How to take insane travel photos: As told by a Pro

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Grab a camera and go

For any global nomad, creating unforgettable experiences are the most important part of any trip. Freezing these special moments in time, then replaying and sharing them with those important to you is an incredible ability.

Read on for ten ways to take your photography game to the next level and ensure you can capture insane travel photos.


1. Get lost.


Probably one of the most important tips to taking amazing photos: don’t be afraid to go out and explore. The best photos (and the most memorable) are often taken outside of viewing platforms and beyond the tourist hotspots.

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2. Rise and shine.


Sunrises make for incredible photos. Not only is the light softer and more pleasing, it avoids the harsh contrast created by mid-day sun. Also, less people around to spoil your images.

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Isla Del Sol, Peru.

If you’re not feeling that early morning rise, go for the sunset option – just prepare for more people.

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Isla Ometepe, Nicaragua.

Before you go and before the sun has disappeared, be sure to stick around as sometimes the most dramatic skies occur once the sun has dropped below the horizon.

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Isla Ometepe, Nicaragua.

3. Pack light.


Less is more. Pack smarter, and minimise the time spent fiddling through a camera bag – as you might just miss the shot.

DSLR’s, although great, are almost always overkill. Small mirrorless cameras can produce incredibly detailed shots and smartphones with lens adaptors also take stunning images. Plus, the added benefit being able to blend into a crowd of locals with less gear, and not scream ‘expensive-camera-gear-in-my-bag!’.

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Otway National Park, Australia.

4. Snap a friend.

People give perspective and create a sense of wanderlust. By featuring a character in your image, you’ll instantly add that extra dimension to a frame. If you don’t have any travel companions with you, place your camera on a tripod and use a remote trigger or a ten-second self-timer, then jump in the shot!

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Salar de Uyuni, Bolivia.

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Country Victoria, Australia.

5. Capture the moment.

Shooting a portrait or landscape is great – but it’s important to capture those moments between the shot that convey the story. Think: the journey shots getting to or from locations or capturing the emotion of people around you, as the best photos aren’t necessarily the ones you’ve planned for.

Arguably one of the nicest stretches of road in Australia- even better by skateboard ?

A post shared by Max Kruse (@maxwkruse) on

6. Get dirty.


Unique perspectives are found where people tend to avoid. Taking photos in extreme conditions, like a storm can produce incredible content that sets you apart from the rest, but before you go –make sure to take adequate steps and invest in the right equipment to protect your camera and lenses.

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Huayana Potosi, Bolivia.

7. Be respectful.


If you’re friendly with locals, 99% of the time you’ll be welcomed with open arms however in saying that, always ask first before taking a photo, and be sure to share the image afterwards where possible.

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Kuna Islands, Panama

8. Think: perspective.


Eye level shots are boring. We’ve seen them a million times over. Get down super low or shoot from high up and unlock a new perspective.

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Mallorca, Spain.

9. Back it up.


Although not exactly a how-to tip, this is by far the most important bit of information for any photographer travelling abroad.

We’ve all heard countless horror stories from photographers who have had their laptop and gear stolen – all of which are recoverable from insurance – except for your priceless memories!

The best advice you will ever stumble across: always take two portable hard drives. Keep one on you and if you’re travelling with a friend offload the other to stay safe with your travel companion.

If you’re travelling solo, send a few USB sticks home along the way to save the potential heartache from losing all of your photos. Alternatively, if your photos are small JPEGS, invest in a Dropbox Pro account and upload them regularly.

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The Great Ocean Road, Australia.

10. Get social.


Facebook and Instagram are your friends. Create and inspire others to see the world around us while sharing your story. Engaging with a network of like-minded travellers will not only provide daily inspiration but allow you to connect with others from around the world who can share local knowledge and tips.

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Kathmandu, Nepal.

Share your snaps from the road on InstagramTwitter and Facebook using the #topdecker hashtag.

Are you ready to get social with us? Follow us @TopdeckTravel.

Max Kruse

Max KruseMax Kruse is a commercial and lifestyle photographer based in Melbourne, Australia. He has travelled extensively, with over 30 countries under his belt. You can visit his work at www.maxkrusecreative.com or Instagram @maxwkruse.