35 Of The Most Stunning Travel Photos We’ve Seen So Far This Year

We never really need any motivation to head out on a photo adventure and travel around the world, but the finalists for the Siena International Photo Awards (SIPA) sure did give us tons of inspiration! The competition is one of the world’s largest photo competitions. In fact, this year’s event attracted over 50,000 entries from photographers spanning 130 countries.

The annual photography competition is open to professional and non-professional photographers alike. There were a variety of categories such as wildlife, nature, monochrome, architecture, open, sports, people, and, of course, travel photography.

Remarkable Award in Travel Category | Photo by Javier de la Torre
Remarkable Award in Travel Category | Photo by Javier de la Torre

Travel Around The World In Photos

The entries from this year are some of our favorites yet. And with that in mind, it just wouldn’t be right of us not to share. We think you’ll find them really inspiring. Browse through the incredible photos from photographers all around the world. If you’re like us, you’ll be reaching for your camera and passport–so be prepared for the sudden urge to travel.

Enjoy the photos and remember to click through to the photographer’s social media and show them some appreciation with a follow and some likes! For those interested, you can learn more about the competition on their website, www.sipacontest.com. They have even more incredible photos over there so be sure to check it out!

1. Phan Rang Fishing Net Making

Photographer: Danny Yen Sin Wong (MY)
Location: Vietnam
About The Photo: In a small village in southern Vietnam near Phan Rang, a woman wearing a typical cone hat is creating a fishing net in their traditional manner. The manufacturing of handmade nets is still a typical Vietnamese activity for women which they carry on while their husbands are out fishing. Shot with a Nikon D3X and 20-35mm f2.8 lens. 1/100 sec at f5 ISO 400.

1st Place Open Color Photography | Photo by Danny Yen Sin Wong

2. Rein

Photographer: Liduen Chen
Location: Uknown

travel photos in south east asia of cows
Remarkable Award in Open Color Photography | Photo by Liduan Chen

3. Fun In Childhood

Photographer: Chuntao Zhou
Location: Uknown

kids splashing in water china travel photos
Remarkable Award in Open Color Photography | Photo by Chuntao Zhou

4. Racing Camels

Photographer: AbdulAziz Albagshi (SA)
Location: Unknown

Remarkable Reward in Open Monochrome | Photo by AbdulAziz Albagshi

5. White Rose

You can use this photo as inspiration to our weekly theme. This week our challenge is to shoot the color red!

Photographer: Isa Ebrahim (BH)
Location: Uknown

Honorable Mention in Open Color Photography | Photo by Isa Ebriham

6. Sprinkle Net

Photographer: Fuyang Zhou (CN)
Location: Unknown

Remarkable Award in Open Color Photography | Photo by Fuyang Zhou

7. Going Home On The Sand Dunes

Photographer: Danny Yen Sin Wong (MY)
Location: Unkown

Remarkable Award in Open Monochrome | Photo by Danny Yen Sin Wong

8. Tuscan Golden Sunrise 15

Photographer: Michele Macinai (IT)
Location: Tuscany

Remarkable Award in Open Color Photography | Photo by Michele Macinai

9. Il Gondoliere

Photographer: Giuseppe Antonio Valletta (IT)
Location: Venezia
About The Photo: This photo is taken on Malvasia Vecchia Bridge, in Venice, in one of the most photographed places in the world, where you can still find unique moments at a glance. The author has photographed this gondolier, towards the end of a hard day’s work, while he was returning home with his dog. Shot with a Canon EOS 6D and EF 17-40mm lens. 1/60th sec at f16, ISO 100.

3rd Place in Open Monochrome | Photo by Giuseppe Antonio Valletta

10. Motion

Photographer: Faith Balkan
Location: Unknown

Honorable Mention in Open Color Photography | Photo By Fatih Balkan

11. Net Mending

Photographer: Hoang Long Ly (VN)
Location: Bac Lieu – Vietnam
About The Photo: Some Vietnamese women are engaged in carrying out their daily work of mending fishing nets in a fishing village near Bac Lieu, a coastal district located in southern Vietnam, in the Mekong Delta region. Shot with Nikon D700 and 24-85mm f2.8 lens. 1/160th sec at f7.1, ISO 640.

Honorable Mention in Travel | Photo by Hoang Long Ly

12. The Make Up

Photographer: Sanghamitra Sarkar (IN)
Location: India
About The Photo: This little boy was being painted like Lord Krishna as preparation for acting in a village drama, while little Radha was looking on with intense curiosity. Shot with Nkon D610 and 28-300mm f3.5-5.6 lens. 1/1000 sec at f4.5, ISO 400.

Honorable Mention in Travel | Photo by: Sanghamitra Sarkar

13. Echelon

Photographer: Buket Ozatay (CY)
Location: Unknown

Remarkable Award in Open Monochrome | Photo by Buket Ozatay

14. Ink Rhyme Of Sea

Photographer: Zhiwei Chen (CN)
Location: Xiapu, Zhejiang Province, China
About The Photo: Early in the morning, a fisherman is crossing with purse seines. The high key technique used on the bamboo emphasizes the prosperity of fishing, in order to show the life of a fishermen as a good one, better than reality. Shot with a Canon EOS-1D X and EF 70-200mm f2.8 lens. 1/50th sec at f11, ISO 200.

Honorable Mention in Travel | Photo by Zhiwei Chen

15. Outlines And Shadows

Photographer: Danny Yen Sin Wong (MY)
Location: Vietnam
About The Photo: On the sand dunes of Mui Ne, situated close to its homonym city in South Vietnam, three girls are walking along the slope wearing their typical cone hats and carrying their scales, creating beautiful lines and shade effects on the sand. Shot with a Nikon D3X and 18-35mm lens. 1/400 sec at f8, ISO 200.

Honorable Mention in Open Color Photography | Photo by Danny Yen Sin Wong

16. The Bedouin Boy

Photographer: Habib Alzadjali (OM)
Location: Oman
About The Photo: A Bedouin boy with his family and their camel. The adults are wearing the traditional Omani Khanjar, a dagger still used in official ceremonies, as well as a symbol of the country. Shot with Canon EOS 6d and 50mm f1.8 lens. 1/1000th sec at f5, ISO 200.

travel photography in the desert
Honorable Mention in Travel | Photo by Habib Alzadjali

17. Song In Teahouse

Photographer: Hong Ding (CN)
Location: Jinlu village, Yinjiang Town, Yingjiang District of Ningbo City, China
About The Photo: A tea plantation in Jinlu village , Yinjiang Town, Yingjiang District of Ningbo City, which is famous for its tea production in the Zhejiang Province. Among thousands of acres of high-quality, ecological tea plantations, between large waves of luxuriant green, the presence of working girls gives the scene liveliness. Shot with Canon EOS 5D Mark III and EF 70-200 mm lens. 1/250th sec at f9, ISO 200.

Honorable Mention in Travel | Photo by Hong Ding

18. Strawberry Greenhouses

Photographer: Leyla Emektar (TR)
Location: Nazilli – Aydin – Turkey
About The Photo: To take this shot, I had to climb a relief which allowed me to include interesting, colored greenhouses located near Nazilli. To make the picture more interesting, I waited for the moment when a Turkish peasant who was working with the strawberries entered the frame. Shot with a Canon EOS 7D and 24-70mm f4 lens. 1/250th sec at f13, ISO 100.

travel photo of strawberry greenhouses
1st Place in Travel | Photo by Leyla Emektar

19. Boys Trainers

Photographer: Matjaz Krivic (SI)
Location: Diafarabe Mali
About The Photo: When we met, the boy was carrying his shoes in his hands as he couldn’t use them anymore. Traveling prepared makes a difference and with my sewing needle and dental floss, we patched them up, so that he could follow his herd. Shot with Nikon FM2 and 20mm f2.8 lens. 1/125 sec at f4.5, ISO 100.

2nd Place in Travel | Photo by Matjaz Krivic

21. Floating Market

Photographer: Antonius Andre Tjiu (ID)
Location: South Borneo
About The Photo: A floating market is a market where goods are displayed and sold from boats. Floating markets are developed in places where water transportation plays an important role in everyday life. Shot with Canon EOS 40D and EF 18-35mm lens. 1/60th sec at f8, ISO 200.

3rd Place in Travel | Photo by Matjaz Krivic

22. Jodhpur Family

Photographer: Isa Ebrahim (BH)
Location: India
About The Photo: Colors, facial expressions, people’s posture and a studied composition make this image particularly interesting as it portrays the Bhenwa family in the city of Jodhpur, Rajasthan, and is a true representation of the living conditions in this Indian city. Shot with Canon EOS 1D X and 24-70mm lens. 1/400ths sec at f7.1, ISO 400.

Honorable Mention in Travel | Photo by Isa Ebrahim

23. Playing In The Sky

Photographer: James Rushforth (GB) | Facebook
Location: Monte Piana
About The Photo: This is Monte Piana (2324m) in the Italian Dolomites, above the small town of Misurina during the International Highline festival. The mountain is popular with walkers, and in particular slack liners, who come to take advantage of the mountains’ numerous buttresses, suspending thin lines between the spectacular cliffs and then attempting to walk over the gaps. Shot with Nikon D810 and 16-35mm f4 lens. 1/320 sec at f9, ISO 100.

Honorable Mention in Travel | Photo by James Rushforth

24. Relationship

Photographer: Alla Sokolova (FR)
Location: Singapore Zoo
About The Photo: The polar bear spends most of its time on land. When it gets too hot, it slowly slides into the pool and swims as if it were floating in weightlessness. Everything changes at feeding time, when the polar bear becomes very active and can be very interesting to watch. Shot wtih Canon EOS 5D Mark III and EF 70-200mm f2.8 lens. 1/500th sec at f2.8, ISO 125.

Honorable Mention in Travel | Photo by: Alla Sokolova

25. Storytelling

Photographer: Aimin Wang (CN)
Location: Fujian, China
About The Photo: Some people relaxing while reclining on chairs listening to a story in a Tea House, the traditional place for Chinese socialization. In Sichuan Province, China, the Tea House still has a vital role in the daily lives of the people: people enjoy the typical slow pace of their lifestyle. Shot with Canon EOS 5D Mark II and 24-105 f4 lens. 1/1250th sec at f4, ISO 400.

Honorable Mention in Travel | Photo by Aimin Wang

26. Fight On Horses

Photographer: Yun Zhao (CN)
Location: Unknown

Remarkable Award in Open Color Photography | Photo by Yun Zhao

27. Harvest Season

Photographer: Hanbin Wang (CN)
Location: Bayinggolin Mongol Autonomous Prefecture, Jing County and Bohu County of Xinjiang, China.
About The Photo: October, the chilly harvest season, when the red chillies are mature, farmers pick them and leave them to dry in the hot sun. Once dry the chillies can easily be stored, transported and sold. This picture was taken from a unique aerial perspective, when the farmers were busy with the harvest. Shot with a Canon EOS 5D and 24-105 f4 lens. 1/500 sec at f4, ISO 160.

travel photography in china
Honorable Mention in Open Color Photography | Photo by Hanbin Wang

28.Central Black

Photographer: Isa Ebrahim (BH)
Location: Bahrain
About The Photo: A Bahraini Muslim woman carrying her son while taking part in the funeral of Isa Radhi, the Bahraini protester who was allegedly killed during Martial Law in Sitra Village, South Manama on March 22, 2011. Shot with a Nikon D300S and 70-200mm f2.8 lens. 1/250 sec at f6.3 ISO 400.

3rd Place in Open Color Photography | Photo by Isa Ebrahim

29. Desert Kid

Photographer: Fadhel Almutaghawi (BH)
Location: Unknown

Remarkable Award in Open Monochrome | Photo by Fadhel Almutaghawi

30. Scaffolding Cafe

Photographer: Leyla Emektar (TR)
Location: Tea Coffe House Turkey
About The Photo: While going to the beach to take photos, the shadow of some people in a cafe in Basiskele, Kocaeli, caught my attention. As a result, I decided to wait for the sunset in order to emphasize the shadow effect. After a few shots, someone suddenly looked out a window providing another interesting frame. Shot with Canon EOS 7D at 1/125 sec on f7.1, ISO 100.

Honorable Mention in Open Color Photography | Photo by Leyla Emektar (TR)

31. Red Zone

Photographer: Herman Morrison (ID)
Location: China
About The Photo: This photo was taken in Lijiang – China, during Impression Lijiang, a magnificent outdoor singing and dancing performance demonstrating the traditions and lifestyle of the local ethnic group. Shot with a Nikokn D800E at 1/200th sec at f7.1 on ISO 200.

Honorable Mention in Open Color Photography | Photo by Herman Morrison

32. Childhood

Photographer: Probal Rashid (BD)
Location: Gazipur, Dhaka, Bangladesh
About The Photo: Slum children play football in a muddy field in the Gazipur district in Dhaka. Although Bangladesh’s football team is positioned 162 in the FIFA rankings, the country has millions of football fans, most of them supporting their national team. Shot with Canon EOS 5D Mark II and EF24-70mm lens. 1/640th sec at f4, ISO 400.

Honorable Mention in People & Portraits | Photo by Probal Rashid

33. Smile

Photographer: Jianjun Huang (CN)
Location: Labrang Lamasery, Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture of Gannan, Gansu Province, China
About The Photo: During a Dharma assembly in the monastery of Labrang Lamasery, due to the heavy snow, all the monks’ robes were covered with a thick layer of snow. When a young Lama was looking back with a smile, the photographer captured his smiling face. Shot with Canon 5D Mark III and EF 70-200mm lens. 1/4000th sec at f2.8, ISO 1000.

Honorable Mention in People & Portraits | Photo by Jianjun Huang

34. Kashmir

Photographer: Mahmoud Yakut (KW) | Facebook
Location: Kashmir
About The Photo: This is a nomadic mountain inhabitant of the Sonamarg region in Kashmir whose harsh facial features and sharp look made him blend in with the rugged mountaintops in the background. In the end, it looked like he was part of his own landscape. Shot with Nikon D600 and 28mm f2.8 lens. 1/80th sec at f16, ISO 1000.

Travel around the world with photography.
Honorable Mention in People & Portraits | Photo by Mahmoud Yakut

35. Sardine Run

And now for the grand finale! The image below was awarded with SIPAContest Photo of the Year.

Photographer: Greg Lecoeur (FR) | Facebook
Location: South Africa
About The Photo: During the sardines’ migration along the coast of South Africa, all marine predators are looking for sardines! I was lucky to be at the right place at the right time to photograph their capture. Shot with a Nikon D7000 and Tokina 1-17mm fisheye. 1/2000 sec, f9, ISO 200.

Travel Photography: Sardine run in South Africa.
Photo Of The Year | Photo by Greg Lecoeur (FR)

50,000 Shades Of Wow

As if the still images weren’t enough, the awesome team who hosts the SIPA, Art Photo Travel, went along with some of the photographers from the competition. In the clip below you can check out some behind the scenes footage and peek at some of the stunning beauty these world travelers get to witness.

Well, what are you waiting for? Go check the balance on your frequent flyer miles and start planning your next photo adventure. Remember to keep us updated and share your stories on your PhotoBlog as you travel around the world! Who knows, maybe next year one of your photos will be a SIPA Finalist!

If you need a little help in the shooting department, we’ve got you covered! Read this checklist for travel photographers: 25 Tips and Tricks Every Travel Photography Needs To Know

[ h/t: Siena International Photo Award | Facebook | Twitter ]


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About the author

Tiffany Mueller

Tiffany Mueller is an adventurer and photographer based in Hawaii. When she's not climbing volcanoes or swimming with sharks, you can find her here on PhotoBlog serving as the fearless leader to the wonderful editorial staff.

  • I really love the composition in #22. Jodhpur Family. The colors too!

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