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WIN a 120 Page MILK Archival Photo Book Valued at  $209 USD!

I’ve always said that if I was caught in a house fire I would go for the photo albums first. Photo albums, laptop, hard drive, and then get the hell out of the house. I wouldn’t save the Eiffel Tower statue on my mantle-piece, or the Venetian mask hanging on the wall. Nor would I bother with my wardrobe. I can buy new clothes later or steal from my sisters if need be.

Because when push comes to shove, the souvenirs I’ve collected over the years can be replaced. And if I’m honest, half of them are destined for a box in my parents basement anyway. But photos – they can never be replaced. And I’ve learnt that the hard way.

Photos are the Best Souvenir

I’ve always said that photos are the best souvenir. Because nothing plastic can bring as much joy as a photo can. Sure, a snow globe or a key chain might represent a country or place you’ve been, but it’s not able to capture the moment like a photo can. Not able to remind you who you shared the moment with, or preserve the emotion you felt at the time.

And we do need reminding – over the years I’ve found that even the most precious moments in our lives have a tendency to slip away. Like the seven grueling days I spent climbing Mt Kilimanjaro, where I stood proudly on the highest point in Africa, after the most challenging hike of my life.

I remember that I reached the top of the mountain, and remember that it was tough as all hell. But I forget the smaller details of the experience, and need prompts to recall the journey I went through for each of the seven days. 7 years later, I’m only able to travel back to that moment through my photos which captured the raw emotion of each day.

Kilimanjaro 2010

There’s nothing more valuable than a photo. They’re the only thing we have with the power to transport us back in time.

But Photos Also Fade Away

Mike and I have 10 years and over 45 countries worth of cherished memories, each moment having defined our lives along the way. But just like our memories, the thousands of photographs we accumulate also have a habit of fading away.

They’re always accessible of course, sitting there on the cloud, but just like the Eiffel Tower statue collecting dust in my parents basement, we forget that they’re sitting there saved. So we’ve started to favor print over pixels, and put our most cherished photographs into beautiful books. Because these moments deserve to be printed. They’re the most valuable thing I’ve got.

To preserve our travel photography we’ve teamed up with MILK Books, a company who produce custom photo books and albums created with archival-quality materials to last for at least 100 years (they believe that some moments should last longer than a lifetime). And to kick start the new year, we’re give away a beautiful 120 page archival medium photo book so you can preserve your memories too!

How To Preserve Your Travel Photography in Beautiful Photo Books

With the freedom and flexibility to drag and drop our photos into the MILK platform and build a custom book any way we saw fit, it was only a few hours before we hit ship on a gorgeous book full of travel memories.

Designing a beautiful book is effortless, as their team of designers has created over 2,000 editorial templates to help easily create a publisher-quality book.

You can choose from ten elegant cover options in linen, buckram or wibalin, and as the books are are invisibly bound along the spine to lie perfectly flat, we were able to create stunning panoramic spreads.

Drag & Drop into a Suite of Editorial Templates

MILK Books Photo Book

MILK Books Photo Book

Create Stunning Panoramic Spreads

MILK Books Photo Book

Final Product: Bound to Last

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So here’s to always choosing print over pixels, watching more sunsets than Netflix, and creating moments that are truly worth celebrating.

Create Your Own

WIN a 120 Page MILK Archival Medium Photo Book

Want one? We know you do! In partnership with MILK Books, we’re giving away a 120 page archival medium photo book! Can’t wait for the competition to end? Head to http://www2.milkbooks.com to create one now.

Competition is open to residents of all countries, and runs until 11:59PM 23rd January 2017 Pacific Time (US & Canada). Please read the terms and conditions for further competition details.

120 Page MILK Archival Medium Photo Book

CAMERA GEAR WE USE & RECOMMEND. CLICK PHOTO ↓

Nikon D5300 24.2 MP CMOS Digital SLR Camera

Canon PowerShot SX50 HS 12MP Digital Camera

ZoMei Z818 Light Weight Heavy Duty Portable Travel Tripod

INSPIRED?! PIN THIS TO YOUR TRAVEL PINTEREST BOARDS ↓

Megan is an Australian Journalist and award-winning travel writer who has been blogging since 2007. Her husband Mike is the American naturalist and wildlife photographer behind Waking Up Wild; a website dedicated to opening your eyes to the wild & natural world.

Committed to bringing you the best in adventure travel from all around the globe, there is no mountain too high, and no fete too extreme! They haven’t been everywhere, but it’s on their list.

Follow their journey on Facebook, TwitterYouTube, Pinterest and Instagram.

    50 Comments

  1. Beautiful books! I have memories from a recent trip to Greenland that I need to capture in an album.

    • MILK Books really are beautiful – they’ve done a great job at creating a stunning range of products 🙂

      Greenland sounds epic! Those shots definitely deserve to be in an album! Good luck in the comp!

  2. What an amazing way to keep all your travel memories in one place. Love this!

    • Absolutely! We’re starting to see a trend in prioritizing print over pixels … it’s all the rage!

  3. I would love to do it for all my travels 🙂

    • Good luck in the comp! MILK Books are a wonderful way to preserve your travel memories!

  4. I take so many photos but rarely print them. Would love to turn them into a book!

    • We’re the same! We have thousands! But it’s so much nicer looking through them in an album than it is clicking through on the computer … something about the feeling of a beautiful book in your hands! Good luck in the giveaway!

  5. Totally agree with this. I too have lost photos from crashed hard drives so I know that pain as well. I find that even though most of my photos will never make it to Facebook, my blog, or even be printed for that matter, each folder of photos tells a story in a way that words and memories can’t. I’ve also been known to do the photo book thing as well, it’s just such a better way to not only show friends photos of a trip, but also to reminisce as well.

    • Sorry to hear you’ve lost photos in the past Luke – it’s the worst feeling!!

      I agree with you – even those that don’t make it online or into print, they always tell a story and can instantly transport you back to the moment.

      If I have the choice, photo books definitely win over viewing our photos digitally 🙂

  6. Great tips! I’ve done a photo book once before and loved it but I really like that these are 120 pages long…that is a real book! I’ve been travelling for the last 2 years so I’m sure I could rustle up enough photos to fill all those pages!

    • Thanks Laura 🙂 Yes, 120 pages is legit! Can hold many memories in that kind of a book. Good luck in the giveaway 🙂

  7. I started doing annual calendars to remind me of some of our key moments from the prior year and have done albums for super special trips. I think you are right though we tend to forget what is in the cloud so maybe every now and again I need to have a memory party and drag them all out

    • Annual calendars are a fabulous idea! And a great way to remember special moments every day.

      It’s always awesome sitting down and spending some time in memory lane 🙂

  8. Can’t speak highly enough of this product or the need to print out our memories. I’ve been doing photobooks for many years. I love that we live in a world where taking photos is so easy – for everyone – but the world is losing touch with their memories. Like you, I know exactly where our hard drive backups are of our digital images. That fire proof safe is the first thing we’d grab. Until very recently I owned my own small business that made digital photobooks. Now that it’s over, I’m looking for a new provider so will absolutely check these guys out. I’ve got several books that are overdue.

    • Glad to hear that you’re also a fan of photo books Kerri! I find having something physical to flip through is always so much nicer than scrolling through them digitally. And yes, living in a world now with so much opportunity and where everyone’s lives seem so fast paced, it’s becoming very easy to lose touch with our memories, which is a sad thing. So albums are fantastic for preserving that 🙂

      MILK Books are fabulous – if you’re looking for a new provider, I can highly recommend them 🙂

      Happy travels!

  9. I agree, my travel photos are absolutely my most prized possession. I once got pickpocketed in Vietnam, and lost all of my Myanmar photos. I wasn’t really upset about losing the phone, but I was crushed that I lost all of my photos. I was thinking about printing out my photos recently, I’ll look into this! Thanks for the great post.

    • So sorry to hear that you lost your photos from Myanmar Michael 🙁 I agree – it’s the worst feeling in the world – phones can be replaced, but photos can’t.

      Hopefully the memories from the trip live on regardless 🙂

  10. Ahh this is so cool! I’ve been thinking of getting a book like this for my coffee table (ok, dresser drawer until I have a coffee table). I like that there are different formatting options and the binding materials are really classic. How have you organized your book(s)? By trip or overall so far? I think figuring out a way to comprehensively organize my photos will be the most difficult part!

    • We usually organize our books by trip – we take thousands of photos from each destination lol so we usually only ever have enough space for one country at a time!

      MILK Books and Albums do a really fantastic job, the materials are very classic as you’ve noted, and they’re really high quality made to last.

      Hopefully organizing your photos will be a fun trip down memory lane at the same time :D! Have fun!

  11. You are absolutely right! Photos are the best souvenirs! I wouldn’t go traveling without my camera actually!

    • We wouldn’t leave home without our camera either … photos all the way!

  12. I couldn’t agree more! I love taking photographs as they capture so well my memories and how I feel. I once took my parents on a trip to Rome as a Christmas present and the year after I had the perfect Christmas gift for them (again). I made all our photo memories into a lovely album with all kinds of snippits of info. They loved it!

    • That’s such a wonderful Christmas gift Naomi! We did the same for my parents actually … I convinced my dad I wanted a copy of his photos from Europe so I could use them for the blog and we turned them into an album for them instead 😀 Great minds must think alike!

  13. Wow! I LOVE this. I print my photos and frame them around the house, but this would make a great coffee table addition. I am totally going to enter as many times as I can. I love capturing memories. Enjoy them for the rest of your life, Megan!

    • Absolutely – and every coffee table should have a good travel album on it! Good luck in the giveaway! 🙂

  14. This is a great idea for those special journeys. I haven´t actually printed out photos for ages.

    On a recent trip to Morocco I got some amazing pictures so I think I may look into doing this Thanks for the tip!

    • We hadn’t printed photo for ages either! We’re actually about to do a super large order of 10 or so more albums, though we figure we haven’t paid for printing in years so may as well invest what we would have spent on prints into photo books now!

      Have fun creating your Morocco book!

  15. Love the idea of having an actual photo album of special travels and occasions once again. Thanks for sharing this useful service.

    • Thanks Sue – so glad we could introduce you to the MILK platform 🙂

      There really is just something awesome about photo books which is a completely different experience from viewing your photos electronically or online.

  16. Wow these look great! My family has been on my case for AGES to make one of these with all my travel photos.. They would make a fantastic personalised gift I wish I had read this before Christmas!

    • Thanks Ruth! They really do make great gifts also – we managed to sneak access to all of my mum and dad’s photos from their recent international trips and put it into a beautiful photo book for them for Christmas – they loved it. Great birthday gift idea though since Christmas has now already passed :D!

  17. I do the same thing! I love having a stack of books, each showcasing one trip.

    Definitely easier than printing photos and putting them in the little plastic pages (yup, used to do that!).

    • Yup, we used to do that too! Way back in the day of actual developed photographs so we have stacks of really old albums each photo having been carefully placed in their little plastic sleeve.

      I like this alternative much better :D! Have fun playing around with the platform on MILK Books – it’s really fun organizing your own albums and then being able to hold the final product!

  18. Fantastic! I haven’t made any photo albums of my travels since I got my 1st digital camera for Xmas in 2011 – it was easier to stick the film prints in a book back then, but it didn’t look as good!! My preferred photo viewing method IS actually an album – getting cosy over a laptop or phone just isn’t the same!!

    • Totally agree with you – there’s something about holding a physical photo album in your hands which wins out over the digital versions every time!

  19. I LOVE photo albums. I love looking back through our photos and choosing the best ones. I love designing them and I LOVE getting them in the mail to look through in print to feel them with my fingers too. They definitely are the best souvenir ^^

    • You would love the process of creating a book through the MILK platform then Hallie! Good luck in the comp!

  20. This looks like a great book, a whopping 120 pages would be awesome. We have done a few photo books, but nothing like this.

    • Good luck in the draw! 120 pages could definitely cover a decent number of trips!

  21. It’s true that some of us tend to take way too many photos (guilty) and then rarely look at them but they are the best souvenirs from our trips. This is a great and easy way to create customized photo albums that look great on any mantel!

    • You have no idea lol we take thousands of photos … we try our best to weed through and delete the crappy shots while we’re on a trip so it’s not a chore looking through them later on! 😀

  22. I’ve done a few books in the past and totally agree with what you’ve written. I love looking back over my trips, I take photos of everything to capture the memories. Need some motivation to do some more books for my recent trips so would love to give MILK a go.

    • Best of luck in the giveaway draw! I’ve realized that creating photo books is one of those things that becomes quite addictive! Lol once the first one arrives you want to do more!!

  23. What a beautiful book! Thanks for the super helpful tutorial, too!

    • Glad to help! Have fun! 🙂

  24. We have carried our box of photos around the world for 25 years, at least now you can save them electronically

    • That’s very true Alan 🙂 I’ve dropped my harddrive in the past which lost everything, so now we save them electronically, but also keep them on the SD cards in case we need to recover them. We have quite the collection of SD cards now after 10 years of buying new ones!! 😀

  25. Printing your photos or putting together albums like this is something I preach to my clients. I’m all for digital and social media sharing but there’s just something about having it in your hands that feels permanent and real.

    • There’s definitely something far more special about having something which feels permanent and real 🙂 While I do love the easy and instant nature of social media and how technology has evolved, it’s sad that we’ve lost the physical experience of having photos you can hold. Makes it even more special in the absence of having it though I guess!

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