I don’t know about you but Instagram is one of my favorite social media platforms. I love the amazing photography that’s shared across it every day. But with hundreds of millions of monthly users on the platform, how do you search through it all to find the best? There are so many good accounts out there but here are the top 10 travel Instagram accounts I recommend you follow in 2016:
#ReflectionCanyon is one of the unique wonders in the #Southwest. Located in a remote section of #GlenCanyon National Recreation Area in #Utah, Reflection Canyon offers unparalleled views of the #ColoradoRiver twisting and winding through colorful sandstone cliffs. After the tough hike to reach Reflection Canyon, photographer Wan Shi was rewarded with this spectacular shot. “This has to be the most colorful and surreal scene I have ever seen in American Southwest.” Photo by Wan Shi (www.sharetheexperience.org).
1. US Department of the Interior (usinterior) Believe it or not, the US Department of the Interior is doing a fantastic job of not only protecting America’s great outdoors but promoting it, too! They have over 800,000 followers on Instagram and post amazing photographs one to four times a day. One of my favorites (pictured here) is of a remote section of Glen Canyon National Recreation Area in Utah, and taken by photographer Wan Shi. I hope I get to see it one day with my own eyes!
Sunrise Sessions A photo posted by Pete Halvorsen (@petehalvorsen) on
2. Pete Halvorsen (petehalvorsen)
Pete Halvorsen travels the world as a content producer for both non-profit organizations and five-star luxury brands. In 2014, he was named one of the top travel photographers on Instagram by Business Insider. Pete’s a great guy (we live in the same town) and you can tell he has a love for life, humanity and sharing stories, all of which come through in the images he creates. If you aren’t following him on Instagram, you should be.
3. Garry Norris (garry_norris) Garry Norris is a traveler based in Queensland, Australia who’s developed quite a following (about 125K) on Instagram. The reason is simple: He takes amazing photos of destinations all around the world. This guy will give you some serious wanderlust.
Woke up at 4AM, left the beautiful @vidadowntown hotel and caught the sunrise in the desert of Dubaï with @nathparis & @superchinois801 ☀️ #visitdubai @visitdubai.fr #vivadowntown A photo posted by Mary Quincy (@mary_quincy) on
4. Mary Quincy (mary_quincy)
I met Mary Quincy last year while on a Viking River cruise along the Douro Valley in Portugal. I quickly realized that Mary is a very talented photographer and a rising star on Instagram. She has over 65,000 followers who dream about the places she captures in her amazing photos. The majority of the photos are of Paris, where she lives, but she’s starting to travel more and more. Be sure to follow her to satisfy your wanderlust.
5. Lee Abbamonte (leeabbamonte)
Lee Abbamonte is famous for being the youngest American to visit every country in the world! You’d think that after visiting every country in the world the guy would slow down, but as you can see from his Instagram feed, he’s traveling now more than ever. Lee was slow to get on Instagram (I think I actually helped nudge him), but he’s taken it by storm, posting multiple photos a day when he’s traveling and posting photos of the places he’s visited while he’s home.
A Vision from the Alps. Photography can be job and a business, which is great to because you can ultimately do what you love for a living. But I’ve never looked at it that way. I needed a way to remember things because I was never a good writer, I’ve never done journals or taken notes. All I do is take pictures of my experiences and, at the end of the day, at the end of my career, of my life, I’m not going to give a crap about how much money photography made for me; I’m going to care about the ability to share a lot of these experiences with my kids. A way of remembering (hopefully) a life well-lived. – from an interview I did with @peatheadq A photo posted by ChrisBurkard (@chrisburkard) on
6. Chris Burkard (chrisburkard) Chris Burkard is a self-taught photographer and artist based in Central Coast California. His work is layered by surf, outdoor, lifestyle, and travel subjects. He has a whopping 1.3 million followers but when you see his images, punctuated by energized landscapes and moments of bliss, you’ll know why. He’s continuously searching for wild, remote destinations and off-beat landscapes. Chris is only 29 and he’s already established himself as a known name in the surf and outdoor industries.
Night in Bora Bora with bungalows over the turquoise sea… #borabora #night #stars #milkyway A photo posted by Trey Ratcliff (@treyratcliff) on
7. Trey Ratcliff (treyratcliff)
Trey Ratcliff is best known for creating one of the top travel photography blogs on the internet, StuckInCustoms.com. It teaches users HDR (High Dynamic Range), in which Trey specializes. His photos are so incredible that he has the honor of having the first HDR photo ever to hang in the Smithsonian. His photos have tracked over a hundred billion views on Google and he’s now getting popular on Instagram. Trey grew up in the US but now lives with his family in New Zealand and probably travels more than I do leading photo walks.
#followmeto Varanasi, India with @natalyosmann. My favorite one so far :). A photo posted by Murad Osmann (@muradosmann) on
8. Murad Osmann (muradosmann) Arguably some of the most beautiful pictures you’ll find on Instagram are from Russian photographer Murad Osmann’s account: muradosmann. He and his then-girlfriend/now-wife, Natalia Zakharova, have been exploring the world. As written in The Daily Mail, he claims that his beautiful #followmeto images were inspired by Natalia’s impatience, as she was constantly trying to lead him as he stopped to take pictures. Now, Murad has over three million followers on the popular photo sharing app, and recently his work has led to a book deal, advertising contracts and a number of magazine articles.
Hillside houses in Port-au-Prince, Haiti A photo posted by Gary Arndt (@everythingeverywhere) on
9. Gary Arndt (@everythingeverywhere)
Gary Arndt sold his company and his house back in 2007 to travel the world for a year. He loved it so much that he still hasn’t stopped! He’s now been to over 100 countries and all seven continents. Along the way, he’s learned how to take really good photos—and I mean really good, as last year he was named SATW’s (Society of American Travel Writers) Travel Photographer of the Year for 2014. He has over 60,000 followers on Instagram and every photo he posts was taken by him. If you’re looking for inspiration or just beautiful photos, then follow Gary.
One last look at the stunning architecture in Lisbon. You have to look up, down and all around to really appreciate it all. Tomorrow: Porto! #VikingSocial A photo posted by Natalie DiScala, Toronto ✈️ LA (@nataliediscala) on
10. Natalie DiScala (nataliediscala) Last but not least and yes, I’m biased, but even if I weren’t I’d still be recommending my beautiful wife (nataliediscala). First of all, the woman not only travels a ton—she has elite status on three different airlines—but she also knows how to do it well (carry-on only) and in style. More importantly she has an eye for photography and knows how to create Instagram photos with the best of them. In fact, she’s been regrammed by Martha Stewart, Target and Beautiful Hotels—just to name a few. Natalie was a digital editor for Style at Home magazine for 15 years and writes her personal blog, Oh! Travelissima. Since we got married in 2012 (here’s our crazy wedding day) she splits her time among Toronto, Los Angeles and the world. I’ve been fortunate to travel to 60+ countries with this amazing woman and I consider myself the luckiest man in the world to have her as my wife and travel companion.
Should I watch Monday Night Football or go surfing? #Waikiki #Hawaii #SPGAmex #SPG #SPGLife A photo posted by Johnny Jet | Los Angeles (@johnnyjet) on
Oh and if you want one more don’t forget to follow little ol’ me…you can find me at johnnyjet.
Who else would you add to the list? Leave a comment with your favorite travel Instagram account handle!
Since you asked, I’d like to think mine is pretty good :) @everybodyhatesatourist I’m in New Zealand at the moment, heading to Hong Kong next