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If you’re looking for the best gear to fill your camera bag with for your next adventure, you’ve come to the right place! Our goal with this blog is to give you some insight into our must-haves for the best travel photography.
As full-time travel content creators, bloggers & Instagrammers, having the right gear to get the best shots while still packing light is very important for us. Everything below is the extent of what we use to create our Instagram, Pinterest & blog content!
Here’s what you’re gonna get with this blog:
- Best cameras & accessories for travel, adventure & underwater photography
- Top drones & accessories for travel
- Best camera backpack to travel with
- Must-have accessories for travel photography
- Editing Software & laptop details
- and a breakdown of all our gear!
Disclosure: Some of the links we use in this article are affiliate links, meaning, at no additional cost to you, we will earn compensation if you click on them and make a purchase. Please trust that any recommendation we do make is our own opinion, based on what we like and think could be helpful to you.
Best cameras for travel photography
We are obsessed with our Fujifilm X-T20! It’s what we shoot 90% of our content with and it’s been our best travel companion. Whether you’re full-time travelers or going on a quick trip, a pro-photographer or just starting out, this camera is incredible!
Fujifilm X-T20 details
It’s a mirrorless camera (instead of a DSLR) that is lightweight, durable, easy to learn and, of course, takes incredibly quality photos! It has the capability to shoot great 4K video, too, if you want to take video content.
We use the 18-55mm lens that we bought bundled with the camera and it’s the perfect all-purpose lens.
Another HUGE perk of this camera is that it has Wi-Fi connectivity so you can use the Fujifilm app on your phone as a remote, which was a total game changer for us! Since we shoot a lot of couples shots and don’t travel with a 3rd photographer (other than our tripod), being able to set up the camera, then position ourselves in the frame, set the focus box AND take the shot all from our phone is a total luxury.
This feature saves us from wasting a ton of memory on timer shots and saves a lot of time from running back and forth to the camera. With the app you can also download your photos to your phone right away if you’re shooting in JPG which is great for quick edits and turnaround!
Honestly we shopped around a lot when deciding which camera to get, and especially for its price-point there’s just nothing like it.
>> All of the details on the Fujifilm X-T20 camera are here!
- We highly recommend buying extra batteries and extra memory cards for your camera
- To protect your camera it’s certainly a good idea to get a case – we have this one and it’s been great!
- Don’t forget to protect your screen with screen protectors
GoPro Hero 7 Black
Our GoPro Hero 7 Black is our go-to for wide-angle, action and underwater shots, as well as video! Of course true to the GoPro brand, it’s small, super lightweight and easy to take on any adventure. Proving to be the true definition of ‘small but mighty’, every time we shoot with the GoPro we’re impressed with the quality – especially in their latest version.
>> All of the details on the GoPro Hero 7 black are here!
- We highly recommend buying extra batteries for the GoPro since the battery life is our one concern with this camera
- Be sure to get the correct memory card for your GoPro and enough memory to hold both photos & videos. We recommend 64GB.
- To protect your GoPro it’s a good idea to get screen protectors
In order to get the most out of our GoPro (trust us, it can do A LOT!), we love bringing these accessories along with us.
1) For shots that are half-under and half-above water, this dome is a must! One bonus is that even if you’re not using the dome, you can use the handle as a stick to hold the GoPro. Multi-purpose things are our favorite since space is hard to come by in our luggage!
2) In order to get the most stable video content, we love using a gimbal for our GoPro! It can keep the camera steady even with a lot of movement which makes your video quality a lot better!
We use our iPhones for our Instagram stories, some video content and whenever we just need a quick shot. It’s honestly pretty wild how much you can do with just a phone camera these days and there are great mobile editing apps out there too!
Best drone for travel photography
While you certainly don’t need a drone to get started in travel photography, it can be a great way to get creative and find unique perspectives of places! Here are a couple of the best drones to travel with:
DJI Mavic 2 Pro
We absolutely love our DJI Mavic 2 Pro for capturing aerial shots and video content, as well as allowing us to have a higher angle than a tripod would provide for some shots!
With a 20-megapixel camera and 4K video recording, the Mavic 2 Pro has incredible image and video quality. It also has a transmission range of 8,000 meters so you can fly it pretty dang far! As an added bonus, it’s compact and a perfect size to travel with.
Whether capturing us experiencing the magic of Tuscany, finding unique gems in South Africa or exploring the rock formations in Cappadocia, Delilah our drone (yes, we named her) has been an amazing addition to our camera bag this year!
>> All of the details on the Mavic Pro 2 are here!
- The “Fly more kit” comes with extra batteries, a charging hub, car charger, extra wings, and the perfect size carrying case for the drone, controller and batteries. We really contemplated purchasing this and in the end we are SO happy we did. The extra batteries are an absolute must as each battery only gives you about 30 minutes of flight time.
- PolarPro filters help you get the best quality images and videos from your drone
- Make sure you get the correct memory card
DJI Mavic Air
For a more budget-friendly option, the DJI Mavic Air is certainly a great drone to travel with. Since it’s about half the price of the Mavic 2 Pro and even more compact, it’s a great option to consider.
Here are the biggest differences: the Mavic Air has a 12-megapixel camera in comparison to the Mavic 2 Pro’s 20-megapixel, has a slightly shorter battery life and has about half the transmission range (4,000 meters). However, the Mavic Air is still an amazing drone with the ability to capture incredible shots!
>> All of the details on the DJI Mavic Air are here!
Tips for traveling with a drone:
Since each country has different rules and you don’t want to risk your equipment being confiscated at the airport, be sure to look up drone laws in the countries where you’re traveling. You may also need to apply for a drone license to use it in some places.
Also, make sure to research if you are allowed to fly in certain parts of the country. Certain places like UNESCO sites and key points of architecture tend to be off limits, so it’s always good to verify.
Best camera backpack
Thank goodness everything listed above (except our GoPro gimbal & dome) fits perfectly inside our PolarPro Backpack, because we couldn’t carry all of this gear without a super organized system!
It has compartments with velcro so you can configure it how you want, a padded place for laptops and a spot to attach a tripod! The backpack also opens up while laying flat which is great to see and access all of your gear. It even has nifty side pockets for anything you need immediately accessible, places for a re-useable water bottle and a sneaky top pocket to securely keep your passport. Seriously, we don’t know how we functioned before this bag.
>> All of the details on the PolarPro Backpack are here!
Best travel photography tripod
Since we’re a travel couple and don’t travel with a third photographer, one of the questions we’re asked most is “how do you take photos of the two of you??” Well the answer is our handy dandy tripod!
Because this Bonfoto tripod has been our personal photographer through all of our travels, we honestly can’t go anywhere without it!. It’s super easy to fold up and carry, folds out to a great height and feels very sturdy holding our Fujifilm X-T20.
>> All of the details on the Bonfoto tripod are here!
Before we had our camera and wanted to take non-selfie shots of the two of us on a phone, we used this tripod! It has a great phone attachment, comes with a Bluetooth remote for your phone and folds up super tiny. We would not, however, recommend using this one for your camera.
Travel photography accessories
There are a few accessories besides the ones that are mentioned with each item that we can’t travel without.
- Universal travel adapter – so far this one adapter has worked for us in over 40 countries. This is a must-have in our book since we can’t risk not being able to charge our gear wherever we are. We travel with two of them actually!
- External hard drive – it’s super important to frequently back up your content! Especially if you shoot in raw, your local hard drive will fill up really fast. We tried not traveling with this and just relying on cloud storage but with varying quality of Wi-Fi, the external hard drive is a must for us.
- Waterproof dry bag – whenever we get in a boat or near water and can’t risk our gear getting wet, we put it all in a 15L dry bag!
Travel photography editing
Editing is a crucial part of travel photography! We use our MacBook Pro laptops for all of our blogging and most of our photo editing. Our favorite editing software is Adobe Lightroom which has both a desktop version and a free mobile app you can use to edit on the go!
So there you have it, the full breakdown of what fills our camera bag. We certainly hope some of these items can help you take your best travel pics and capture the best memories!
Kylie & Scott
(Want to know more? Comment below! And make sure to follow along on Instagram @LoveHardTravelOften)
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