Photography based travel can be great fun and will allow you to come home from your trip with heaps of images that you could then share on social media, print, or even sell. But if you’re travelling abroad with the primary goal of capturing tons of beautiful images, then you should be planning ahead. Wanting to plan an incredible trip? Here are tips for planning an epic photo trip abroad.
Research photo spots online
For many destinations around the world, you’ll find photography articles online suggesting the best spots to take photographs. These can be a great resource to learn about key spots you definitely don’t want to miss during your travels. You may also be able to look around on photography sites, Flickr or Google images for ideas and inspiration on what to take photographs of.
Scout out locations
As well as visiting recommended photo spots also try and find new and unique ones yourself. Such as using Google Maps to find locations that might be good for photography, or provide good perspectives of a city or destination. Even while you are at the destination and exploring you should make a mental note of places you may want to revisit during different conditions, such as when the sun is in a certain position, or for sunrise or sunset.
Get inspiration from Instagram
Instagram can be a great source of inspiration and if you follow local photographers, you may find they tag the location of key spots for photos. You could also consider reaching out to photographers on social media and they may give you some tips, or even offer to meet up and show you around.
Consider going on a tour
A dedicated photo tour can be a great way to see a destination abroad. You’ll often have an itinerary planned to allow you to see all the best photography locations, as well as receive tips and advice on how to capture the best photographs.
Think in advance about your kit
Before you go travelling with the aim of capturing beautiful photographs make sure you have the right photography equipment. Such as you have the right lenses, a tripod, potentially a drone, spare batteries and other vital equipment.
You should also ensure you know how to use your equipment, so before you travel abroad read articles on travel photography to learn as much as you can in advance.
Travel with other photographers
If you travel with other photographers you can often work together to plan your trip and also help each other during your actual shoot. This is especially true if you want photographs with yourself in it, such as to give a sense of scale and perspective. Travelling with other photographers is also a bit safer such as if you intend to venture to more isolated areas.
Look at safety precautions and laws
Whenever you travel anywhere you should stay safe. This is especially important when travelling with expensive photography equipment. To ensure no mishaps happen always research the safety of your destination. This might be by searching on Google simply by asking your question “is [destination] safe for photography?”.
As well as the general safety also research if there are any laws or regulations for taking photographs, as the last thing you’ll want is your equipment confiscated.
Sunset sunrise times
Sunrise and sunset are prime times for photography, and you should check before you travel when these are. A good site to use is timeanddate.com or considering downloading an app such as PhotoPills mentioned below.
When planning to take photographs during sunrise or sunset (also known as the golden hour) then make sure you give yourself plenty of time to get to the location and find a good perspective and get set up.
Time of year and seasons
The time of year and season can also affect the photography opportunities you get during your trip abroad. Such as if you visit in the winter you may have snow, in the autumn you can get fantastic colours, and during the spring and summer you’d get wonderful greens and possibly flowers. This means you should think about the season and what nature will be giving you when planning your photography trip.
A great app to help photographers is PhotoPills. This provides information on sunset/sunrise times, the position of the sun throughout the day, the Milky Way location, and tons of other really useful information.
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