Tag Archives: photo

Top 10 most photographed sights in Europe in 2017 according to Instagram

2017-05-16

Europe is the number one travel destination in the world. Especially, the historical cities of the continent attract tourists (at least, before they find the beaches and mountains). The most photographed sights of Europe are familiar for most travelers even they haven’t visited the sites themselves yet.

Here is ranking for the top 10 most photographed sights in Europe according to the social media photo service Instagram (via DW).

Paris, France, Europe, Eiffel tower

Paris, France. Eiffel tower in morning mist.


1. Eiffel Tower in Paris, France.

The Eiffel Tower is the most visited monument in the world that charges a fee from visitors. About 7 million tickets are sold annually, and who knows how many million tourists don’t want to queue up to the lifts but settle for taking selfies on the ground. Don’t start bargaining over the price if someone offers to sell you the Eiffel. It has been sold already – many times.

2. Tower Bridge in London, England.

It is the towers standing in the Thames River that make the Tower Bridge stand out from the other splendid sights of London. One might think that Big Ben would be the iconic place to take a photo in London, but the bridge is more popular.

Barcelona, Spain, Sacrada da Familia, design by Gaudi

La Sagrada Familia, Barcelona, Catalonia, Spain.


3. Sagrada Familia in Barcelona, Spain.

Two things, at least, will surprise you if you visit the Gaudi designed church in Barcelona: it is much bigger and impressive than any photo can ever tell, and it is still a construction site. The church is so big and complicated to build that the work started in 1882, and is planned to finish in 2026. In reality, it will never finish because older parts of the building already need renovation work. Nonetheless, it is one of the most remarkable man-made sights in the whole world.

4. Colosseum in Rome, Italy.

Tourists may queue up to the churches of the Vatican for hours, but the Colosseum is the most photographed sight in Rome. There was space for about 50 000 spectators in Colosseum in the glory days of Rome (who weren’t there for Russell Crowe).

5. Red Square in Moscow, Russia.

The Red Square has been a backdrop in so many movies (especially action films where a hot car chase crosses the square) that it may appear familiar even though you haven’t visited it. Other sights on the sides of the square include St. Basil’s Cathedral, the State Historical Museum, and Lenin’s Mausoleum.

6. Acropolis in Athens, Greece.

The remnants of a fortress have been guarding the city of Athens for over 3000 years. It has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site for 30 years.

berlin, branderburger gate

Berlin, Germany: Brandenburger Gate.


7. Brandenburg Gate in Berlin, Germany.

If the Berlin Wall still existed, it could be one of the most photographed sights in Europe, but it disappeared in 1989. The Brandenburg Gate in Berlin’s center is a majestic sight with beautiful old administrative buildings around it. (Pieces of the Berlin Wall have been retained here and there if you want to have a look how it used to be).

8. Charles Bridge in Prague, Czech Republic.

The Charles Bridge is located in a central place in the old town of Prague. Probably every visitor will walk across it. The castle on the other side of the river and the center of the old town on the other side should be on every tourist’s itinerary.

9. Edinburgh Castle in Scotland, UK.

Edinburgh is such a lovely city to explore and to photograph that it is surprising that one subject is in everyone’s frame. The Castle on the Castle Hill is difficult to photograph because of its size and location. Tip: in August, the Tattoo event in Edinburgh is remarkable.

10. Atomium statue in Brussels, Belgium.

Usually, it is true that if millions of people think a place or a monument is worth visiting, there is something truly remarkable in there. Well, maybe this is an exception. The Atomium statue in Brussels was constructed for the 1958 World Fair. What’s wrong with taking a selfie in front of Manneken Pis in the city center?

View travel photograph galleries by travel writers here.

Why take a selfie in front of Eiffel Tower? Here are top 10 selfie locations in Europe

2016-06-06

Which travel destination in Europe is the most popular for taking selfies? No, it is not Heathrow or Barcelona airport, nor Big Ben, but Eiffel Tower in Paris. That’s what British tourists ranked the highest when they were asked about their favorite selfie shooting locations in Europe.
Paris, France, Europe, Eiffel tower
Even though France managed to take the top position in the ranking for the most popular selfie location, the most popular countries in top ten are Spain and Italy. Here is the top 10 list for the most popular selfie locations in Europe as voted by British tourists.

Eiffel Tower – Paris, France
Colosseum – Rome, Italy
Tower of Pisa – Italy
Stonehenge – Wiltshire, England
Piazza San Marco – Venice, Italy
Ibiza Old town – Balearic Islands, Spain
Sagrada de Familia – Barcelona, Spain
Las Ramblas – Barcelona, Spain
Brandenburger Gate – Berlin, Germany
Palacio Real – Madrid, Spain

berlin, branderburger gateBrandenburger Gate, Berlin.
The survey was conducted by Vueling Airlines.

Other bits and pieces of information from the survey:

– 46% of tourists say they have taken a selfie at a landmark, and left after that without really exploring the sight.
– 25% travelled to a site just to take a picture they could then post on social media.
– The average British tourist takes 88 photos on a holiday trip.

If the same survey was conducted to an Europe-wide audience, London’s landmarks like the Buckingham Palace, Big Ben and Piccadilly Circus would probably rank high on the selfie list.

What does a selfie in front of the Eiffel Tower prove? I was here, or I remember you my friend even when I am traveling far from home? It is actually an old custom to prove that a traveler has visited a specific place.

Selfies may not be as new and hot thing as many believe. Yes, taking a selfie in front of a mirror or in front of a landmark is extremely popular, but even before cameraphones existed, people used to take selfies. Before digital cameras, selfies were taken with film cameras, but because the development of every photo in the film roll has to paid for, every photo was carefully considered.

Another way to prove to friends and relatives that you had visited a famous landmark was to send a postcard. What a mess it used to be! First, you had to buy postcards, then find a shop that sold stamps, find street addresses of all the people you intended to write to, and finally, find a mailbox where to drop the cards. Today, Instagram, Flickr, Twitter and many other social media services make it so easy to send digital postcards for the whole world to admire.

Selfie survey news discovered via Mirror.

Copenhagen ranked the best city by architecture, design and lifestyle magazine Wallpaper

2016-03-01

Architecture, design, and lifestyle magazine Wallpaper has announced its annual Design Awards for people, places and things that rocked the world in 2015. The capital of Denmark, Copenhagen, continues its winning streak; it was selected as the best city by Wallpaper.
city view from runde taarn, copenhagen
The Wallpaper praises Copenhagen:

The Danish capital is growing increasingly extrovert and adventurous. In Vesterbro, the meatpacking district of Kødbyen is now an art hub; in Nørrebro, gourmet destinations share the same streets as alehouses; and in Christianshavn, Papirøen is a fertile enclave of creativity. Cradling one of Europe’s most distinguished design traditions has been a mixed blessing. The influence of the midcentury greats had previously eclipsed contemporary talent. But the latest wave of creatives, architects and chefs has fuelled a renaissance, and New Nordic is the cuisine and design movement of the moment.

We tend to look at Copenhagen from a traveler’s perspective, and we see different things, places and trends as the Wallpaper. We see a big city that is being developed with people who are moving by foot or by bicycle in mind. A city that wants to be (and feels also) liberal and safe both for residents and visitors. A city that is bustling with life and business without being hectic.

The last time we visited Copenhagen it was autumn, and the weather was grey. It was almost constant drizzle during those three days that we stayed in the city center. No one cared about the weather, and we didn’t care. Street-side cafes and restaurants were full of people. Some of the outdoors places had heaters to keep customers warm. People really enjoy every moment in Copenhagen. It is not about the weather, it is about what you make of it.

In order to get into Danish mood, view our Copenhagen travel photo gallery.

nyhavn, copenhagen

Nyhavn.


restaurant, danske smorrebrod

Restaurant for Danish Sandwiches.


royal library, copenhagen

Royal LIbrary.


charlottenborg passage, copenhagen

A passage in Charlottenborg.


pedestrian area stroget, copenhagen

Pedestrian area Stroget.

Vacation photography contest transforms the best images into GIF animations

2015-08-31

In the northern hemisphere, summer vacations are over for 2015. It is time to find all the photos taken with digital cameras, smartphones and tablets, and create a photo gallery of exciting things that happened during the vacation. While you are doing it, pick up your best vacation shot and submit it to a photo contest.

lofooten, norway trailer

Online travel reservation service Booking.com is running a vacation photography contest until September 1st , 2015. Entries can be submitted via Facebook, Twitter or Instagram by tagging them with #wingityeah.

The maximum size of the image is 5 MB which should allow sending photos taken on a 8 or 12 megapixel camera. The size of the image varies because the amount of information (that the camera encodes in bits) in each frame is different.

The prizes for the best photos are endless admiration of fellow photographers and having your photo transformed into a GIF animation.

View more of the best vacation photo GIF animations here.

Ten Tips for Fabulous Travel Photography

2015-02-23

Before You Travel

1. Consider Your Camera Strategy

Do you invest your money and learning effort in one camera kit, or do you have two, three or even four cameras around that you use in different situations. Both strategies have their advantages. If you want to become a photographer who may sell photos and perhaps exhibit them, only the best gear will do. If you shoot for your own blog, for an upcoming travel book, or for an article you have sold, having multiple cameras (less expensive) can be more flexible approach. My own experience is that it is vital to have a camera always with you, even when you pop in to a shop near the hotel. A compact camera or a smartphone fits into a pocket, but ofcourse, when you plan a shooting trip to the mountains you can pack the whole camera kit with a tripod into a backpack.
camera lens on keyboard

2. Learn the Manual Controls on Your Camera

Learn to adjust shutter speed, aperture and ISO settings on your camera. A good camera lets you capture fine shots in auto mode as well, but sooner or later you will need to know about manual settings. The first time you try to frame something in low light will be a reminder for you to learn the manual settings.

3. View Your Practice Session Photos on a PC and Tablet

Take time and examine the photos you have taken during a practice session. The LCD display on the camera doesn’t tell you the truth, but you have to view the photos on a PC monitor or on a tablet. Is there too much light in the frame, or is it too dark? What about composition? Focus? Didn’t get that blurry background? Tip: when you practice, take several photos of the same subject, but with different settings. This is the fastest way to learn.

photos from book The Gems of Nice and the French Riviera
Photos from the travel guidebook The Gems of Nice and the French Riviera

On the Road

4. Take Time to Compose

You know the golden section rule, right? The frame is divided into nine sections of equal size, and the corners of the central section guide the position of the main subject. Mistakes in composition are difficult or impossible to correct in post processing, so take your time. Try with the zoom and without the zoom. The most annoying problem: the top of the tower of an ancient castle didn’t fit into the frame and now you are already back home. Take your time at the destination.

5. Try New Angles

Stop, think, and be creative. Move around to get a fresh angle to the subject. High or low angle? Can you find something in front of the subject that doesn’t block the view, but gives it depth?

6. After the Sunset

After the sunset pictures have been taken, it is time to shoot night sceneries. Now, you will need your best camera that comes with manual controls – an automatic compact camera or a smartphone won’t do. Set a slow shutter speed and start shooting with the camera on a tripod or on another stand.

7. People Love to Watch Photos of Other People

Photographing people is perhaps the most difficult skill to master in photography, but travel photographers can trust their instincts and the power of moment. If you keep your eyes open, and camera at hand, anything is possible. For a instance, people shopping at a market, working at a café, or walking a dog. If you intend to take a portrait of a person, you should ask permission. In some cultures, it is not advisable to photograph people at all before you know them and can be sure it is alright.

8. Get Up Early

Morning and evening light provides more contrast for images than photos taken in midday. You may also catch colors that are not visible in the midday sun. Depending on where you are traveling, but if it is autumn or winter, you may witness morning dew or evening fog that can look spectacular in photos.

After the Trip

9. Sort the Day’s Catch

If you take a lot of photos, you should browse the day’s catch every day so that you don’t have hundreds of photos waiting to be sorted when you get home. Examining the photos is also a safety measure: if you are supposed to photograph Paris, but missed Eiffel tower’s top floors, you have to return there the next day. Tip: I throw away hopeless images and name the photos that I save while browsing them.

10. Backup Your Photos

Every day, copy all new photos from memory cards to your PC or any other device where you store your pictures. Then, make a backup copy of the copied photos. For this, you need a backup hard disk, like an external USB drive, or a cloud service, like Dropbox or Hubic.

An inspiration and a source for few tips was Andrew Hoyle’s article on Cnet.

Helsinki, Finland a view from sea
Photo from travel guidebook I, Helsinki.

The Best Photos 2014 Taken by a Drone

2015-01-07

Selfies became a new phenomenon in photography in 2014, but so did photos and videos shot by drones. A number of new services, like TravelbyDrone and Dronestagram display fabulous image material submitted by thousands of drone owners. Beautiful sceneries and funny events are on the menu for drone photo viewers.

Dronestagram arranged a competition for the best drone photos of 2014, and an eagle who came to check out a drone won the title.

Bali, eagle, Capungaero
1. Capungaero, Bali.

Annecy, France by drone-cs
3. Drone-cs, Annecy France.

waterfall in Tamul Mexico by Postandfly
Most liked: Postandfly, Tamul waterfall in Mexico.

View the whole winning gallery here.