Our photographer's favorite destinations for photos

Our global photography lead, Alex Oates, knows exactly what makes a place photogenic. Here’s a list of his favorite destinations for photographers – plus some tips to help you get the very best shots. 


The hilly, twisting streets of Lisbon’s Old Town make for a very atmospheric subject or backdrop. Follow them and you’re sure to find one of the city’s many sky-high viewpoints, from which you can glimpse (and photograph) the city, the castle and the river. Also stunning to see from above is the 25 de Abril Bridge, which is reminiscent of San Francisco’s famous Golden Gate Bridge. For something a little edgier, LxFactory is a great place to explore – this up-and-coming district is known for its industrial architecture and street art. 

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Sardinia’s ‘Grand Canyon’, the Gola di Gorropu, is famous for its dramatic landscapes and isn’t to be missed. The surrounding parkland is just as scenic (we think you’ll get the best view from the mountain road). Another must-see destination is the Grotto del Bue Marino – a cave with cerulean waters, unusual stalactites and stalagmites and Neolithic wall carvings, which you can reach by a rocky coastal path or by boat. It’s also worth heading off the beaten track here, as the island’s many unspoilt beaches and lagoons can make for some unique shots. 

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New York

First, the quintessential New York shots. If you’re wanting to get an incredible photograph of the Empire State Building, just go up to the top of the adjacent Rockefeller Centre. To get all of Manhattan Island in the frame, try taking some pictures from the (free) Staten Island Ferry. Next, for something a little different, why not wander the quieter streets of the West Village – there’s much to capture, particularly when the cherry trees are in bloom – or head to Brooklyn with its wealth of historic brownstones.  

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Big Sur

At once striking and graceful, Big Sur’s Bixby Creek Bridge is much visited by photographers for a reason, and certainly worth the trip. Nearby Ragged Point, with its jagged cliffs and vivid waters, is breathtaking, and the best place to get a view of the sea. The area’s also full of secluded and beautiful beaches that are much less photographed – Pfeiffer beach is our favorite. And don’t miss Carmel-by-the-Sea, a picturesque little place slightly to the north of Big Sur that’s known for its quaint houses and pretty scenery. 

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San Francisco

We think the north side of the Golden Gate Bridge is the best place to get an amazing shot –  you’ll have great views of the bridge itself, and the whole bay area too. Another popular haunt for photographers is the Golden Gate Park, a vast green space that’s full of lakes, bridges, trees and flower gardens. In the city itself, the characteristic steep streets are beautiful photographed at sunset. And if you’re really into urban scenes, Haight Ashbury, with its unconventional buildings, shops and people, is the place to seek out.

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Inspired to take your own travel photos in style? View all of our destinations.