Best destinations for travel photography

Posted by Hayley Cleeter 17th April 2024
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Best destinations for travel photography

Narrowing down the best destinations for travel photography is a challenge to say the least, because fortunately for us, every corner of this beautiful world contains stories untold and a multitude of different ways to tell it. Through the medium of photography, we can capture a moment that would otherwise be lost in time, held tight only in our memories. 

Lending your unique perspective to the world of photography is a huge responsibility, whether you’re a pro or an amateur with a passion, so please remember that no matter where you travel, always be respectful of the people and their culture, and the environment. Ask permission, share your images and see it as an opportunity to not just take, but to connect. Stick to the designated paths and be careful that your flash doesn’t disturb wildlife.

With our wealth of travel experience across the globe, here are the destinations that will look picture-perfect immortalised on the pages of a Bob Books photography book…


India is a vast country of such extremely different landscapes, people, events and architectural and natural wonders, that you could spend a lifetime photographing this magical place and still find unique stories to document. From snow-capped peaks to tea plantations, or salt pans to dense forests, even landscapes as grand as this pale in comparison to the people you’ll find dwelling amongst them. 

The people of India are usually happy to pose for the camera (but please still ask permission) and you’ll likely receive just as many requests for photos yourself. Festivals are a good place to see the colour and vibrancy of India come to life, but also spend time in local markets, or focus on the fun forms of transport you’ll experience, from toy trains to rickshaws. We’d bet that even the most amateur photographer would leave India feeling like a pro - it’s just that photogenic.


As beautiful and intriguing as Mongolia is, at first, it might not seem like there’s a whole lot to photograph. But along the journey through these expansive lands, you’ll become accustomed to the vastness that at times seems lacking, and realise that it just takes a readjustment to see all that this country has to offer. The landscapes can vary massively - grasslands dotted with gers, Gobi dunes framed by distant mountains, pine forests, craggy canyons and otherworldly flaming cliffs. 

But visit during the spectacular Golden Eagle Hunters Festival and you won’t know where to point your lens first. Snap traditional nomadic games, where graceful eagles soar from the mountains and their hunting partners thunder along on horseback. Mongolia is an explosion of a cultural spectacle and offers a real contrast of images from the peaceful landscapes and nomadic Mongolian families etching out their way of life on the serene steppe.


Uzbekistan’s architectural legacy is synonymous with the ancient Silk Road and influenced by so many different civilisations, migrations and conquerors that photographing this melting pot of history allows for the opportunity to contemplate the splendours long after you return. Wandering the cities of Samarkand, Bukhara and Khiva will provide ample opportunity to photograph glittering mosaics, minarets and intricately tiled domes, and the bazaars and teahouses are a great place to people watch. For something more modern, head to the Tashkent metro where each station is a work of art, a nice contrast with the ancient madrassahs. 

Top Tip

Uzbekistan can get very cold in the winter so it is a less popular time to visit for most people, but perfect for photographers! There will be fewer tourists in the way of your shots, and even though the days are crisp, you’re likely to get gorgeous blue skies and perfect lighting to emphasise the buildings you’ll want to capture. You can also practise your night photography in Samarkand, when the Registan lights up and you can compare its glittering beauty from day to night.


For some of the most epic mountain scenery you’re likely to ever capture, Pakistan is an absolute must. In Karimabad, you’ll be spoilt for choice with panoramic views boasting seven 7000m peaks and waking up in Chitral will reveal such heavenly vistas that you’ll have to remind yourself to put the camera down and take it all in with your own eyes. We could even credit this striking image of the Hussaini Hanging Bridge in the remote Gilgit-Baltistan region for selling some of our Pakistan tours, which just goes to show the immense impact a photograph can have. 

But as with most destinations, it’s not all about the landscapes. The people of Pakistan are so friendly that you’ll get some incredible portrait images if that’s more your style. This especially goes for our friends, the Kalash people. This pagan tribe is a delight to respectfully photograph, and if you catch a spring, summer or winter festival, you’ll see their unique traditions burst into kaleidoscopic life. There won’t be many other people with photographs like that.

Papua New Guinea

Papua New Guinea might just be a photographer’s paradise. Not your average holiday destination, prepare to be transported back to the golden age of exploration. You’re unlikely to meet many people with these kinds of travel credentials under their belt, which adds to its allure. Home to over a thousand cultural groups, each cultivating its expressive forms of dance, art and costume, the country is also rich in rainforests, mangroves and swampland, with indigenous flora and fauna unseen elsewhere, including an incredible population of bird species. So, whether you prefer to focus on people, landscapes or nature, you’ll have it all at your fingertips in Papua New Guinea. 

But without a doubt, the highlight of your travels here will be witnessing the sheer cultural diversity. You can watch the rituals of the crocodile men of the Sepik River, where they cut their skin to resemble the teeth marks of the great crocodile spirit, the village ladies of the Kalam, known for their impressive helmets covered in beetle heads, prepare food for a “mumu” feast, and, of course, witness the famous Goroka Show or Hagen Festival, where tribes from across the region gather for one of the most colourful events in the world.


An amazing destination for connecting with people and history, Ethiopia is also a bit of an all-rounder when it comes to taking some great photos. The landscapes are monumental, from the rugged peaks and National Parks of the Simien Mountains where endemic gelada monkeys and walia ibex roam, to the otherworldly beauty of the Danakil Depression, one of the world’s hottest environments, and you’ll feel like you’ve travelled back in time at the famous UNESCO rock-hewn churches of Lalibela, which makes for a very striking subject. 

As is often the case, the people of Ethiopia are incredibly hospitable, so be sure to enjoy their company over their world-famous coffee or a meal of delicious injera. If you venture down to the Omo Valley, you’ll also discover the ancient customs and traditional ceremonies of the indigenous communities that call the south home. 


Boasting rich cultural experiences and diverse landscapes, Bolivia is a mesmerising destination that will captivate travel photography enthusiasts. From the otherworldly Salar de Uyuni Salt Flats, where the sky mirrors the earth in an ethereal union, to the dramatic Andes, Geysers of Sol de Mañana and the shimmering emerald-green Laguna Verde which changes colour with the movement of the sun, these stunning scenes are complemented by picturesque pink flamingoes, wild guanaco and giant cactus.

In the vibrant markets of La Paz, teeming with bright textiles and buzzing with energy, you’ll discover vendors selling herbs, potions and amulets for use in the traditional rituals practised all over Bolivia, and venture to Lake Titicaca to learn about the island’s which are sacred to the indigenous populations that have settled there. The photo opportunities here are endless.

Special mention goes to…

The surreal landscapes of Namibia, like the dunes and dead trees casting shadows at sunrise and sunset in Sossusvlei and the wind-scoured shipwrecks that litter the Skeleton Coast, are so striking that your images might look more like artwork than photographs. There’s also plenty of hardy wildlife to take your breath away, so be sure to pack a good zoom lens.

Georgia and Jordan are both great destinations for capturing local artisans and tradesmen, which can in turn help support locally-run initiatives established to promote and empower the local people. This is a wonderful way to take photographs that can be mutually beneficial to both parties.

Gorgeous autumn foliage, pretty pink spring blossom, ancient landmarks and modern metropolises, snow monkeys relaxing in volcanic hot springs and shinkansen bullet trains cutting through the landscapes - you’re in for a truly eclectic portfolio of images in Japan.

Top Tip:

Head to Akihabara in Tokyo to shop for discounted, new and used cameras and equipment. 

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