Travel Photographer of the Year 2018 – The Winners in Pictures

13 December 2018

Italian photographer Stefano Pensotti has been named the overall winner of the Travel Photographer of the Year 2018 awards, with a portfolio of images from across three continents. 

Amateur and professional photographers from 142 countries submitted over 20,000 images, and photographers from 22 countries feature amongst the winners.  All the winning images will be on display at a free outdoor exhibition at London Bridge City between 28 March and 30 April 2019.

The judges said of Stefano’s images: ‘Wonderful moments captured on three continents make Stefano’s images both engaging and insightful in a rich and diverse portfolio…These images give a real sense of being part of each scene rather than simply observational.’

Fourteen-year-old Isabella Smith from the United States won the Young Travel Photographer of the Year award with her series of photographs taken in Chefchaouen in Morocco.

The judges said: ‘Isabella has made four images which sing with colour and provide glimpses of the lives of the people here, even including movement and tranquillity.’

The top prize for Young TPOTY 14 and Under is Daniel Kurian from Australia, with photographs of a tree being felled in India.

‘For a 12 year-old, Daniel’s blossoming ability to tell a story with pictures is remarkable. It’s a skill which many more experienced photographers struggle to get to grips with,’ the judges said.

And 16-year-old Fardin Oyan from Bangladesh took top honours in the Young TPOTY 15-18 age group with a collection of images capturing young children playing.

The judges said: ‘Fardan’s portfolio is remarkable, capturing movement and the sheer joy of children at play in their environment.’

You can see photographs from all the category winners in the gallery below.

By Stefano Pensotti, Italy, Overall Winner of TPOTY 2018
Bagan, Myanmar – Prayer time in one of the little temples in the plain of Bagan: a young girl stops on her way to school.
Canon EOS 5D Mark II, EF24mm, f/1.4L USM lens, f2, 1/40s, ISO 800

By Stefano Pensotti, Italy, Overall Winner of TPOTY 2018
Timbuktu, Mali – In the last light of day the inhabitants of Timbuktu wash their clothes and take a shower in the port of Kabara.
Canon EOS 5D MkII, EF24mm f/1.4L USM lens, f6.3, 1/40s, ISO 400

Isabella Smith, Young Travel Photographer of the Year 2018
Chefchaouen, Morocco – Perfect newly-picked oranges everywhere
Pentax K-S2, 200mm lens, f14, 1/200s, ISO 400

By Daniel Kurian, Australia, Winner Young TPOTY Age 14 and Under
Kollam, Kerala, India – On my summer holidays in India our neighbour’s 30+ year old mango tree was cut down. It was a sad sight to watch as this was a fruit-yielding tree, home to many birds and provided lots of shade on a hot sunny day.
Canon EOS 450D, 75-300mm lens, f5.6, 1/1000s, ISO 400

By Fardin Oyan, Bangladesh, Young TPOTY 15-18
Akua, Sadar, Bangladesh – Watching these kids playing in the rain, I covered my camera with a polythene bag and rushed out into the rain. We danced, laughed and played in the rain.
Nikon D3300, 50mm lens, f/2, 1/500s, ISO 800

By Marinka Masséus, Netherlands, Winner of the Faces, People, Cultures Portfolio, TPOTY 2018
Dar es Salaam, Tanzania – In Tanzania, when you have albinism, you are thought to be evil. There even is a price on the head of children with albinism since killing a person with albinism is considered to bring good luck.
Canon 5D Mk II, 24-70mm lens, f3.2, 1/250s, ISO 100

By Danny Yen Sin Wong, Malaysia, Winner, Best Single Image in a Portfolio, Faces, People, Cultures, TPOTY 2018
Nikon D5, 80- 400mm lens, f6.3, 1/600s, ISO 5000

By Javier Herranz, Casellas, Spain, Winner, Natural World, TPOTY 2018
Parque Natural del Cabo de Gata, Almeria, Spain.
The pita (Agave americana). two hardened Thorns have interlaced with each other to create a very curious composition.
Nikon D810, 105mm lens, f2.8, f16, 1/20s, ISO 200

By Florent Mamelle, France, Winner, Best Single Image in a Natural World Portfolio, TPOTY 2018
Fuego volcano, near Antigua city, Guatemala – This picture of the Fuego volcano was taken from the summit of the Acatenango volcano. At 4000m, the sky was extremely clear and the Milky Way was in the upper left corner.
Nikon D810, 16- 35mm lens, f4, 20s, ISO 3200

By Matjaž Krivic, Slovenia, Winner, Travel Porfolio, TPOTY 2018
Bani, Burkhina Faso – Kids playing on the main minaret of the Grand Mosque in Bani during Eid al-Fitr.
Canon EOS 5D Mk II, 24mm lens, f2.8, 1/8000s, ISO 400
Although Burkina Faso’s population is among the youngest in the world, with almost 50% younger than 12 years, sadly the country also has one of the highest infant mortality rates. The ones who survive the tender and critical infancy are free to play all day and almost everywhere. In Bani I took a photo of Reita and her friends while climbing the minaret of the Grand Mosque.

By Matjaž Krivic, Slovenia, Winner, Travel Porfolio, TPOTY 2018
Thula, Yemen – In Yemen, although the government provides for compulsory, free education for children ages six through 15, a lot of children in remote, rural areas become shepherds at an early age and never learn to read and write.
Canon EOS 5D Mk II, 200mm lens, f3.5, 1/200s, ISO 100

Philip Lee Harvey, UK, Winner, Best Single Image in a Travel Portfolio, TPOTY 2018
Niger River, Mali, West Africa – Sand divers freedive down to the bottom of the Niger river to collect sand for the building industry. It’s an extremely dangerous job from which many don’t return.
Canon 5D Mk II, 24-205mm lens, f6.3, 1/500s, ISO 200

He Jian, China, Winner, Hot/Cold Single Image Category
Gannan, China – The local people who walked on the pilgrimage road were pious and pure.
Nikon D800, f9, 1/640s, ISO 1000

By Simon Morris, UK, Winner, Tranquillity Single Image Category, TPOTY 2018
Havana, Cuba – I was drawn to the lovely faded colours and atmosphere of this once grand old room.
Leica M, 35mm lens, f5.6, 1/60s, ISO 500

By Nicola Young, UK, Winner, Smart Shot Single Image Category, TPOTY 2018
Port Louis, Mauritius – our trip to Mauritius was accompanied by Cyclone Berguitta, causing stress and drama to everyone on the island. We escaped from the stormy beaches to explore the markets of Port Louis, including the fish market.
iPhone 10, f1.8, 1/7s, ISO 100

Featured image by Overall Winner Stefano Pensotti, Italy, Harar, Ethiopia – Walking through the fortified historic town of Harar Jugol, considered the fourth holiest city in Islam, Canon EOS 5D Mark II, EF24mm f/1.4L USM lens, f16, 1/100s, ISO 800