Residences for bloggers and content creators are a relatively new concept in the tourism world, and they’re a testament to the tourism boards and brands who recognise the value of working with content creators to reach audiences they wouldn’t otherwise.
They each provide incredibly diverse and immersive experiences in their host cities and they foster a scenario where the creator can produce top quality content with the support and expertise of someone who knows the city and surrounding areas well. As far as I can tell, this idea seems to be particularly growing in Europe, so here are five of our favourite blogger houses for content creators.
If you know of any others in Europe or beyond, we’d love to hear about them in the comments!
Five Awesome Blogger Houses in Europe
Estonia, Tallinn – Storyteller’s Nest
For a start, what a romantic name! It sounds like the kind of place you’d struggle to leave – luckily they give you lots of incentives to get out and explore. Storyteller’s Nest in Tallinn offers a three or five-night stay in the heart of gorgeous Tallinn. We fell in love with the city ourselves recently so would highly recommend a visit to Tallinn, blogger house or not! They also provide a car with fuel, restaurant vouchers, and personalised tips so it’s a wonderful opportunity to see more of the country. They trust you to know where and how you produce your best content and let you get on with it.
Lithuania, Vilnius – Tinggly Blogger House
We had such a great experience with Tinggly and very much identify with their brand’s philosophy of ‘give experiences not stuff‘ so we were off to a good start the minute we met the team and arrived at this beautiful house. Vilnius is another of our favourite cities and a huge part of that was thanks to Tinggly, who provided local tips and some exciting tailored experiences. They even picked us up and drove us to one of the nearby towns: the medieval captial of Trakai. The house is beautiful and set up with everything a blogger could need, from studio lighting, big open space to work, and a massive projector (ok, maybe not conducive to blogging but certainly conducive to watching the newest season of Stranger Things in style).
Find out more about the Tinggly Blogger House.
Finland, Helsinki – My Helsinki Residence
Helsinki is a beautiful city with so much get up to in the city and nearby. The Helsinki tourism board was one of the first to get involved with the blogger residence and offer an amazing package for lucky content creators. They offer a 4-7 day residency in modern, beautifully-designed accommodation, local tips, and a survival guide which includes transports passes etc. And even flights to and from Helsinki! You’re all set to explore Helsinki’s diverse city and nearby natural delights with all the support you could need to create great content.
Find out more about what My Helsinki Residence offer.
The Netherlands, The Hague – Blogger House
We’ve had a great experience with the tourism board in The Hague; they’re seriously the friendliest bunch of people. Taking part in their blogger house experience means staying in one of their amazing sea chalets and enjoying one of the best-kept secrets of The Hague: the city’s gorgeous 11km of beach. They invite a sizeable group of bloggers every year (since 2016), provide housing, transport, and activities to get up to. Since they invite a mix of bloggers, vloggers, and photographers it’s a great opportunity to meet like-minded people and potentially create more than you ever could alone.
Find out more about The Hague Blogger House.
Italy, Emilia Romagna – Blogville
This blogger house experience is created by Emilia Romagna Region Tourist Board together with the influencer network iAmbassador. Once a year they host a group of bloggers and show the best of the Northern Italian region, including the local small towns, art and architecture, and local food. They’re currently closed for 2019 but you’ll be able to see the content each of the creators contributes on their site.
Find more information about Blogville here.
What do you need?
Each one of these blogger residences has its own method of application but they all have some things in common. Much like working with tourism boards and brands in general, you’ll need:
- your website and social media channels
- facts & figures about visitors/reach; interaction and conversion of your channels
- Why you want to stay and are particularly interested in that city
- why they should choose you above other applicants
- What you’re planning on creating while you’re staying there
What if I can’t fina a blogger house in the city I’m interested in?
Since spaces are limited in these residences and it’s still very much a new concept in general, there are other ways to enjoy free accommodation in a city and still be in a great position to write about you’re getting up to. Here are some of our favourites.
Our method of choice since we love animals so much and like a comfortable environment to work in. Housesitting is very popular now and is the perfect way to spend a few days or a week (or even longer) in cities that would perhaps be too expensive to stay in other ways. It’s particularly ideal if you want to travel Western Europe, USA, Australia, and New Zeland. Although, you do find good ones in East Asia and the Middle East during the school holidays when teachers take a trip.
This is definitely something we’ve considered but haven’t tried it ourselves yet. We’ve got plenty of friends who have and it’s an ideal set-up if you don’t mind helping out as you travel. Typical workaways involve helping out at a hostel for free-board but there’s some farm work, housesitting, NGO work, and it’s also an ideal way to build up some skills in areas you want to as places often need helps with marketing, web design, and photography in exchange for free accommodation. This is ideal if you want to get off the beaten track, meet locals, and pretty much have your choice of the world to stay in.
Find out more about Workaway here.
Couchsurfing is a brilliant way to meet new people and it’s particularly useful if you just need a night or two of accommodation, don’t mind sharing someone’s else’s space, and would love a local person to help point you in the best directions. The community gives as much as it takes and most hosts will prefer if you’ve hosted before and have some reviews. It’s not impossible without reviews though, just make sure you put a bit of effort into your application.
Find out more about Couchsurfing here.
Not really a short-term solution (although you can find particularly lucrative summer contracts in some countries) teaching is an amazing way to have a base for a while, earn a good salary, and actually dig into the culture. We don’t miss teaching as such but we definitely miss the interactions we used to have with young and adult students in terms of what they’d teach us about their country.
If you work online and are looking or some great writing opportunities, check out our ‘guide to online writing jobs‘.