Cruise: Photography

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How often have you heard someone say that is almost impossible to get quality photographs while on a cruise, sightseeing with thousands of other tourists? The general consensus of opinion is that when cruising too much time is spent on board the ship and not enough quality time is spent in port and the time spent is not the most optimum time to photograph.

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Even when traveling on land with a photo group, I have encountered days when we traveled all day and only managed to be able to shoot for maybe a half an hour. Even under the most idea circumstances a great deal of time can be spent traveling and positioning for that perfect shot.

While it is true most ships not only arrive in port well after sunrise but leave just as the sun is setting over the western horizon, the best times to photograph, this fact should not discourage you from getting good quality images .While you may not be in port during the times when the lighting would be the best,there are still plenty of opportunities to get excellent photos of the places and people you encounter.

Several ports now offer exclusive photo tours where photography and getting quality images is now the main concern. However ,if this kind of tour is not available, do not despair, there is still hope. The first objective is to  go on a tour that advertises itself as the “best of” where ever it is you are, this always includes some great observation sites to photograph  the best scenics available. Once there, take advantage of whatever ingenious and neglected points of view over looked by the ordinary tourist. Sometimes just walking a short distance from the rest of the group will lend itself to a fantastic and neglected vantage point.

When visiting a relatively safe destination, charter a private van, taking a few like minded people with you. Once people learn that a photo tour lends itself to finding quality spots most visitors never see, you won’t have any problem finding tag alongs to help make your trip safer and more enjoyable. Just keep in mind that going on a nonship sponsored tour means the ship won’t wait on you if you are late, so make double sure you are back in time for the sailing, or you will be getting some nice images of the airport while on you way to your next port of call.

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As most of us, you will be traveling with your wife or significant other who probably could care less about those priceless images you are recording. Their main objective will be to find the unforgettable bargain  that no one else have ever found in  some exotic port. Just tag along and be supportive and appear highly interested, then at the last moment as your lovely wife is about to make the purchase of the century, duck out the door. This is your golden opportunity, go for it!

There are always great photo ops in every port I’ve ever been in , check out the old man sitting on the curb, how about the man sitting in the door way of a store? Maybe there are children playing in the street, or some old building with a unique design or door, maybe an interesting window or church. How about an interesting angle no one has ever seen. The opportunities are endless.
With a little ingenuity and patience those one of a kind images can be yours , it doesn’t matter what the circumstances. As you prepare for that next cruise, pack all your gear and enthusiasm you can get into that
suitcase. You’ll need it all.

Now you can follow me on Kindle.

The author has been a writer/photographer for over thirty years. Specializing in nature and landscape photography, as well as studying native cultures.

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His travels have taken him to most of the United States, as well as Australia, Belize, Egypt and the Canary Islands.

He has studied the Mayan culture of Central America as well as the aborigines of Australia. Photography has given him the opportunity to observe life in various parts of the world.

He has published several books about his adventures.

For more information, please consult his website,

Your comments welcome

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