Our editors go to great lengths to take photos to accompany their stories, and in 2019 they took over 9,000 images that captured their journeys. Not only are they all accomplished writers, but many of them are great photographers as well. Unfortunately because they travel incognito, we can never give them due credit for their work. As the photo editor, I have collected some of my favorites from the past year to highlight their skills.
The Caribbean has a plethora of great diving and snorkeling opportunities, but I wasn't expecting to see something like this. Our editor had chartered a private sailboat on his trip to Grenada to see a unique underwater sculpture gallery, and this is what he came back with. I couldn’t help but pause when I saw the submerged statues with the twinkling blue fish swimming in the foreground.
Amangiri is widely known as one of the most stunning hotels in the world, and the photos from our editor’s trip there this past spring did not disappoint. Every angle of the property seemed to present a new vista framed by dramatic architecture. This view of the Utah desert from the seating area was breathtaking enough, but the shadows cast by the crimson shades overhead made this an instant favorite. The following image of the blue pool surrounded by the bleached desert is an iconic angle and screams “luxury hideaway.”
Unfortunately seeing a rhino in the wild is becoming rarer every day. Our editor was lucky enough to approach this one on foot and capture a photo with a guide at Mosi-oa-Tunya National Park in Zambia. Even though it is partially obscured, I was immediately drawn to it. The layers of foliage create mystery and a feeling of it emerging from the bush.
On the drive to a Himba village in Namibia, our editor spotted this landscape and asked the guide to stop the car. I'm glad he did. I love the the juxtaposition of this lone tree with the vast desert of Hoanib Valley; it’s a very well-composed image.
The otherworldly landscapes of Namibia are as much of an attraction as the country’s unique desert-adapted wildlife. Here in the Dead Vlei, the shape of this ancient, blackened acacia tree against the bright-orange dunes in the Namib-Naukluft National Park in Namibia is immediately eye catching.
The banks of the Chobe River between Namibia and Botswana teem with life. During a stay aboard the Zambezi Queen, our editor captured this exciting moment of elephants playing in the water, splashing around and spraying water with their trunks.
The Douro Valley in Portugal is known for its pastoral landscapes and great wines. The bright, vivid colors of the Rabelo boat and the surrounding green hills in this photo presented a perfect picture of what I’d imagine it to be.
Rome is one of the world's most beautiful cities, and our editor dutifully photographed major sights such as the Colosseum, the Forum and St. Peter's Basilica. But I was especially taken with this image of the lesser-known Palazzo Altemps. It makes a great use of shadows to highlight the sculptures and the visitor in the central courtyard.
One of the great experiences of travel is encountering moments of mundane daily life that are radically different from our own experiences. This photo of an older woman rowing her skiff on the Mekong River through a floating market in Vietnam is something you don’t see every day. Rather than being in the way, the curtain on the right allowed me to imagine myself in the scene.