Best Camera for Travel Photography

Best Camera for Travel Photography

Very often people will ask us, “what’s the best camera for travel photography?” So, we’ve decided to write a post to cover a few of those questions.


Whilst it has been quoted, “The best camera, is the one that you have with you” there are a variety of points to bear in mind which we will look at.


It is the photographer’s vision

The possible options we have for the best camera for travel photography, range from using the camera on your phone, through to seriously expensive pro-gear. All these devices can be used to create beautiful photos. Also, remember that a camera is just a tool for taking photographs. No more, no less. So, there are several different issues we need to address! It is the photographer’s vision, not the equipment, that creates the stunning image. That said, some tools make photographing easier, and give better results than others.


Ally with her best camera for travel photography

Ally with her best camera for travel photography


Things you need to consider when buying a camera


How are you going to use your camera when travelling?

  • What do you want to photograph? Landscapes / portraits / architecture …
  • Do you want a good zoom facility?
  • Do you want to be able to get great depth of field?
  • Will you want to do selfies?
  • Will you have low light situations?
  • Will there be high contrast situations?
  • Do you want to carry it on you always?
  • Do you need to quickly upload to Social Media?
  • Do you need to be able to photograph moving subjects easily?
  • Will you want an adjustable back so you can hand-hold above your head?



Think about your budget, not just for the body of the camera (assuming you’re wanting to buy a camera with interchangeable lenses), but for all the things that go with it, like various lenses, filters, hand-grips, straps, memory cards, flash, tripods … Suddenly that reasonably price camera body takes on a whole new expense.



As gorgeous as that new pro Nikon or Canon feels in your hand in the shop, will it still feel so lovely when you’re halfway up a mountain and need to stop because your back aches from the weight? At that point, you won’t be thinking it’s the best camera for travel photography! On some flights, you are very limited with hand luggage weight and this could cause a problem.



Are you going to want to be able to move freely without lots of kit?
Would you like to be able to pop your camera in your bag? You can feel like you’ve missed so many photographic opportunities to shoot because your camera didn’t give you enough freedom to get to the scene.



Will there be times when you are out in the rain with your camera? You may need to consider one that is weather proof, or even waterproof. Does it need to be shock-proof?


Some for and against comparisons:



Fast to upload images to social mediaLess manual control
LightNo interchangeable lenses
SmallThe low light ability might not be that good
Great for selfies
Always have it on you

Mid-range fixed lens cameras

Reasonable quality sensor (although not usually full-frame)Lenses are usually a limited aperture
Fairly LightNot full-frame
Usually have reasonable zoom

DSLR or Mirrorless Full Frame

Can use ultra-wide aperture lensesExpensive
Can be extremely high qualityCan be intimidating for subjects
Interchangeable lensesWeight – makes your hand luggage on the plane heavy
Stunning low light abilityWeight - May restrict your photography
Can be large
Makes you ‘look’ like a photographer (subjects may want to charge you as you look professional)



So which one should you use?

There’s no hard and fast rule for this. Use whichever camera suits your style of photography. I (Ally) travel with a full frame Nikon DSLR and Tim with a full frame mirrorless Sony, but we try to have our cake and eat it by limiting the kit to a body with a zoom lens and a travel tripod.  We also take a small underwater point and shoot Nikon with us for when we’re in the water.


Tim shooting from the floor

Tim can often be found laying on the floor to get a great shot!


Vatican city using my best camera for travel photography

This was the image he was going for


In summary – when looking for the best camera for travel photography, list the main and most important things you want it for. Then find a camera (and lens/lenses) that fits that bill as well as your budget when you consider all the extras. One that isn’t going to weigh you down and stop you from photographic opportunities.


For technical specifications of cameras, impartial reviews and comparisons, check out This is our ‘go to’ website whenever we’re looking into cameras or equipment. Enjoy your travel photography!

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