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Where should your next vacation be with your camera?

KH6JPK film camera with sunglasses and compass on map
LightField Studios Inc. / Alamy Stock Photo

Over 1 billion people travelled internationally last year. It’s no wonder the travel industry is booming when you can now find, book and pay for a full package holiday in the time it takes to make a cup of tea. While there may be a continuing rise in the number of people travelling, the way we’re doing so is changing.

The norm for a vacation has primarily been the typical beach or city type trip with your family, friends or partner, but today’s generation are pushing away from the confines of this typical behaviour. There is an opportunity to show this in your stock photography by capturing this change in peoples behaviour.

Back-to-basics

It was about 6 years ago when my dad decided to buy his first VW campervan; it was his pride and joy. He fitted a new rock and roll bed, made a new kitchen and fitted far too many drawers than what was necessary – it was a mini-home.

Dad’s an avid fisherman so family trips often involved us camping overnight when my brother and I were younger. The campervan was the next step up. That summer we travelled to Croyde; all four of us crammed into the converted camper, surf boards on the roof ready to go. Croyde is a lovely village in North Devon which welcomes billions of campervans every summer.

If Dad drove past another VW driver, they’d casually roll down their windows and give each other a big old wave as if they’d known each other for years. It’s like a private club for the proud owners of VW campervans. It was a great holiday; we’d spend the days surfing, or in my case trying to and we’d visit the nearby towns followed by an evening of wine and laughs with family and friends as the sun set.

Family members had owned their campers long before we had ours. I would say they converted us as we’d always been on the typical beach vacation before. The following summers we travelled in the campervan to Croyde; it became the norm.

PJD6C4 Woman camping, climbing up to SUV rooftop tent in idyllic mountain field, Alberta, Canada
Hero Images Inc. / Alamy Stock Photo

 

Today, this type of vacation has become popular. The back-to-basics type of trip that people are enjoying just as much as a 2-week beach escape to the Canaries. It’s much more affordable and offers people a relaxing break to destress from the demands of normal life.

Being outside often increases a person’s activity levels which means camping is good for your health and your mind. With the lack of phone signal in most campsites people are also disconnected from the stress of work or home life. Since 2014 more people are now camping, with over six million new camping households. Campers are now venturing out as often as three times per year – that’s 64% more since 2014!

There are some beautiful locations around the world you can camp at and experience the relaxing lifestyle that comes with spending your vacation in this way. VW have also just announced their new electric campers if you don’t fancy converting one, but I must say, if you like being creative, then converting your own camper is a lot of fun. There are some great photo opportunities when camping so take the opportunity to capture some great moments.

For inspiration and ideas on shooting this kind of imagery, check out this lightbox

 

Here are some shoot suggestions:

For the surfers:

  • VW owners waving to each other as they drive past.
  • Think about action shots in the water and be creative. If you have an underwater case for your camera or own a GoPro, even better. Alamy needs more underwater action shots.
  • Authentic photos of families carrying their boards and kit down to the beach.

For the foodies:

  • Families on a camping vacation often eat differently to when at home. Photograph the different ways people cook.
  • Find out what the place is known for food-wise. You may find that the area you’re staying in has its own cuisine.
  • To what extent do people go back to basics – I once saw a boy cooking noodles above a fire in an old bake bean tin.

For the scenery lovers:

  • This is a great opportunity for shooting drone photography, you could shoot above the campsite and capture just how many people really have set up around you.
  • There are normally some great treks around camp sites. Go beyond the path and see what you can find.

The solo traveller

There has been a significant increase in solo travel in the last 5 years. With the world at their fingertips, people are now travelling alone rather than with partners or friends. People feel free to explore places they want without having to check with somebody else. It’s also much easier. There is no longer the need for a physical map or a struggle to understand another language – Google Maps and Translator have made the world the solo traveller’s oyster.

While I can’t think of anything more nail biting, I can see why solo travelling can be truly life-changing. As a photographer I can relate to the fact it’s sometimes difficult to expect your partner to stop every 5 minutes while you wait for the light to fall perfectly on your subject. This is where solo travel and photography seem perfectly compatible. While searching for places to travel alone, I think I’ve realised it could be amazing…

HN5JFN Young woman planning vacation using world map and compass along with other travel accessories. Tourist wearing brown hat looking at the world map.
Jacob Lund / Alamy Stock Photo

If you’re planning a solo vacation, here are some locations that we have picture needs for:

  • Kimberley Coast – Australia
  • Cervia and Fiumicino – Italy
  • Sierksdorf – Germany
  • Ladder Street – Hong Kong
  • Straits View – Singapore
  • Bayan Palace – Kuwait
  • Beypore Beach – India
  • Bhadra Wildlife Sanctuary – India
  • Bothe Napa Valley State Park – California
  • Currumbin Alley, Queensland – Australia
  • New Zealand cityscapes

Take inspiration from our lightbox and see how fellow photographers have captured their own vacation in locations that are great to visit alone.

Wellbeing

Wellness tourism is the fastest-growing travel sector says Lonely Planet. This is because people are reflecting more on their own wellbeing as conversations around mental health become less stigmatised. More so now than ever, people are thinking about taking care of themselves by doing things like going for a swim on their lunch break to attending yoga classes.

This has also affected how people are now planning their vacation. People are consciously deciding to take trips that offer yoga classes where they can eat healthier or even smaller things such as finding out if there are long walks in the area. This trend is more relevant than ever in todays society of fitness and health fanatics.

People are using their vacations to detox, relax and energise themselves. Companies are now realising that people are more wellness-conscious and are adapting their facilities to this. Founded in 2016, BookRetreats have been named the ‘Airbnb of yoga’ by Lonely Planet allowing customers to book breaks with a focus on unwinding and becoming healthier.

KTM9CT Woman waking up in bed in the morning, view from window on tropical garden. Lifestyle photo
Oleg Breslavtsev / Alamy Stock Photo

In May this year, I went on a vacation to Majorca and stayed at a spa hotel. It was the first time I’d stayed at a spa hotel abroad and it was obvious that the guests’ wellbeing was at the forefront of the hotel’s mission. I felt rejuvenated, relaxed and fresh, ready for my return to work. The spa was beautifully decorated with tiny blue tiles and had great views of the sea – a great photo opportunity for an interior photographer. Barbados, Fiji and Mozambique are all locations we have picture needs for that offer some very relaxing retreats and some beautifully picturesque locations.

There are plenty of shoot ideas to be considered while on a wellness break, here is a lightbox to inspire you and here are some shoot suggestions:

  • People participating in paddle board yoga.
  • Consider the food that is being offered while on these retreats, you often find they take healthy to a new extreme, but just how extreme!
  • Children are now being introduced to yoga in school classes. Consider looking for children participating in yoga with their parents on vacation.

This blog post started because of my interest in how people are changing the way they travel today and why they are doing so. Vacations are a great way to experience and photograph new cultures that you couldn’t capture from your own doorstep. These popular ways of travelling could offer some great new experiences. Don’t forget to take your camera and document the whole journey along the way!

 

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