The very best van life blogs provide a candid look into the who, what, where, how, and, for the love of God, why, of van life in a way that filtered Instagram posts and magazine articles about the vanlife one-percenters cannot.
Instagram’s #vanlife, at times, presents a laughable caricature of vanlife. A parody in which models pose topless on a mountain top, just a blurred glimpse of a classic kombi in the background.
Magazines and online publications are fascinated with the extreme. A woman who has been living in a cardboard box taped to a unicycle for seventeen years. Or perhaps the 20-year-old couple who sold their tech start-up to tour the world in a double-decker wooden bus they carved themselves from a single sequoia. Spare me.
The best blogs tell us how it is for most of us. Practical information, authentic inspiration, and beautiful destinations without the bullshit.
So if you are looking for build advice, lifestyle guides, great van life destinations, or a bit of motivation, we have put together a list of the very best van life blogs in 2021 to help you get your daily dose of wanderlust.
Before we get started allow us to take a minute for a shameless plug… if you are looking for straightforward practical van life advice and inspiration, destination guides, and articles on living and working from the road, please take a moment to sign up for The Vanabond Tales newsletter.
* I have made an effort to reach out to the owners of every blog mentioned below for permission to use their photos. If you own one of the photos below and would prefer me not to use it here, please let me know.
Far Out Ride: Best Van Life Build Blog
FarOutRide is one of the best van life build blogs out there. Isabelle and Antoine take complex systems and break them down into easy to understand visual diagrams. They provide clear instructionals making the lofty ambition of a DIY van conversion achievable even for novice builders. We used their guidance during our own DIY van conversion and found their electrical system guide particularly helpful.
Gnomad Home: Best Van Life Build on a Budget
Vanlifers since 2017, Jayme and John’s blog, Gnomad Home, is a great place to start when pimping your ride. Particularly useful if your home on wheels is not a conventional panel van.
These guys focus on budget-friendly van builds which could come in handy if you are starting out on your first van build.
Gnomads articles are incredibly detailed, taking you through the endless possibilities of van choice, layout, and configuration step by step.
Green Van Go: Best Budget Van Life Blog
Green Van Go is all about hitting the road without going broke.
While van life is supposed to offer some relief from a capitalistic world, sometimes it’s easy to forget that. It can be hard to imagine taking up van life without taking out a loan when you look around the web. College kids driving brand new 4wd Mercedes Sprinters with all the bells and whistles or the couple who don’t seem to do anything but lie on the beach all day who owns a perfectly restored 1962 VW Kombi.
Never fear because Hilary is here to remind you that van life can and should be about more for less. To be clear, she’s not advocating cleaning your teeth with a pine cone or wringing out the washing to save water for tea. Before she took up the van life, Hilary came from a corporate background so she is familiar with running water and Netflix. She is, in her own words, a master at combining comfort and budgeting.
Mowgli Adventures: All Round How-to and Destination Blog
Mowgli Adventures offer a great balance of DIY van build content, how-tos, lifestyle ideas, travel advice, and destination guides from exotic and off-the-beaten-path destinations.
Angela & Graham are the couple behind the blog, traveling full-time in their DIY Sprinter conversion. They go beyond van build guides and product reviews. They also share in-depth travel guides of the beautiful and unique destinations they explore. With posts from Europe, South America, Africa, and even Antarctica, if you are looking for authentic and exotic destination content Mowgli might be for you.
From Mexico to Chile to the Land Down Under, discover more van life destination content here
So We Bought a Van: Best Solo Female Van Life Blog
We love the personal (and hilarious) writing style of Katie who shares advice, stories and practical information on van build, van life, and travel.
So We Bought a Van includes all the useful information you would expect from a van life expert as well as personal reflections and stories from Katie’s life.
“So We Bought a Van” might sound like a strange name for a solo van life blog, but this adventure started with two. When Katie decided to carry on the van life alone, she took the van and blog with her, and So We Bought a Van has gone on to become an important voice for independent solo travel.
On The Free Side: Best New Van Life Blog
A stylistically beautiful website with gorgeous photos, as well as a Youtube channel, thriving Instagram page, and popular Tiktok. On the Freeside is the blog of Indie and Joel a Swedish couple who are primed to take the van life blog scene by storm.
Having only launched in June 2020 the amount of work and love they have put into their site and channels are truly impressive. With plenty of headings waiting to be filled in, they promise to deliver travel guides, van builds, and van life content as well as van life recipes and cooking inspiration. If they can deliver on that, they are sure to be huge.
Goats on the Road: Best Van Life Work Blog
Before you jump down my throat, I realize that Goats on the Road is not a van life blog. They are however the authority when it comes to making money while traveling. They have an absolute wealth of information when it comes to remote jobs and jobs you can do on the road.
If you are just starting to think about ways you can make money on the road to sustain van life and travel have a look at this article on the 10 Best Van Life Jobs.
The Bear Foot Theory: Best Van Life Guide Blog
The Bear Foot Theory is an outdoor adventure blog, which includes a van life section.
The Bear Foot Theory brings you a complete van life course. They cover everything from choosing a vehicle, preparing for van life, life on the road, to working from a van. Their comprehensive how-to van life content is perfect for anyone starting their van life journey and looking for practical and complete information on how to live in a van.
The all-female crew behind Bear Foot Theory includes founder Kristin, Director of Operations Linda, Assistant and collaborator Becky, and Content Coordinator, Courtney.
Let’s Play Ride and Seek: Best Couple Van Life Blog
Nat and Abi are the creative couple behind Let’s Play Ride and Seek. Nat is a chef and poet who contributes the words to their blog, her wife Abi is a professional photographer who documents their adventures on film. Hailing from South Carolina, Nat and Abi have been living on the road with their dogs Bear & Peluche for more than two and a half years.
Their blog has heaps of van life content, videos, poetry, and absolutely mouthwatering vegan recipes. They also take incredible photos that will leave you yearning for a romantic escapade on the road.
Off the Grid with a Kid: Best Van Life Family Blog
Van life with children is challenging. Van life with kids means homeschooling, getting kids fed, bathed, and keeping them happy and healthy on the road. Working while traveling or running a van life blog with a kid is even more challenging.
Often families who try their hand at van life do so for just a few months or a year before settling back down somewhere so the kids can get back to school and parents can go back to work. Not so for Bionca and her eleven-year-old son Carter who has been on the road for four years.
Besides an awesome blog name and Instagram handle, Off the Grid with a Kid is a great van life blog packed with authentic and inspiring content.
In addition to her blog, popular Instagram, and Youtube channel, Bionca is a life coach, public speaker, and aspiring author. While managing her many careers FROM THE ROAD this single mom and her son give back to the community through a variety of humanitarian projects. Excuse me, I feel a bit exhausted I need to lie down.
If you are looking for some serious motivation for van life with children, or if you have ever put off van life because *yoU doN’t HAve ThE tiME*, Bianca will inspire you, or at the very least shame you, into action.
Divine on the Road: Best Van Life Blog with a Dog
Divine on the Road has all the great practical information you’d expect from one of the best van life blogs on the internet. Here you’ll find build advice, lifestyle tips, and travel guides. But Sydney’s journey has been defined by one important feature, her dogs Ella and Pearl.
This blog has both dedicated articles on how to deal with pets on the road as well as build and lifestyle content from someone who actually travels full time with their dogs. Divine on the Road is perfect if you have been dreaming about taking Fido for an extended road trip.
Van Cat Meow: Best Van Life Blog with a Cat
Van Cat Meow has followed the adventures of Rich and his cat Willow since they quit the corporate world in 2014 to follow their dreams. In 2016, two became three when Steph (a human) jumped aboard.
Van Cat Meow focuses on stories and experiences as well as van build and van life posts, all with a feline angle of course.
Always the Adventure: Most Authentic Van Life Blog
We love the writing style and honest approach to blogging of Amber and Chris, creators of Always the Adventure.
Covering topics including climbing, sustainable travel, van builds, and remote work they provide practical and helpful information and inspiration written in a straightforward, accessible, and entertaining way.
Silent Travel: Best Black Identity Van Life Blog
Silent Travel is comprised of the letters of Sonia, an Italian blogger and content creator. She blogs about slow travel, which we love. Her writing is authentic and real, which we also love. Sonia also takes beautiful photos to complement her writing.
Through her blog, Sonia shares her thoughts and opinions on identity, community, and race. She doesn’t pull any punches either as she offers a perspective that has been missing from the mainstream van life conversation. Sonia also uses her blog to raise awareness of the deaf community.
If you have been looking for a van life blog with a strong message and a focus on community and inclusion, this could be what you’ve been searching for.
From Rust to Road Trip: Best Van Life Video Blog
Lucy and Ben of From Rust to Road Trips have a beautiful blue van, a penchant for exploring the less touristed parts of the world, an eye for photography, and great voices for narration. So naturally, they make fantastic videos about their incredible van life.
They document their adventures beautifully and honestly providing insight and inspiration from off-the-beaten-path destinations. From Rust to Road Trips goes beyond the veneer of other van life video channels to explore stories about the history and the people of the places they visit, as well as documenting their own journey. They also take absolutely beautiful photos which you can check out on their popular Instagram account.
I hope you found these blogs as informative, authentic, and inspirational as we have! If you have a question or would like to tell us about your favorite van life blog, please let us know in the comments below!
Looking for more on van life lifestyle?
- Living in a Van and Working Full Time: 5 Essential Tips for Remote Working from a Van
- 51 Simple Van Life Hacks and Tips You Need to Know Before You Hit the Road
- 8 Simple Van Life Tips for Living on the Road in a Van
- Van Life Food Ideas: 7 Disgustingly Simple Van Life Recipes
- 25 Van Life Kitchen Essentials for the Ultimate Van Chef
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