National Geographic’s Top Travel Photos of 2015 Will Make You Want to Indulge Your Wanderlust
As you begin to draft those 2016 New Year’s resolutions, a fitness related goal is probably going to take the number one spot. But we’re guessing a travel related resolution will be following close behind. Maybe you want to make 2016 the year that you take a big trip but you’re not sure where to go. Here’s where National Geographic can help. The publication recently released a collection of the best travel photos of 2015 — and they’re going to make you book a plane ticket immediately.
1. Trollstigen, Norway: Photographer Sean Ensch captured this shot of western Norway’s famously serpentine Trollstigen road. “I was lucky enough to live here for two months during summer and one evening I saw the valley filling with fog,” he says in his 2015 Traveler Photo Contest submission. “So I drove up the road to watch the late summer midnight sun set as the fog swayed through the valley below.” (Photo via Sean Ensch)
2. Skaters on Lake Baikal, Russia: This photo was taken while ice-skating on Lake Baikal in Russia, says Evgeny Dubinchuk, who submitted it to the 2015 Traveler Photo Contest. “Baikal in winter becomes the biggest ice rink in the world, fully covered with small and huge cracks, resembling a spider’s web,” he says. “On the photo, you can see small figures of skaters dragging loaded sledges behind.” (Photo via Evgeny Dubinchuk)
3. Coyote Buttes, Arizona: A hiker makes his way through the Wave, a swirl of striped, fossilized dunes in the Coyote Buttes of Arizona’s far north. The Bureau of Land Management admits only 20 people a day to the Wave, so visitors are left nearly alone in the geological wilderness. (Photo via Stephen Matera)
4. Kota Bharu, Malaysia: Fresh produce and baskets of fish surround a woman at the Siti Khadijah market in Kota Bharu, Malaysia. The city is close to the Thai border. (Photo via Duratul Ain D)
5. River Delta, Iceland: “Volcanic silt creates amazing patterns as glacial waters merge in this river delta in Iceland’s south,” writes 2015 Traveler Photo Contest entrant Aya O. (Photo via Aya O.)
6. Reindeer Herder, Mongolia: Your Shot photo community member Pascal Mannaerts took this picture of a reindeer herder near Lake Khovsgol in northern Mongolia. “Meeting them after several days of horse riding through the taiga and snow at times was unforgettable,” Mannaerts writes. (Photo via Pascal Mannaerts)
7. Torres del Paine National Park, Chile: The Cuernos (Horns) del Paine grab the early morning light in Chile’s wild Torres del Paine National Park. Once the haunt of a few stalwart climbers, the park now draws more than 100,000 visitors a year. (Photo via Gleb Tarro)
8. Cape Town, South Africa: “I took this picture at an amusement park down by the [Victoria and Alfred] Waterfront in Cape Town,” says Philip Grube, who entered the 2015 Traveler Photo Contest. “It was a clear blue sky when I saw these kids crawling, running, and trying to balance themselves in these shiny plastic bubbles in a pool of water. The reflection of the water in combination with the effect of the bubbles under the blue sky looked somehow surreal.” (Photo via Philip Grube)
9. Mount Rainier National Park, Washington: The huge columnar lava structure known as the Devil’s Pipe Organ dwarfs a hiker in Mount Rainier National Park. An active volcano, Mount Rainier has erupted thousands of times during its relatively young life of 500,000 to one million years. (Photo via Tianjia Zhang)
10. Paris, France: The City of Love spreads around the Eiffel Tower, seen here from the Montparnasse Tower. For many, Paris is synonymous with love itself. The city has been home to such timeless pairs as sculptors Auguste Rodin and Camille Claudel and writers Anaïs Nin and Henry Miller. (Photo via Brian Hammonds)
See the full collection of photos on National Geographic’s website.
What’s the best travel photo you’ve ever taken? Tag us in a pic on Instagram @britandco.
Back in January, we introduced you to a feel-good cause to inspire your New Year's resolution: a walking challenge to help raise funds for the amazing cancer fighters at The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. I took part in the challenge with the Brit + Co team and ended up walking 105+ miles in January — it was awesome.
This spring, there's a new challenge on the horizon, The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society's Big Climb. The ask: On May 15, 2021, you can step up to take cancer down by committing to climb 1,311 steps, walking 3.2 miles, or doing 440 chair step-ups at home as part of the Big Climb. If you need some motivation to bring movement back into your daily routine — look no further!
As always, it's free to sign up, but climbers are encouraged to set a fundraising goal to help beat cancer. We'll be organizing another Brit + Co team to step up, and I hope you'll join us too! Keep scrolling for a peek at where I'll be completing the challenge in my Los Angeles neighborhood around the hidden Silver Lake Stairs. Happy climbing!
Never underestimate the power of an accountability buddy! I asked my in-laws, my partner, and a few friends to join me so we can keep each other motivated and accountable in completing the challenge — virtual high-fives all around! Also, my dog Fox is a great climber, too.
An aesthetically pleasing backdrop is a huge motivator for me! I'm fortunate to have all sorts of painted steps around my neighborhood to keep the challenge interesting, but you can also keep cool inside with at-home chair step-ups.
Don't forget to share your progress on social — #BigClimb!
Feel free to break the challenge up if you need to by tackling half the distance in the AM and half at sunset. Here's me 1,311 steps later and ready for a break — but, think I earned this one!