Last Updated: February 5th
Instagram has helped level the travel industry playing field. We can all go out and score evocative photos, then post them on our feeds. Still, there are a plenty of brave adventurers out there who’ve thrown off the cubicle yoke and devoted their lives to making art while traveling. They’re celebrating the world while giving us a window into all those enticing places that are over the hills and far away.
We decided to round up some of the best travel photographers on Instagram right now. We whittled a monstrous list down to thirty-five stellar sets of eyes, all of whom capture this world in a thrilling way.
ANDREEA ROSIANU – 4.3k Followers
We have to be honest and note Andreea Rosianu isn’t a professional travel photographer. She actually makes dolls for a living. But perhaps, it is her innate creativity and whimsy that makes her travel photos so likely to please viewers on a deep level and leave them with a smile on their face.
Her photographs don’t stick to the standard vistas a lot of camera-toting travelers capture so well. Instead, her images use muted palettes punctuated with bright colors. And if she is in a shot, she’s usually posing like she is having the most fun humanly possible. Her photos not only make you wish you were there, you wish you could be her. She’s like human Prozac.
THOMAS QUAN – 4.8k Followers
Thomas Quan is a digital creative with seven years experience working in advertising, so he has done all kinds of brand building with big-name corporations. But we are more interested in the way that he uses his skills to capture landscapes from across the globe.
Quan’s eye makes for perfect compositions, whether they are aerial views of a serpentine line of boats in Lago Di Braies, geishas chortling in Kyoto, or a grass-roofed cottage in Iceland. It’s hard not to be enchanted by the moments he captures. His work is deffo travel inspo, but each image also serves as a narrative aside that leaves you making up the rest of the story in your head.
JODY MACDONALD – 115k Followers
Jody MacDonald lives a life of adventure that most of us could only dream of. She spends years at sea, exploring the hidden corners of the planet — para-sailing, surfing, and taking photos of the places few dare to go.
MacDonald’s photos are windows into the wider world, one that remains a mystery to many of us. Her eye on humanity transports us to each locale she visits and gives us someone to talk to when we arrive. MacDonald’s photography is real, unfiltered, and full of love for humanity.
THREE IF BY SEA – 71.7K Followers
Okay, fine. This is a little bit of a cheat. Instead of one photog, we’re actually highlighting three bros — Nainoa, Makana, and Kapono. But their shared view of the world is so grand, and their photos are so very evocative, that it would be a crying shame not to highlight them.
Hawaii, the state that the trio behind @ThreeIfBySea call home, has obviously been loved by photographers for decades. But Nainoa, Makana, and Kapono see it through the eyes of local boys who’ve gone on to see the wider world and returned to share their unique viewpoints. Their images give you an idea of the size and scope of Hawaii’s wonders and are always filled with a sense of joy.
KRYSTLE WRIGHT – 74.4k Followers
Krystle Wright takes photos of amazing people performing amazing feats in amazing places. To do this, you kind of have to be willing to take amazing risks with a camera. It all adds up to something… well… amazing.
Wright’s eye and eagerness for adventure has made her one of the world’s best adventure photographers. Her feed is full of globetrotting adrenaline rushes. Her photos have the dual function of getting you amped for your day and getting you excited about hitting the road.
RICHARD l’ANSON – 40.7k Followers
Richard l’Anson brings a vibrant slice of humanity to every shot. His work is a technicolor transportation to a land of bright colors and new traditions, all pulsating with life.
The world l’Anson gives us on Instagram is awash in motley hues, bathed in golden light, and anchored in the diverse lives of his subjects. l’Anson gives you a heavy dose that leaves you wanting more and more until you finally decide you have to go out into the world and see those wonderous sites for yourself.
TIFFANY NGUYEN – 341k Followers
Tiffany Nguyen is a dentist from LA. When she’s not at work, she likes to travel and take photos of her surroundings. And wow — she’s great at it.
Nguyen’s work is a warm hug on a cold night. Tungsten bathes icy mountain towns. Water acts as nature’s mirror for mammoth craggy peaks. The most drastically beautiful parts of the world light up this Instagram feed. If Nguyen’s photos don’t inspire you to hit the road, then nothing will.
STEPHEN DUPONT – 9.7k Followers
There’s a rawness to Stephen Dupont’s photography. It evokes the complexity of humanity and this world in ways that you may not always be comfortable with — but you still want to be there somehow. It’s a dark world full of people just trying to get by alongside one another.
Dupont’s work isn’t about showing you the happy, shining people of the world. It’s about the grit beneath the surface. It’s the unpolished planet. It’s where the people who toil in the polished resorts of the Instagram influencers feeds actually work, live, love, and die.
DANIEL KORDAN – 966k Followers
Daniel Kordan brings a warmth and whimsy to his travel photography that makes him truly stand above the crowd. His photos are washed in a haze, which somehow makes them feel more visceral.
Kordan’s photos blend the wonders of the natural world, humanity, and location into a cohesive whole. Each photo is like a postcard from another time and place that you can’t quite pin down; but, you know you have to go there.
SAM EVANS – 196k Followers
Sam Evans lives an enviable life. He trots all over the globe, taking photos of this beautiful, wild world. It’s a pretty dope gig. Evans’ photography is majestic. There’s a real sense of the grand scale of the planet.
Following Evans’ Instagram feed is a delight for the senses. Evans’ photos will draw you into the wonders of crystal clear reefs and snow-capped peaks. There are amazing beaches and mystical cities on the horizon. More than anything, Evans’ feed is an affirmation that all that saving for the perfect trip is 100-percent worth it.
MATIKA WILBUR – 3.8k Followers
Matika Wilbur travels North America capturing moments with the continent’s indigenous population. Wilbur’s photography is a glimpse into the modern life of an ancient people. It’s a window into daily life in Indian Country.
As Wilbur travels the 562 Indian reservations across America, she captures an honest insight into one of the most misunderstood and underrepresented groups of Americans. Her feed is a part travelogue and part ethnography of the beauty of Native America. Following Wilbur’s feed is a peak into an America rarely seen.
DAVID THOMPSON – 37.8k Followers
David Thompson’s eye for the natural world is second to none. Thompson’s Instagram feed is a beautiful glimpse into the natural lines, curves, and colors of this planet. This a true nature-lovers feed — with precisely composed shots of some of the wildest corners of the globe.
Relishing the beauty of nature is the best reason to follow Thompson. He’ll draw you in and the next thing you’ll know, you’ll be looking up flights to Bolivia or New Mexico to see each wonder for yourself, which is probably why he was featured by Nikon as part of their #Nikon100 event.
JERAD ARMIJO – 19.5k Followers
Jerad Armijo is a landscape expert who throws some amazing work up on his Instagram feed. Armijo’s photography transports you to a far-flung, nearly-magical land with every picture.
Following his feed offers a chance for relaxation and fantasy (pirate caves and hidden beaches), spiked with dreams of adventure. There’s a real sense of space in Armijo’s photography that transports you. And, he was also acknowledged by Nikon as a member of the #Nikon100 on Instagram.
MINA YOUNG LEE – 46.1k Followers
Mina Young Lee speaks to us because she is a woman who moved to Southern California, picked up a professional grade camera, and made a life for herself. We show up to her feed for the great images of her in exotic locations with her boyfriend and her dog, but we also walk away appreciative of the messages in her captions. She details the work she does to reach locations and emphasizes both her power to succeed and everyone else’s.
This isn’t a photographer focusing solely on her beauty in a series of exotic locales. Lee isn’t always standing serenely looking into the distance. Sometimes, she is hauling a 65-pound dog on her back as she hikes steep falls, or she’s preparing to make a 20-mile trek with a sprained ankle. She’s a badass.
SAM REBUYACO – 4.6k Followers
Sam Rebuyaco’s photography is a gateway drug for wanderlust. There’s a definite #blessed vibe to all the photos. But they still draw you into a unique view of the world, through Rebuyaco’s keen eye. It’s bright, engaging, and will drive you to see more of this wondrous planet of ours.
Rebuyaco’s travels around the globe score high on the inspirational-scale. There’s a certain simple beauty to her photography that engages you and draws you towards setting out and seeing the world for yourself.
BRIAN CHORSKI – 10.6k Followers
Brian Chorski is winnowing out a niche as a top destination lifestyle photographer, and he is doing it with shots abroad and in his home, San Francisco. One thing he does exceedingly well is to reveal sides of destinations that you won’t see anywhere else. Even if he’s hitting the most popular monuments and locales on Instagram, he’s always finding unique angles.
Followers will come to love his aesthetic, which involves a moody color palette and a fair amount of exposure. In some shots, the sun burnishes the edge of rocks in bright copper tones. In others, the fog settles atop trees and gives things a touch of Tolkien. But, throughout, it’s modern and emotionally charged.
JOHN BILDERBACK – 1.9k Followers
John Bilderback has been following the epic and historical journey of the Hokule’a — a ‘waʻa kaulua,’ or double hauled Polynesian voyage vessel — around the globe. Following Bilderback’s Instagram is worth it for that alone. But there’s so much more from the iconic photographer at play on his feed.
Bilderback has been a premiere surf photographer for over 20 years and peppers his Instagram feed with wicked surf photography, life in the Pacific, and a travelogue of the Hokele’a’s journey. This is an essential follow for the adventurous ocean lover.
LAURENCE NORAH – 45.4k Followers
We love people who drop their 9-to-5, snatch up a camera, and create a career for themselves. And we worship Nat Geo’s photography. So, of course, we are so down with Laurence Norah, a corporate man turned Nat Geo snapping, award-winning travel photographer. Inspired by his father’s tales of moving to Australia and doing odd jobs for a couple years, Norah, left an eight-year career in software development and management consultancy to begin a career with a Canon digital SLR that his parents had given him.
Followers of this Instagram account will get to accompany Norah as he travels the world. One day, it’s sunset in France and another is street art from Aberdeen or the world’s best beach in Seychelles. Every image is rich and vibrant and full of the exact recipe needed to cook up some wanderlust proper.
MAX LOWE – 100k Followers
Max Lowe’s eye captures a beautiful world full of enrapturing sites, people, and life. Lowe’s photography takes you from the towering skyscrapers of megacities to the deepest canyons on earth.
This is comprehensive travel photography at its best. There’s great surf photography, nature, animals, people, and moments of life strewn throughout the feed that’ll draw you in and tempt you onto the open road.
ERRIN CASANO – 93.6k Followers
Errin Casano has spent the last few years taking spectacular photos of gorgeous locales while on break from university. During that time, she developed a crew called All About Adventures and a following online. And, now, she gets to work with brands like Eddie Bauer. As such, her photos function in multiple ways: They inspire travel, delight viewers, showcase an adventure crew in action, and play a role in marketing (which is part of the game, obviously).
Followers of Casano’s account can expect shots from South Dakota, Vancouver, and Bali to be posted in succession. It’s a reminder of the beauty that exists near all of us and that there’s plenty of fun out in the natural world.
LAUREN RANDOLPH – 224k Followers
Lauren Randolph’s travel photography turns the lens on the people she encounters across the globe. The breathtaking vistas are there, along with the beaches and canyons. Each place is punctuated by a local who lives a life in that spot.
Randolph’s eye on the human aspect of travel is a unique and engaging way to see the world. It’s a fantastic window into the reality of travel that feels visceral. After all, it’s the people we meet along the road that have the greatest impact on our travels.
KAREN NG – 51.1k Followers
Karen Ng’s compositions are a blend of light, geometry, and life. Each photo has a uniformity that creates a curated vision of the world, where lines dominate an over-exposed world.
Ng’s feed is a must follow for the wholly unique look at the world. You’ll be treated to a look at the Far East in a way that’s almost ethereal and a little overwhelming at the same time — much like real travel.
GIANLUCA FELLINI – 6.6k Followers
Gianluca Fellini’s feed is a bit of an outlier. Fellini posts scenes in threes, so you have to live through Fellini’s feed three photos at a time — where each triptych transports you to a person and place that’s new and enticing.
Granted the three photo trick on Instagram may be a bit off-putting at first. Allow it to draw you in and take you somewhere new. You won’t be disappointed.
DR. ANDREW PEACOCK – 13.2k Followers
Some people seduce us with the images they post on Instagram, and some people do it by living amazing lives that we want to emulate. Dr. Andrew Peacock does both. He is an award-winning photographer, which is amazing by itself. But, he’s also an outdoor athlete and expedition doctor who accompanies travelers on their adventures and keeps them healthy. Who doesn’t want to be that guy or enjoy his photos?
Followers get quintessentially gorgeous travel shots of mountain ranges and penguins and glaciers, but they are lushly composed, bordering on unbelievable. It makes you want to pick up and hit the road just so you can see what the good doctor has seen.
ATESSA FARMAN – 1.2k Followers
A student at the University of California, Santa Cruz, Atessa Farman only uses analog film in her work, so the aesthetic is very different than the meticulously processed images you see in a typical travel photographer’s ‘Gram. Plus, her blend of female figure studies and awe-inspiring vistas is a heady combo of the miraculous ways nature works — in all its forms.
Followers can check out a lot of pics of her friends frolicking in Thailand, attendees at music festivals, and a lot of shots from Australia, where her partner on the website Sydney to Santa Cruz lives. And, they are all 35 mm goodness.
SARAH BYDEN – 18.9k Followers
You know we are all about that vanlife, so it’s no surprise that we are smitten with images of Byden and her partner making their way around Australia like the vagabonds we wish we could be. It’s especially appealing as snow falls in The States to check out two smiling people in bathing suits jumping into ocean water and sunning themselves in natural hot springs.
An Instagram follow of this vanliving traveler does mean your feed will be ripe with bathing beauty shots, as well as a lot of shots showing what it’s like to live on the road. If you are interested in Australia, this account is a great window into the country and all of its natural beauty, including the outback. If you don’t get a real desire to book a flight, we will be shocked.
TRAVIS BURKE – 830k Followers
Do we love a person who lives in a van, or do we LOVE them? Travis Burke is just such a dude and he specializes in awesome shots of national parks — whose lakes, mountains, and trails become magical through his lens. And, since Burke is a surfer, skateboarder, scuba diver, and tightrope walker, you can bet he makes a flipping fantastic subject in these gorgeous natural settings.
Because really: Who doesn’t love a well-composed shot of a man walking thousands of feet over the Yosemite Valley on a wire?
Followers will see not only the natural beauty of our park system but also the many, many stupid cool activities you can do in them. As the man himself note on one of his pics: “Pack up a car, drive for a few hours, and I guarantee you can find new adventures and truly incredible landscapes. Get out there!”
ADAM DAVIS – 21.9k Followers
Adam Davis is a master of the light. The talented photographer’s Instagram account is chock full of images that make you acutely aware of the power of the sun. Whether it’s light is beaming from behind the peaks of mountains or illuminating the sands of a dune, illumination serves to highlight further the beauty of nature. And, this man knows nature.
Followers can expect things like long exposure shots from Iowa, brilliant blankets of stars over mountains in Colorado, and filter-free shots of Bryce Canyon National Park. Occasionally wildlife and human subjects work their way into the images, but the real focus is on stunning natural landscapes. In addition to earlier photographers, David is also a member of the amazing crew Nikon gathered for the #Nikon100.
NATHAN SZWARC – 16.9k Followers
Based in Knoxville, Nathan Szwarc loves to travel, and he has developed a signature sense of color that makes the images he takes feel wholly unique. Growing up in East Tennessee and North Carolina, Szwarc spent a lot of time outdoors and developed an aversion to what he sees as the monotonous green tone of spring and summer — so he desaturates a lot of the green in his images, rendering some real contrast, rather than the overblown saturation many Instagrammers prefer.
Followers will really enjoy seeing Szwarc’s approach to color at play in recent shots from Hawaii and the Pacific Northwest, some of the greenest places ever. And, shout out to another photographer who made it onto the #Nikon100 list on Instagram.
JOSEPH WATROUS – 171k Followers
A teaching professional, Joseph Watrous offers one-on-one photo workshops in the Pacific Northwest. And, that means people in that region are very, very lucky — because the dude knows his stuff. In his mind, mother nature is the true artist. And Watrous is simply exploring nature with his camera because he truly loves it and finds photography to be an extension of that experience. The reverence with which he views the outdoors is clear in his images.
Watrous account is a great place to see images from throughout his backyard in Oregon, Idaho, and Washington. But, it’s also a nice hub for tying the beauty of nature to some philosophical truths about living a full life, something he encourages with his captions. Plus, he frequently lists his gear and settings along with images to help guide fellow photographers. And, he is another #Nikon100 photographer.
BALDEMAR FIERRO – 1.4k Followers
Baldemar Fierro spends far more time on his art than he spends promoting it. That’s fine with us, e found his work early and have stayed mega fans — asking his advice often and hiring him every chance we get.
Fierro’s feed is moody and thoughtful. There’s little desire to show pretty people in pretty places. Instead, he focuses on evocative details and odd angles. This isn’t the feed for you if you want more oversaturated beach vibes — instead, it’s art-focused and will help you see the world in a whole new way.
PATRICK MUELLER – 2.9k Followers
A Lord of the Rings reference in his handle and a love for epic vistas? Yes, we’re so here for @ohtombombadil — the account of nature photog Patrick Mueller.
This feed is full of lush, large-scale nature scenes. Though Mueller isn’t overly manipulative with Photoshop, his images do often seem as cheery and in-love-with-the-world as his upbeat, wonder-filled captions. This is a great follow who wants to be reminded that there is beauty in our natural world and that beauty isn’t simply relegated to idyllic beaches.
HAYLEY ANDERSON – 259k Followers
Haylen Anderson’s feed is full of lush images, with a very particular palette and aesthetic. The vibe definitely works for her — she’s got 259K followers and her Lightroom presets are for sale on her page.
Sometimes we all head to Instagram looking for a little travel envy and this account certainly provides it. The images, devoid of crowds and full of warmth, are a call to action. We don’t just want to travel to the same spots Hayley visits, we want to travel like her: Approaching the world with an airy lightness and an appreciation of simple joys.
CODY DREW DUNCAN – 40.8k Followers
We’re mega-stans of Cody Drew Duncan. His images all have a feel of, “How’d he find that?” With a dose of “How do I get there?”
Do these pictures look like the pages of Kinfolk magazine, where everyone wears Navajo blankets wrapped around their shoulders and cool hats on their heads? Yes, indeed. But it’s a world we want to be inside — which is especially easy because Duncan’s imagery is so very transportive.
RYAN RESATKA – 322k Followers
Lots of photogs can nail beaches and crystalline water, but it’s nice to finish up with an artist who focuses on the earthy tones of the planet’s cooler climes. Ryan Resataka is definitely one of Instagram’s photography cool kids, but his images feel like a major departure from the typical beach photos of the Madlives and the Philippines.
Follow this feed for colder colors and images of hidden nooks and crannies. You’ll leave wanting to explore our nation better, and see it through a new lens. Since Resatka often shares images of skaters rolling along lonely landscapes, you may also end up motivated to get yourself a board.