For a long time, there were only a few publications that helped curious readers get glimpses of the broader world. There was TIME, Life, the National Geographic, and if you were lucky enough to have access to a really good one – the encyclopedia. These magazines and books were filled with striking images of far out places that didn’t just inform and entertain, but inspired people to travel themselves. The internet changed all of that.
Like everything, the rise of social media decentralized travel and adventure photography. Photographers no longer need to go through editors holed up in big office buildings in New York or D.C. to share their photos with the world. All they have to do is hit “post” on their smartphone. As result, the social media platform is filled with amazing photographers of all stripes. You can just as easily follow award-winning and professionally trained photojournalists as you can keep tabs on an independent photographer who shares images taken on the fly during their personal travels. We thought it would be fun to go through and highlight what we think are some of the Best Adventure Instagram accounts out there today. Take a scroll through – you may find some folks you follow already, and some others you’ve never heard of.
Aaron Brimhall is interested in two things; petrol and the backcountry. The photographer has a real interest in both the big wide open quality of nature and the vehicles that can get you there. While in some contexts these subjects are set up as being diametrically opposed, in Aaron’s photography they both exude the same thing – a rebellious and rugged attitude.
One thing a lot of photographers struggle with is capturing the pure scale of the outdoors. Translating that grand feeling is hard. What makes Alex Strohl so great is that he manages to consistently capture the immensity and wonder of the locations he shoots.
Anuar Patjane Floriuk
Winner of the 2016 World Press Photo award for nature photography, Anuar Floriuk is an incredible talent. His images of the world under the water’s surface have a dreamlike quality to them that highlight just how different and wonderful our oceans can be. In addition to all of this, his work is a shining example how alive and vibrant black and white photography can be.
Chris Burkard is one of the few photographers out there who has been able to build a brand and a large audience on Instagram by sharing striking photos from their adventures. His unique combination of surf photography, snaps of climbing, and hiking have garnered well over 2 million followers. Take a quick look at his page and it is easy to see why.
Founder of a nonprofit dedicated to protecting sea life, Cristina turns her lens on life both in and around the ocean. Over her career, she has published 10 books, written numerous journal articles, and received awards for her work as a conservation photographer.
A photographer, director, surfer, and treehouse denizen, Cyrus has a penchant for capturing clear-eyed and invigorating shots of the wilderness. While he calls the Pacific Northwest his home, his travels take him all across the world.
Dave Krugman is a New Yorker with an incredible eye for capturing striking images of Manhattan that manage to somehow feel both foreign and familiar. He applies this same treatment to other subjects while traveling outside of the five boroughs. Whether it be a rainforest, a slushy city street, or one of our National Parks, his images all have a dramatic and refined feel to them.
Named the inaugural Instagram photographer of the year by TIME magazine, David Guttenfelder was among the first professional photojournalists to really embrace the social media platform and phone photography. Since the outset, the one rule for his account has been that he only uses photos taken with his smartphone. As result, followers get a bit of a taste of what doesn’t make it into the frame while he is out on assignment for big publications like National Geographic. A must follow for any photo nerd.
Based out of Bellingham, Washington, Dylan Furst has a hometown advantage when it comes to capturing all that the Pacific Northwest has to offer. Thanks to an account filled with images of deep green woods, snowy glaciers, and icy rivers – you’ll find it hard not to want to book a ticket up to go hiking through the woods of Washington and Oregon.
Some people grow to hate where they grow up – especially if it feels remote and far away from the excitement of a larger city. Hannes Becker only came to love the more remote and wide open parts of the world more as he grew older. Whether navigating the icy waters in the north or climbing Machu Picchu, Hannes has a unique ability to capture nature in its most still and quiet forms.
Jason Charles Hill
An incredibly talented photographer from Brisbane, Australia with the ability to capture stunning shots both of dense cities and the more far-flung parts of the world. His images have a kind of cold, yet colorful and vibrant feel to them that is hard to come across.
Currently working for Getty Images and living in Beijing, Kevin Frayer’s feed is full of striking images of everyday life from one of the most influential countries in the world. His feed has a grainy, high contrast feel to it that comes off as honest and candid when compared with the manicured and hyperreal photography that is so popular today.
Times have changed, but National Geographic is still the best place to find some of the most captivating images. With their account, Nat Geo highlights some of the best photos and videos from their photographers based all around the world.
A lot of photographers on this list have a real talent for presenting nature at its most grand or majestic. Nicole has a different take. Using color film and often using multiple exposures, this photographer – based on the west coast – has a penchant for capturing the forests and deserts of this part of the country at its most ethereal and abstract.
Our Open Road
Back in 2012, Adam and Emily Harteau set out on what they thought would be a year-long trip down to Tierra del Fuego. About 5 months in, they decided they wouldn’t stop there. Now in 2017, the couple and their two kids are still roaming the world in their Volkswagen Westfalia, having the time of their lives and capturing it all flawlessly through photography.
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