All you need to know about photo tours

A photo tour is a journey, the main purpose of which is photography. For many photographers, a photography tour is the best way to improve their photography skills and become a traveler at the same time.

Usually, photo tours take place in picturesque places with beautiful natural landscapes or ancient cities.

As a rule, in photo tours, they travel in small groups (about 8-10 people), but sometimes there are fewer. A small number of participants allows the organizer to pay more personal attention to each participant they invite.

There are many options for tours: sports, entertainment, sightseeing, wedding, event, adventure, business, and others. We will talk specifically about photo tours.

Photo tour (photo travel) – an organized trip to various places in the world in order to get beautiful photos or learn photography. In the photo tour, the emphasis is placed on visiting natural sites or cities during regular hours – those hours when this place looks most attractive.

Typically, photography tours also include photography training elements from a photographer accompanying or organizing a photography tour.

Photo tours

  • Landscape. Purpose – photography of landscapes, nature. The main task is to photograph nature at the best possible time, to convey the beauty of the place. More often photo tours are focused on various natural phenomena or seasons.
  • Animalistic. The goal is to photograph animals or birds in their natural habitat. As a rule, such photo tours are organized in national parks or reserves of different countries.
  • Genre. The goal is to photograph the daily life of people in other countries or cultural events.

How to find a photo tour?

There are several ways to find a photo tour:

  • Personal sites of photographers. For many landscape photographers, organizing photo tours are the main source of income, so they post information on all proposed trips for the next year on their websites.
  • Photosites. Some photo sites advertise photo tours by photographers. For example, National Geographic.
  • Photography schools. Some photography schools organize photography tours and offsite workshops under the guidance of photography school teachers or invited photographers.
  • Travel agencies. Some travel agencies organize photo tours in collaboration with photographers or photography equipment manufacturers.
  • Instagram. Instagram bloggers with a large number of followers also often organize photo trips to different parts of the world in order to take beautiful photos for Instagram. Bloggers, as a rule, post information about travel in their accounts.

The minimum set of photographic equipment for a photo tour

General recommendations for individual equipment that a photographer needs to take with him on a photo tour:

  • Camera (cameras) and optics (lenses). Most photographs always have two cameras – the main one and the spare one. There are no special requirements for the camera. The main thing is the presence of manual settings and remote control.
  • Memory cards. It often happens that there is no place to buy additional memory cards on the road, so it is better to buy them in advance. It is recommended to take several medium-sized cards (32, 64 gigabytes) with you so that in the event of a breakdown or loss of a memory card, you do not lose all the footage.
  • Batteries or chargers for the camera and flash. It’s better to carry an extra charged battery or power bank with you than to be left without a camera at the most inopportune moment. Focus on the amount of power your camera uses and the number of days off power sources.
  • Tripod. In landscape and animalism, a good stable tripod is indispensable. The lack of a tripod can make it impossible for you to shoot at slow shutter speeds in low light.
  • Release cable or remote control. Needed to reduce camera shake when pressing the shutter release button. Most prefer the remote, as you are independent of the length of the cable, and the remotes are often programmable as well.
  • Photo filters. It is best to have a UV protective filter on each lens. Additionally, Polarizing and ND filters are helpful for shooting in non-standard conditions.
  • Optics cleaners. Indispensable for photography. Often, the lenses get dust, dirt, sand, water. It is better to clean the camera and optics before shooting than to spend hours in the editor on processing frames. Also, for the same reasons, it is important to clean the camera matrix before the photo tour.
  • A backpack or bag for carrying lenses and cameras. The main criterion is convenience. The second is the safety of the equipment. As a rule, you have to walk to the most interesting points of the survey, and the weather conditions can change dramatically. You need to be sure of the safety of your photographic equipment in order to concentrate on photography.

In long photo tours, it is advisable to have a laptop or drive with you for copying and storing the captured photos. All the more often, the photo guide conducts consultations on the material filmed during the day. Viewing photos on a laptop screen is much more convenient than on a camera screen.

When you choose one or another type of trip, decide for yourself what result you want to achieve: collect stories and adventures or make beautiful shots. When you go on a photo tour, the opportunity to get caught up in stories that you can then tell your friends and subscribers is minimal.

It is worth remembering that besides you, there will be other people in the group who can film something similar at this very moment. Do not get hung up on this, everyone has their own vision anyway. Better use this opportunity to chat with like-minded people, learn something new, see the world with different eyes.


Cancun photography adventures & training in the Riviera Maya – These photography adventures and training are unique itineraries designed for travelers that seek something more than just a simple holiday. Choose a suggested route and enjoy the ride and increase your photography skills.

These private photography excursions are led by the photography coach, Joshua Ardoin.  More info can be found at his site regarding excursions and private photography lessons РSpoton Photographer

Have a good travel!