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6 Best Journaling Apps for iPad & iOS | 2024 Edition

Here are the 6 best journaling apps for iPad and iOS, in case you use an iPhone. With these apps, you can write down your experiences every day.

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Apple iPad 9 Notes

In this guide, I recommend the 5 best journaling apps for iPad.

Regular journaling writing can become a valuable habit in your life, having many positive effects on your life.

Among other things, it allows you to reflect on your thoughts, feelings, and experiences. This way, you can better understand who you are, what you want, and how you react to different situations.

Moreover, writing down thoughts and worries can help reduce stress and strengthen your mental health and mindfulness. It’s a bit like sharing worries and problems with a good friend. It simply feels right and good.

Journaling writing also helps me set clear goals for myself. By recording and manifesting my goals, I develop a clear plan for my future. I then break these goals into smaller chunks to eventually achieve the big end goal. This “tactic” can help, for example, if you need to write a large paper for university or want to achieve challenging athletic goals.

Documenting your successes and progress also boosts your self-confidence by reminding you of how far you’ve already come.

So, it’s best to write your first journaling entry today and create valuable memories and opportunities for reflection for the future.

6 Best Journaling Apps for iPad

Day One

Day One describes itself as “the original among journaling apps”. The app has a modern and minimalist design. It encourages you to keep a journaling daily and to use the app as a tool to regularly reflect on and think about past days.


Photos, location data, or a small reminder that you finally hit 100 kg in bench press during strength training on Wednesday – whatever counts in your life and is worth recording finds a place in Day One.

The app scores with a large range of functions. You can pack pretty much everything into your journaling entries. Handwritten notes, drawings, photos, videos, audio files, website links – you can capture everything in Day One. Also cool is the feature that the app can automatically use your videos and photos from your Instagram account to create new journaling entries in Day One, if you use the premium version.

Pros of Day One

  • Adding photos, drawings, audio, and videos to journaling entries: With Day One, you can enrich your entries with various media to make your memories even more vivid.
  • Theme suggestions: You receive a new theme suggestion every day. So writer’s block belongs to the past. You can find the current theme suggestion by swiping from left to right on the start screen to open the “Today” view.
  • Apple Pencil support: The app supports the Apple Pencil for handwritten entries and drawing (premium version required).
  • Creating multiple journals within the app: Day One allows you to create different journals for different areas of life, so you can organize your thoughts and experiences better.
  • Focus on security: The app offers password protection and supports Face ID and Touch ID as well as end-to-end encryption to protect your entries.
  • Automatic backup and easy data export: Your data is automatically backed up, and you can easily export it at any time.

Cons of Day One

Many paid features: For many cool functions of the app, you need a premium subscription.

Pricing and premium features

You can use Day One smoothly for free.

If you use the premium version, you get additional functions: You can record videos directly in Day One and add up to five-minute clips from your recordings. You can also add audio recordings, giving your journaling literally your voice.

In the premium version, you can also dictate text, as the app supports audio transcription.

Furthermore, your entries are automatically synchronized across all devices, and the app creates cloud backups.

Cool, too, is Day One’s smart import tool, which automatically transfers photos and videos from your Instagram account into Day One.

In the premium version, you can also write and draw handwritten entries with the Apple Pencil.

You can try the premium version for free for one month. After that, it costs 37.99 euros or $40 per year.


Day One offers lots of great possibilities for capturing valuable memories and for reflection.

There are a variety of formatting options, you can add multiple photos, audio files, and videos, the app is intuitive to use and looks chic on top of that. I also think the daily reviews are great. They are super for regularly reminding oneself of precious moments of the past and simply make one happy.

Day One is one of the most holistic digital diaries in the Apple App Store for me and a powerful tool to capture experiences.

Apple App Store: Day One – private journaling


Diaro is a great journaling and note-taking app that allows you to record your activities, daily events, appointments, experiences, thoughts, feelings, secrets, and ideas throughout the day.


The app can be used seamlessly as a classic journaling, travel journal, mood tracker, simple notebook, to-do list tool, and much more, but offers slightly fewer features compared to “Day One”. For example, you cannot greatly format your text according to your wishes. However, the app is really chic and does not overwhelm you with too many fancy features.

Thanks to the powerful search and filter functions, you can also find past journaling entries in no time. You can organize your entries using folders and tags and search your records by keywords.

Also Read: Best Note-taking apps for iPad

Pros of Diaro

  • Organizing journal or journaling entries with folders and tags: Diaro allows you to organize your entries by themes and categories. You can even set different backgrounds for the respective folders.
  • Adding pictures and location details to journaling entries: You can add visual elements to your entries to make your memories even more vivid.
  • Synchronization between the Diaro iOS or Android app and the web version with Dropbox: You can easily synchronize your entries across different devices.

Cons of  Diaro

No text formatting: Text formatting is not available in Diaro, so you cannot use bold, italic, or underlined text to personalize or highlight your notes. However, you can adjust the color of the user interface and the text size, etc., in the app settings.

Pricing and premium features

You can use the app for free. If you want access to premium features like cloud synchronization, the ability to export journaling entries as PDFs, disabled advertising, and more, you need to subscribe to the premium version for 8.99 euros annually.

Apple App Store: Diaro


Reflectly focuses on mindfulness, mental health, and capturing your current emotional state. The app aims to support you in better managing negative thoughts and reinforcing positive attitudes.


The creators of Reflectly also want to help you reduce stress, gain new perspectives, develop gratitude, and strengthen your empathy.

Pros of Reflectly

  • Inspires writing with daily journal prompts: The app offers suggestions for your entries to motivate you to write.
  • Daily questions about your mood and well-being: Reflectly helps you record and understand your emotions and mental state by answering the app’s daily questions.
  • Read and reflect on previous journal entries: You can browse your past entries and reflect on them to gradually understand yourself better.
  • Great free version: Even the free version is fully usable and lets you use the app almost without restriction.

Cons of Reflectly

  • Reflectly is currently only available in the English language. 
  • Not a comprehensive journal app: The app focuses heavily on mindfulness and mental health, so it’s not the best option for you if you want a traditional journal app.

Pricing and Premium Features

Currently, there is a New Year’s offer for the premium version at €22.99 (one-time payment). This gives you lifetime access to the app and completely disables ads. Moreover, you can create unlimited stories in your personal journal, view extended statistics, etc.


Reflectly is a special journal app with a focus primarily on mindfulness and your mental health. I find the daily “mood queries” great. Answering daily how you are feeling and what’s going through your mind significantly contributes to early detection if you might be on the wrong path.

I also find the daily tasks like “Take a bath” or “Do something you’re afraid of” great and they can contribute to gaining mental strength and improving well-being.

I also find the quotes and sayings within the app motivating and inspiring.

Sure, sayings like “Don’t let the world change your smile. Let your smile change the world.” might be a bit cheesy, but I like it.

You can tell the creators put thought into developing Reflectly. It’s commendable that even the free version allows for a lot and that you’re not bombarded with ads in the free version.

Especially if you want to work on your mindfulness, you should give Reflectly a chance.

Apple App Store: Reflectly

Five Minute Journal

The idea of the Five Minute Journal is to use only five minutes for journaling and recording your thoughts for the day. The app facilitates these short entries with targeted tasks, daily reminders, inspiring quotes, and weekly challenges to keep you motivated.

five minute journal

Five Minute Journal uses proven principles of positive psychology to make you happier in just five minutes a day, thanks to the guided gratitude journal format.

Feeling gratitude intentionally can positively affect all areas of life, according to the app developers – from personal growth, increased empathy to meaningful relationships and increased productivity.

I have been dealing with the topic for a while and can confirm the positive effects of practiced, conscious gratitude.

Celebrities like talk show host Oprah Winfrey or author and podcaster Jay Shetty also swear by celebrating gratitude and training their mindfulness.

Scientific studies also show that practicing gratitude improves health, has long-lasting positive effects on the brain, and is a key to mental well-being. It’s nice that Five Minute Journal supports users in regularly taking advantage of this.

Also Read: Best Word Apps for iPad

Pros of Five Minute Journal

  • With targeted questions and tasks, you are supported in journaling regularly: This way, you won’t face writer’s block, and you get a good structure to write and creatively design regular journal entries.
  • Tracking your progress and patterns: The app allows you to track your progress and recurring patterns in your life. This can lead to real insights and enrich your life in the long term.
  • Navigation with timeline or calendar view: You can organize and track your entries effortlessly.
  • Security with passcode, Touch ID, or Face ID: Your entries remain protected.

Cons of Five Minute Journal

  • Only available in English: There is currently no German version of the app, and the texts are accordingly all in English.
  • Free version feels limited: To add pictures or videos to your journal entries, you need a premium subscription.

Pricing and Premium Features

There is a free version, which, however, feels somewhat feature-limited compared to the premium version. The premium variant costs €40.99 annually, €10.49 monthly, or a one-time fee of €99.99 and offers numerous additional features. You have the option to test the premium version for free for three days.

In the premium version, you can add photos and videos to your journal entries.

You can also perform personal exercises and create your custom questions tailored to your mood and goals. Additionally, there is an exclusive notes section, and you can track your mood and see how your emotions affect your days. In the paid version, you can also add a chic Five-Minute-Journal widget to your home screen.


Practicing gratitude consciously with the Five Minute Journal app gradually gives you a more positive outlook on life and the ability to appreciate the little things in life more. The key here is continuity. Thanks to well-thought-out functions and a good structure, the app helps to integrate the practice of gratitude into everyday life.

Although the premium version is not necessarily cheap, it can be worth it if you use the app regularly and want to get the most out of your journaling experience. The additional features in the premium version noticeably enhance the app and make it even more valuable.

Apple App Store: Five Minute Journal

My personal favorite is Reflectly because it combines diary writing with mindfulness and mental health support in an appealing way. However, if you’re looking for a more structured approach to gratitude practice, Five Minute Journal might be the better choice for you.


According to the creators, Stoic is your “guide for mental health.” The app aims to help you understand your feelings and provides valuable advice on how to become happier and more productive, as well as how to better navigate the small and large challenges of life.


Essentially, Stoic helps you to start your day energetic and full of energy in the morning and to reflect on your day in the evening.

The app assists you in writing diary entries with thought-provoking prompts, developing better habits, analyzing your moods, and much more.

You can also add pictures, videos, and voice recordings in Stoic.

Compared to the previously introduced diary apps, Stoic particularly stands out for its chic, minimalist appearance. The focus on mental health is a commonality with the previously introduced app, Reflectly.

Pros of Stoic

  • Preparation for the day and evening reflection: With the personalized daily planner, you start the day full of energy. You can prepare your notes and to-do lists to give structure to your day. In the evening, you reflect on your activities with the habit tracker to continuously develop personally and become a little “better” every day.
  • Exercises for mental health: You can track your mood throughout the day and perform targeted exercises as needed to strengthen your mental health. For example, you can complete exercises that help reduce stress and anxiety, be more mindful, and much more.
  • Guided journals: The tasks encourage reflection and support you in writing regular journal entries. This quickly turns journal writing into a solid habit that boosts your well-being. The app offers topic suggestions on relationships, stress, anxiety, self-awareness, and more. You also have a number of templates you can access.
  • HealthKit integration: You can track trends of your mindful minutes, sleep data, and more.
  • Data privacy and iCloud Sync: With Stoic, you also have the option to protect your diary with a password, TouchID, or FaceID and sync everything across devices with iPad, iPhone, Mac, and even the Apple Watch.
  • Guided meditation: Stoic offers you the possibility to perform guided meditations

Cons of Stoic

  • Clear focus on mental health: If mindfulness and mental health topics don’t interest you, Stoic is not the right journal app for you.
  • Paid exercises: A variety of Stoic’s exercises for strengthening your mental health are paid. This is understandable, as developers need to make money, yet a few more free exercises would be desirable.

Pricing and premium features.

It is commendable that even the free version of Stoic has no ads. With the premium version, you get additional features like even more exercises to improve your mental well-being, etc. The premium version costs 39.99 euros annually. Alternatively, you can subscribe to the app for 7.99 euros per month or purchase it once for 99.99 euros.


If you are interested in topics like mindfulness and mental health and want to develop personally, Stoic could be just the right journal app for you.

I like the sleek minimalist design and that the app helps me reflect regularly and improve my mental well-being. The exercises to strengthen mental health, etc. are great.

Apple App Store: stoic. daily journal

Gainsfire Training Journal

A different kind of journal is “Gainsfire”. Because the focus of this app is not on your everyday life, but on your training progress in the gym.


With a clear emphasis on strength training, Gainsfire offers many cool functions and opportunities to optimally document your fitness journey and track progress.

You can use the Gainsfire training journal to regularly track your training. This also increases your motivation, as you can notice your progress more quickly.

Pros of Gainsfire

  • Training sessions at a glance: You have all your training data in one place and can not only record sets, repetitions, and weights for each training but also track your progress over time. This allows you to specifically work on your weaknesses and further develop your strengths.
  • Comprehensive data recording: With the Gainsfire training journal, you can not only record your training sessions but also add additional information that could be relevant for your progress. You can upload photos of your training sessions to check your form, make notes on training goals, or even track your nutrition and sleep patterns. The sum of all this data helps you keep track of your entire fitness journey.
  • Community feeling: You can share your successes and progress with others, challenge friends, and motivate each other. Connect with like-minded people to benefit from their experience.
  • Data privacy: You can protect your training entries with a password and use Face ID or Touch ID.
  • Completely free: Gainsfire is completely free and based on donations

Cons of Gainsfire

Not a classic diary app: If you’re looking for a conventional diary app and it’s not about tracking your fitness training, Gainsfire is the wrong app for you.

Pricing and availability

Gainsfire training journal is free and based on donations. You can financially support the developer, but this is not mandatory.


I have been using Gainsfire for over half a year to achieve my personal fitness goals. I notice that I am more motivated during training since I can better track my progress. I recommend Gainsfire to all ambitious gym-goers who want to take their training to the next level. Because only if you regularly record your training data, can you make long-term progress.

Apple App Store: Gainsfire Training Journal

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