The 25 Best Places in the World to Photograph

American Photo: Top documentary and travel photographers choose their favorite locations.

Lakes District, Austria

Lakes District, Austria

Lakes District, Austria: "It offers landscape photographers calm lakes with reflections, surrounded by tall standing mountains. The light varies throughout the day from morning fog to romantic sunsets," says Coulson.Sissy Brimberg and Cotton Coulson
Baja, Mexico

Baja, Mexico

Baja, Mexico: "These people work in color, which is what I work in," says Turner of prominent architects in Baja, Mexico. "In a lot of the hotels, people just go crazy with colors, so you can sometimes shoot right where you stay."Pete Turner
Oman

Oman

Oman: "The contrast between the barren desolate landscape and the ornate ancient architecture seems like the ultimate balance between man and nature."Jen Judge
Syrian Arab Republic

Syrian Arab Republic

Syrian Arab Republic: "The biggest, best Crusader castles are there as well as the Dead Cities [some 700 abandoned settlements]. The ruins of Palmyra dating from the 1st century rise in the desert, and Damascus and Aleppo [whose citadel is pictured] are beautiful ancient cities."Peter Aaron
Masai Mara National Reserve, Kenya

Masai Mara National Reserve, Kenya

Masai Mara National Reserve, Kenya: "The incredible variety of animals and the access to them has been drawing Cox to regularly shoot in Kenya for some 12 years. "Kenya has fewer restrictions on what the drivers can or can't do, plus the game guides are very educated. It's very productive photographically."Daniel Cox
Arctic

Arctic

Arctic: "Polar bears and walruses are fascinating creatures. We need images to show people that if we don't change our lifestyle, they could soon disappear."Daisy Gilardini
Antarctica

Antarctica

Antarctica: "I will always be exploring ecosystems, documenting what is disappearing due to climate change. We are losing a lot more than just ice."Paul Nicklen
Pantanal, Brazil

Pantanal, Brazil

Pantanal, Brazil: "It's the wildlife of the Amazon — parrots, jaguars, giant anteaters — but out in the open. If you go in the dry season, when the birds congregate there, it's really a magical place."Joel Sartore
Sicily, Italy

Sicily, Italy

Sicily, Italy: Andrea Pistolesi is drawn to Sicily, "especially during the religious and traditional festivals when the island's roots — reaching back to the ancient Greeks and the Arabs — influence this deeply Catholic society, making for unique situations for the photographer."Andrea Pistolesi
New Guinea

New Guinea

New Guinea: "You can still find people living totally off the land, knowing nothing of cultures beyond their valleys. That's one of the reasons I go back again and again. Plus it is visually extraordinary."
Hawai'i Volcanoes National Park, Hawaii

Hawai'i Volcanoes National Park, Hawaii

Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, Hawaii: "Next time I go, I will try to be as open as I can and let the place reveal its subtle secrets, resulting in a very different picture."Linda Connor
Four Corners, American Southwest

Four Corners, American Southwest

Four Corners, American Southwest: Tom Till, who says he's lucky to live in the Four Corners region, cites his home as having great light and great subjects, "the two elements you need in an almost endless supply."Tom Till
San Juan Mountains, Colorado

San Juan Mountains, Colorado

San Juan Mountains, Colorado: "In fall, the mountain slopes are covered with bronze and gold stands of aspen. In summer, the subalpine meadows are lush with wildflowers."Tim Fitzharris
Cote D'Azur, France

Cote D'Azur, France

Côte d'Azur, France: "There is such a wealth of scenes — from the Festival de Cannes to Monaco's Grand Prix, the rich bronzed bodies of Saint-Tropez and swimming pools filled to the brim with hyperactive, liberated kids."Damion Berger
Coral Triangle, Greater Indo-Pacific Region

Coral Triangle, Greater Indo-Pacific Region

Coral Triangle, Greater Indo-Pacific Region: "Beyond spectacular photo opportunities, this region is often sited as having some of the greatest biodiversity on the planet," says Burnett.Tanya G. Burnett and Kevin Palmer
New Zealand

New Zealand

New Zealand: When shooting underwater in his favored New Zealand, Brian Skerry recommends packing a range of lenses from superwide (such as 14mm) to macro (60m or 105mm). "There is such diversity, you'll want to shoot everything, from whales and seals to tiny creatures like nudibranchs and blennies."Brian Skerry
Jaipur India

Jaipur India

Jaipur, India: "Here in Jaipur, in the state of Rajasthan, I appreciate the aesthetic of Rajputana and Mughal architecture. The floating, intricate palaces are also especially striking."Andrea Fazzari
Denali National Park Preserve Alaska

Denali National Park Preserve Alaska

Denali National Park Preserve, Alaska: "There are few places in North America where one can see bears, wolves, caribou and moose all in the same day. Plus, the backdrop of the Alaska range contributes to the extraordinary beauty."Tom Mangelsen
Mongolia

Mongolia

Mongolia: "The challenges are getting to the locations," says Cannon of shooting in Mongolia. "But the country is full of culture: horse races, camel trekking, Mongolian wrestling, hunting with golden eagles. The only thing I found a shortage of was time."Brown W Cannon III
Xinjiang China

Xinjiang China

Xinjiang, China: "The expansion of powerful societies into foreign territories, and the destruction of local populations that get in the way, is a storyline that runs through the entire course of human history."Carolyn Drake
Red Sea

Red Sea

Red Sea: "Every place is unique. But the Red Sea's special beauty is its lush and rich coral reefs, including a lot of soft corals, as well as the animal and marine life found there."Jeff Rotman
Midway Atoll, Northwestern Hawaiian Islands

Midway Atoll, Northwestern Hawaiian Islands

Midway Atoll, Northwestern Hawaiian Islands: "Much of the wildlife of Midway Atoll has little fear of humans," says Middleton of shooting on Eastern Island in the atoll, part of the Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument.Susan Middleton
French Polynesia

French Polynesia

French Polynesia: Cobb cites the breathtaking beauty of the islands and the warmth of its people as unforgettable, but also comments on the emptiness as "a stark reminder of the devastation caused by the early explorers. These islands are haunted, and you will be too."Jodi Cobb
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(C) 2009 guidomueller.com(C) 2009 guidomueller.com
Namibia Africa

Namibia Africa

Namibia Africa by Duncan George. FlickrDuncan George
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