39 Photos Of Your Amazing Summer Vacations

Summer vacation. It's the best time of year (aside from, maybe, winter vacation, a random vacation, or a 3-day weekend). And for this week's Shooting Challenge, you shared your summer vacations with us.

Winner: Dream Beach


My "summer" vacations are in November - it is too hot to go to Mexico in summer. So this photo is from my last "summer" vacation, last November, in Cabo San Lucas - I hope it still counts.

I used my new Manfrotto 190XPROB 3 section tripod with a Manfrotto 222 Joystick head.

Canon 50D with Canon 17-40L at 23mm, 10 stop ND Filter (B&H), and a 60 second exposure with a remote trigger.

This is one of my favorite photos ever, and I proposed to my now wife right in front of this very rock :)


- T. Darko



These four photos were taken during our family vacation to Disney World. We camped out on the 2nd floor of the Train Station at the entrance to the park, specifically so I could shoot the fireworks that evening. We hung out, ate CheezIts and talked to the nice family from Georgia that was right next to us.

Hardware was my old and aging Nikon D200 with the awesome and cheap 35mm f/1.8 lens. Camera was on a tripod, but shutter release was done with a very steady hand, not a cable release. I put the lens in manual focus mode after setting the Castle as the focused part of the image. ISO was locked at 100, the f stop was set at 6.3, and exposure time was about 6 seconds per picture.


I essentially shot non-stop through the fireworks show, trying to anticipate the interesting fireworks and not shooting during pauses in the show. I stitched these four shots together in Photoshop, since one shot isn't really enough to capture a 10 minute long fireworks display. The actual panorama when not sized down for the contest is over 10K pixels wide.

Hopefully everyone enjoys the pictures!

-Alan Smith



This picture is from the top of "Løvstakken", one of the seven mountains surrounding Bergen, Norway. Elevation is around 1600 ft. Taken august 8th.

Equip: Nikon D700, Nikon 24-70 f/2.8, Hoya Circular Polarizer, Settings:, 26mm, f/ 8.0, 1/125 sec, ISO250


-Andreas Akslen



I used my HTC ONE (M7).

I woke up that morning and it was overcast. As I sat enjoying the morning air, i decided to take a photo.


I took this photo from the 9th floor of my room (CourtYard by Marriott) balcony in Carolina Beach, North Carolina.

We (the family) had a great time.

-Anthony Christopher

Room with a View


This is a photo of my girlfriend Melissa and I enjoying some ACDC's at the Hard Rock Hotel and Resort in Punta Cana, Dominican Republic. We decided to use our second day there to simply relax on

a couple beach chairs, enjoy the view and kick a couple drinks back for most of the day. As relaxing as this sounded, I thought it'd be the perfect opportunity to get the vacation pic we'd want to make everyone jealous back in NYC haha.


To get this shot I used a Canon 7D along with a Sigma 15mm lens as well as a Canon 580 EXII speedlite with a Gary Fong diffuser, all of which are on a Benro tripod.

In my left hand (which you obviously can't see) I have a Yongnuo flash trigger to take the shot for us as opposed to using the timer. In post production I bumped up the vibrance, touched up the sharpening as well lens correction to kill the fisheye effect.


ISO 100 f/14 1/200sec

-Aquiles Torres



Taming ambient light while getting the foreground illuminated successfully is the key to this photo. The infinite flash sync capabilities of this camera, plus having the composition opportunity, enabled this shot. The ambient light was too bright for even the average pro camera to achieve this blurred background (and) use the flash. Being able to use the internal strobe at 1/2000+ illuminates the beer can, while allowing a wide-open aperture, which achieves the blurred background (of my wife and the distant Antiparos Island).

Location: Aegean Sea between Paros and Antiparos, Greece. July 27, 2014. Family vacation aboard the private charter "Michael Zeppos", a 10-meter, 26-year old, wooden fishing boat (sloop) converted for island touring.


Photo Details

Fujifilm X100 (23mm lens) 1/2000 sec f/2.0 ISO 200, neutral density filter and flash at –2/3 stop.


-Blair Sanford

Kalaloch Beach


This was taken with a Canon 7D with a Tamron 17-50mm f/2.8 XR Di II lens shot at f/9.0, 1/160 second, ISO 100.

This was taken at Kalaloch Beach on the Washington coast this July. These are my kids and I just asked to start walking in front of me, swear I didn't make them or pay them to hold hands. No idea if this is what you're looking for but thought it'd be fun to enter.


-Brett Dodd



Photo taken with an iPhone 4s, ISO 50, f/2.4, 4.28mm.

I was on a beach in Longboat Key, FL and this heron was on its own overlooking the Gulf of Mexico. Photo was captured just as the bird was about to take off. I got close with my iPhone and got a great shot from about 4 feet away. No filters.


- Brooks Pryor

Short Boots


Summer in the Northern Hemisphere means… winter down here in Brazil. The islands pictured are called "Botinas" (short boots), because when looking from a distance at sea level, they look like boots. The tightly packed and tall wild palm tress growing on the dry parts of the islands make up the "upper part" of the boots, while the naked granite bedrock make up the "lower part". The islands are pollitically located in the municipality of Angra dos Reis and physically in the Ilha Grande Bay (Big Island Bay) that encompasses 365 islands, one for every day of the year! Although the climate here is tropical and humid year long, during winter time there is less solar radiation and less rain, meaning reduced discharge from the rivers surrounding the bay. This translates into less nutrients and light for the photosynthesizing phytoplankton, benefitting water transparency. One might wonder why is the water clear, but has a green hue to it? Well, it happens that the whole bay is surrounded by tall mountains with dense tropical rainforest growing on them that may receive up to 10 feet of rain yearly on some spots (this is Amazon Rainforest level). All these nutrients eventually flow into the bay, nourishing the micro algae that, together with the reflection of the forest, gives the water it's emerald color. Actually, another name for the region is "Costa Verde" (Green Coast) and some call it the Emerald Waters. While the region gets packed with tourists from December to March (Southern Hemisphere summertime), many locals and long time loyal "customers" of the Emerald Waters strongly believe winter is prime time. Especially those that come for the beauty rather than the parties. I'm sure the family on that lone sailboat knows that they can enjoy their vacation in paradise all for themselves this time of the year. In Brazil, beach vacation weather is yearlong: perfect place for having 365 islands!

Photographer: Bruno Boni de Oliveira. Canon 1Dx. Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8 II USM @38mm + Hoya Circular Polarizer. Heli Shot. 1/640 f/8 ISO2000. Small amount of cropping for straightening purpose


-Bruno Boni de Oliveira

Olympic National Forest


Went backpacking with two buddies into the Olympic National Forest (WA) over the fourth of July to some hot springs. Normally they are reachable through a two mile hike and are really crowded, but for some reason that trail was closed so we took a longer route, about 16 miles, and had the hot springs all to ourselves. We didn't make it in one day and ended up camping on the mountain pass that night. At 4:30am the next morning I was woken up to hear grunts and snorting outside of the tent. First I though, "oh shit a bear", then saw it was white and thought, "oh shit a polar bear". It was too early so excuse my lack of reason. Only after waking my friend up did I realize it was a mountain goat so naturally I grabbed my camera and started shooting pictures. In this shot he had just stopped eating my piss for the salts and decided to stand majestically. You can see my piss in the bottom left corner! Gear: Canon 60D 24-105mm f/4. Settings: 1/60s iso400 f/4 24mm

-Caden Robinson

Urban Boating


Canon 5dii, 35L, f/4, ISO 100, 1/2500

-Caitlin Tam

Black Tie Beach


This is a photo of me (Chris Andrews) taken by my wife, Courtney Andrews. The fun of the photo is really about the subject matter and not the photo itself, but for scientific purposes, she used a Canon SX230 in a waterproof case on automatic mode.

We had attended a local event "First Class Subway and Black Tie Beach" by BostonSOS yesterday at Revere Beach, Massachusetts (just outside Boston). Below I linked a write-up of the event by Boston Magazine, but basically we flashmobbed into a subway car and pretended to be butlers and such giving the other riders a "first class" experience. Then we went to the beach in full formal attire and went for a swim.


-Chris Andrews

Maui Turtle


While vacationing on Maui this summer, I was pleased to get to swim for over a mile with this giant turtle. This shot was pure luck. I kept free diving and swimming next to it snapping as many photos as possible, almost blindly. By far my favorite picture of the entire trip.

Samsung Galaxy s4 active in a cheap waterproof bag from the ABC store.

-Chris Martinich



I only got away for my sisters wedding. This is about the only summer-y picture I took. White wine chillin on a hot day.

Nikon D700. 35mm lens. 1/2000. f 3.2.

- Chris Riggleman



So I took this photo on my trip to Astoria, Oregon with my Zeiss 24-70mm F2.8 attached to my Sony A99 which was at 1/80 F10.

I thought this picture was cool because of the insane contrast in colors where the ocean hit the rock. Also how could you not enjoy the mountains in the background. I took this picture from an old look out tower on the jetty. I also saw a wicked giant tarantula on the rocks while I was out there but I didn't get a good picture of him.. Or her. You know what I mean. Maybe next time.


-Dan Jarvis

Olympic Pool


Taken at Lake Crescent Olympic National Park in Washington. August 7th 2014 Using a Sony NEX-5R.

-David Halleen

Kauai Island


This shot was taken in Kauai's Hindu Monastery on Kauai Island, Hawaii. I've used a Nikon D7100 with a 10.5mm Nikon Fisheye lens at f/2.8, 1/60 sec, ISO 360. Minor ajustments and cropping using Lightroom and Photoshop.

- Frederic Beaulieu



I was really fortunate to take a family trip to France this summer. In Paris, my dad and I originally set out to take pictures of the Pont de Alexander III during the blue hour, but when we got there, the view looking westward from the bridge captured my attention. Late June is a fantastic time to be in Paris, and the sun sets around 10pm. Tripod or not, it turned out to be a technically difficult long-exposure shot because there's so much vibration from the cars and buses driving by. I ended up getting sharper pictures during the blue hour, but I liked the colors of this one. Sony NEX-6, Sony Zeiss 24mm 1.8 lens at f11 / 24mm (36 equivalent) / 5 sec / ISO 100. Gorillapod. Cheap wireless remote shutter release. Cropped and sharpened a bit in PS elements.

-Garrett M. Chinn

Hillsboro Beach


Sunrises at Florida beaches are spectacular so I woke up earlier than anybody and took this shot while vacationing in Hillsboro Beach.

Sony alpha a58, 18-55mm SAM II lens @ 18mm, ISO 100, f/4, SP-AE, 1/100.

-Henry Vidal

Chair's Time Off


Just a little backstory: This was taken just before the "hurricane" that clipped New York and Connecticut rolled in on July 3rd. The greyness of the water and the sky with the empty chairs felt like the antithesis of a beach photo, and the sky/ocean/beach combo made it look like the photo was naturally cut up into three pieces (a la rule of thirds). Shot on an iPhone 5s and lightly edited with Snapseed and VSCO Cam. Resized and sharpened in Photoshop.

-Jack Kelly

Step Into the Void


Photo taken with a Sony RX100, f6.3, ISO 125, 1/800s - straight out of the camera, no retouching or editing whatsoever.

This was taken from the top of Aiguille du Midi in Chamonix, France - my girlfriend and I were in Geneva for her brother's wedding and we had both seen Kelsey's Gizmodo post about Aiguille du Midi and Step Into The Void this past December, so we made sure to rent a car and cross it off our bucket list! Awe-inspiring.


-Jim Brody

Memorial Union


For this shot I used the panorama mode on my iPhone 5s and I edited the picture with snapseed. The shot is taken from one of the many docks at the Memorial Union Terrace at the University of Wisconsin-Madison in Madison, WI of the sunset on August 9th. I was lucky enough to frame the shot with the sailboat, featured in the photo, passing right in front of the sun, taking down some of the brightness to allow for more depth and contrast in the water and the buildings on shore.

- Jared Paul



For the July 4th long weekend we went to Banff to experience the beauty of the Canadian Rockies. One day we did a 14+ mile hike along Lake Minnewanka that was 5 miles along the lake then just over 2 miles climbing 1700' to an old fire lookout. We started early enough that we were first to the peak and enjoyed the amazing views of the lake and surrounding mountains. Returned to the parking lot 7.5 hours after starting to find it packed with tourists waiting to go on a lake cruise and had the most satisfying bottle of Gatorade and Oreo ice cream sandwich ever.

Shot with Sony A57 18-250mm lens @28mm, f8 1/100s

- Jeremy L



I took a summer vacation to Cleveland (I know, I know, but there are actually a lot of cool things there!). One of the MUST SEE sights in the area is the actual house where they filmed "A Christmas Story"... yes the one where Ralphie lived and right there in the window shone the warm glow of electric sex… the Major Award that the Old Man won! It was a bit of Christmas in July!

This was photographed on the Fourth of July and is a blend of 5 images into one HDR composite. Exposures were at ISO 400, F10 and ranged up to a 30 second shutter speed. I used the Olympus OMD-EM1 body with a Panasonic 7-14mm lens.


I'll bet you weren't expecting to get any Christmas-themed photos on a summer vacation contest!

-John Clark

Jones Beach Air Show


This picture was taken over Memorial Day weekend (the unofficial start of summer). The Blue Angels were in town for the Jones Beach Air Show. They take off and land at Republic Airport, and I went to capture it with my Panasonic DMC-ZS9.

They come in low, and there are power lines right near the airport. I like the way this image shows how low to the ground they are right before they come in. The image was globally corrected for brightness, contrast and color in Paint.net 4.03.


-Jonas Demuro



Took this with a cannon T4i this summer in Newport RI. ISO 100 1/640 sec 55mm F - 5.6. Kit lens

-Jonathan Dana



Walking along the canals of Bruges is by far one of the most beautiful things anyone can do. This photo was taken on a perfect August evening right in the heart of the city. Strolling along the winding streets can fill entire evenings. Vacations do not always need to include beaches, sometimes they are best with a nice ice cream cone on a medieval street.

Sony A7R, Sony 10-18mm lens, Developed in LR 5, Taken in Bruges Belgium August 8th 2014


-Joshua Young

Puerto Rico


I went to Puerto Rico with my friend and ended up staying at his brothers house. Off the coast of Puerto Rico there is an island called "Icacos" which is pretty barren. The locals take their boats out here just to hang out, relax and have a few drinks. The Island and scenery is beautiful, it seems like the only think that could look better is heaven.

Shot on a Sony a65 with a rokinon 8mm f/3.5 lens, hand held, 1/2000th, iso 100, in manual mode.


-Kafel B

Muir Woods


Taken with a GoPro in the Muir Woods near San Francisco. My summer vacation consisted of the city and surrounding areas, and Muir Woods was one of my favorites. The redwood trees tower up to the sky, and get very mystical when the fog rolls in. Minor edits done in Lightroom.

- Logan Nickels

Santa Monica State Beach


After a dinner of fresh seafood and red wine, we arrived at the pier as the sun set. Pictured is a Northwesterly view of the Santa Monica State Beach from somewhere on the pier. Shot handheld with a D7100 w/ a 50mm/1.8 @ ___ISO 100__F/7.1__1/320__ and stitched together from multiple frames, this piece required some perspective correction and work with the transform tool in Photoshop to achieve this final result. As the image was shot from right to left, some of the flying gulls make repeat appearances, there were really only three or four total.

-Matthew Hamilton

Cadillac Mountain


My son Maxim Diachenko took this picture on his Apple iPhone 4s.

Cadillac Mountain in Maine. July 25, 2014 - 5:13am

-Joe Diachenko



Bournemouth, England

Nikon d3200 - new to me.

Solo vacation to the town on the southern coast.

First night shoot experiments of fairground on the coast.

- Mike Dobbins

Cedar Point


Here is an image I took this week at Cedar Point in Ohio. This is by far my kids favorite place to go in the summer. This shot was taken with my iPhone 5s from the top of the Giant Wheel. The HDR effect was added in Snapseed on my phone.

- Mike Guildoo

Land of the Rising Sun


Sony NEX-5R on intelligent Auto mode. E-mount lens 18-55mm F3.5-5.6 OSS. July 14, 2014 at 16:06:57 PM. I used the balance of the cloud formation on the right with the sun on the left to capture the beautiful sun rise in "The Land of the Rising Sun" from the summit of Mount Fuji in Japan (after climbing the mountain all night).

-Nathan Last



Memorial Day fireworks Dorney Park in Allentown, PA.

Canon T5i, 18-55mm STM Lens

f/10, 25 sec exposure, ISO-100

-Nick Pepi

Cathedral Ledge


Last Wednesday I was on vacation, me and the fiancé took our daughter hiking up at Cathedral Ledge in North Conway NH. This is one of my favorite shots of our daughter scrambling around the rocks you can tell by the horizon in the background that I shot it slightly off axis and the spot she is climbing was actually pretty steep considering she's only 2 years old. She's been hiking with us since she was only a month old and with school and work we don't spend much time as a family so it was a really fun night.

Shot RAW with my Nikon D5000 no post editing done. ISO-800, f/6.3, 1/13 sec exposure, 0 step exposure bias, 24mm focal length


- Paul LeBlanc



My cousin came from Quito-Ecuador to stay with me for 2 months, and he found it so easy to take the subway, that he visited practically all NY by himself. He then asked me, to go with him to Long Island, because he found a nice park; he insisted so much that I went with him; I live in NY for more than 20 years, and I never been in this park. I found it so beautiful; the view of NY, that I went back and took my mother with me, because she's been living in NY for more than 30 years, and she never knew about this park either. She's 66 years old and she deserves this small piece of vacation in the city that we love so much.

Equipment: Galaxy S5 (Samsung-SM-G900A). Settings: Flash OFF, Aperture 2.27, ISO 40, Focal Length 4.8mm, Exposure Time 1/1072. Technique: HDR


- Paul Velastegui

Florida Keys


Jumping of the boat bow in the Florida keys.

- Priscilla Torrez



This picture was taken this past July, 2014. We were on vacation in Jacksonville, FL. My wife and I decided to watch the sunrise over the beach. It was perfect timing. There was very few people on the beach, and then I saw this guy jogging and saw the reflection of the sun off the water. The unadulterated sand made a perfect canvas for the sun's reflection.

I am by no means a pro photographer. They say the best camera is the one you have with you. I took this photo with my Samsung Galaxy S5, default settings. No enhancements other than the auto-enhancements done by Google Photos.


-Rich Herrera

South Dakota


I took a short vacation to South Dakota during the new moon phase in July so I could get some photos of the Milky Way. I took this photo at the Badlands. A car was passing through so I quickly released my shutter so the headlights could light up the foreground.

Canon 5d Mark III, tamron 10-24mm. Focal point 14mm. Exposure 41 sec. F-Stop 4. ISO 3200


- Robert Lundskow

Outer Banks


My family (both my side and my wife's side) went to the Outer Banks for a week on vacation this summer. We were living in two house just a block or so apart. It could have been a very stressful vacation for my wife and I, but it was actually quite lovely to have everyone together.

Every morning, I would set an alarm and go to the beach around 5:30 to take pictures and portraits with the sunrise. My mother met me out there with a cup of coffee and we chatted while I took pictures. She raised me to love the beach and, having recently moved across the country, I cherished the time together.


I took this shot my first morning out. It is an HDR composite of several photos.

Canon 6D with Rokinon 14mm (which I love). f/5.6. ISO 100. Various Shutter Speeds (five shots about a stop and a half apart). Tripod


- Rob Huber



I took this photo in Siena, Italy. This was taken with a Canon 7D. I was walking with a group of my friends, when I saw this narrow alley completely empty - not something common in such a popular tourist city. I snapped a few pictures quickly and then returned to my group. Later on, I did some editing in LightRoom, and I was quite pleased with the end result.

- Sam Kramer



My boyfriend and I went to the New York Aquarium at Night event this past Friday. I couldn't decide between the firework shots or this colorful picture of an outdoor tank, which the DJ was conveniently positioned next to so you could do a little jig next to your fishy friends. I used my little Cannon T3i that I haul around everywhere with me with a higher ISO setting. (I don't remember what it was exactly- I was changing it constantly.) Anyway, hope you enjoy!

-Sarah Blevins

Prince Rupert


This photo was taken on June 7th on a (blue) iPhone 5C. I somehow managed to time the panoramic shot perfectly so as to not be disturbed by the waves. It was taken on a whale/grizzly bear tour off the coast of Prince Rupert, B.C. The lighthouse in the photo is no longer inhabited by an attended, although it was used for many years in the past.

- Thomas McGoey



Canon 6D 24mm f/5.6 1/400 ISO 160

Shot during our last sunset walk on the beach in Destin, Florida.

- Tim Bottchen

Familiar View


I've been spending my summer vacation at Cedar Rapids Lodge, a small resort in northern Minnesota, for 26 years. This little patch of woods between the cabins and the lake was always one of my favorite places to play as a kid, and even as an adult I have to pause take it in each summer. Looking west through the trees, you can see the third boat dock with sun setting just out of frame. Vacation doesn't get any better. Shot with iPhone 5S.

-Tim Piper

Hudson River


I lived in the Hudson Valley all my life up until only a few months ago when I moved to Charlotte, NC. My summer vacation included visiting family for a few weeks. Because I am so very Irish I burn a little too easily at the beach, so I like hiking instead. We hiked Breakneck Ridge, which gives us a beautiful view of the Hudson River. We even went all the way to the fire tower, from which you can actually see the Manhattan skyline. Anyway, the first rock clearing has a flagpole on it, and from there I took almost 40 RAW images to make a panorama of the river. stitching it all together leaves us with a 133 Megapixel image at full resolution. It took a while to make (and save!) but boy was it worth it.

- Tyler Sheehy

Yes, those of us who didn't get out of town this summer are insanely jealous. Seriously, seething with rage. You are our enemies. Don't let us see you on the street. It won't end well. The big shots are on flickr, though!


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