Sometime it is just timing of the post or as you say of the political situation. Linda
Wow this post has made easier for me to select your most popular blog posts in year 2019 and it would be great to read some of your lovely travel stories which are popular too. Your post on Road trip to Duoro valley is my favorite post too. 4 weeks in beautiful Portugal sounds incredible and useful guide by you.
Yukti, Our travels to Portugal were some of our best ever. So I am not surprised they keep being popular. And we wrote so much about Portugal for that trip. Glad some of these are your favourites too. Linda
Wow, Linda, 500 blog posts in a year! You make me feel really bad for not publishing more often. You gave us some very pertinent insights into what makes a post popular. I should look into these. Google’s latest algorithm change affected especially food and travel bloggers.
Anda, the Google game is a never-changing source of frustration. I could not believe that blog posts that were absolutely being read front to back were somehow penalized thru the change. But it makes us keep trying to get better. Linda
That is a unique and lovely way to round up the year. You sure have done some good stat analysis. No doubt travel schedules upset the blog frequency .But then, I sure would not mind burning a few candles to get some good travel while managing to keep up in some ways. Noted some of your interesting posts. I am gonna be looking up Portugal for sure and yes, Taj too – just to see how you found the place. 😀
Ami, I am glad some of the blog posts were of interest to you. Now or when you do travel planning. Some of our favourite trips are represented here! Linda