Travel Photography of the Year 2016 winners

23 December 2016

Competitions

From fiery lava flows to a magical, snow-swirled New York street scene that echoes an impressionist painting and from the imperious gaze of an elusive, endangered Iberian lynx to wonderfully minimalist images of West Kirby, England, the winning images in the 2016 international Travel Photographer of the Year awards (TPOTY) have been revealed, and they are stunning.

Photographers from 20 countries have won awards, and the winning images will go on show at TPOTY exhibitions at the UK City of Culture celebrations in Hull from 18 May to 30 June 2017 and at 10 Stockwell Street, Greenwich at the University of Greenwich, London from 4 August to 3 September 2017.

Joel Santos becomes the first-ever Portuguese overall winner in the award’s 14-year history, beating photographers from 123 countries to take the title of Travel Photographer of the Year 2016. His winning entry features a delicate and intimate portfolio depicting traditional fishing in Ghana and – in another first for TPOTY – an aerial portfolio captured using a drone, giving a bird’s eye view of one of the hottest places in the world, Ethiopia's Danakil Depression. 

The Young Travel Photographer of the Year 2016 is 14-year old Darpan Basak from India, 18-year old Courtney Moore (USA) won Young TPOTY 15-18 and Ankit Kumar (India) won Young TPOTY 14 and Under.

In the portfolio categories, former overall TPOTY winner Craig Easton won ‘Land, Sea, Sky’, with two German photographers – Sandra Bartocha and Stephan Fürnrohr – each being awarded ‘Best Single Image’ in the category. China’s Ruiyuan Chen took first place in ‘Mankind’, with Jeremy Woodhouse (UK) winning the award for Best Single Image, and Beniamino Pisati (Italy) won ‘Journeys & Adventures’, with Lluís Salvadó (Spain) winning Best Single Image. 

In the single image categories, ‘Shaped by Light’ was won by Chinese photographer Biran Zhao, Michele Palazzo (Italy) won ‘Cities – Architecture & Spaces’ and Luke Massey (UK) won ‘Wildlife & Nature’. Briton Alison Cahill came first in the New Talent award, and fellow Brit Rufus Blackwell won the HD video category Travel Shorts. Finally, Italy’s Marina Spironetti took first prize in Smart Shot, the category for images taken on a mobile phone or tablet.

Travel Photographer of the Year is judged by an international panel of judges that includes Deputy Editor in Chief, Fotomagazin, Germany, Manfred Zollner, champion jockey turned travel photographer Richard Dunwoody and Jerry Tavin (co-president of Glasshouse Images and founder of Young Photographers’ Alliance). Awards and prizes

In addition to the significant international exposure that comes with winning TPOTY, Joel Santos receives £4,000, a selection of StaaG luxury leather travel goods and sterling silver accessories (worth over £1250), £500 to spend on the Páramo clothing of his choice, and a Plastic Sandwich personalized leather portfolio case. For their success in Journeys & Adventures; Land, Sea, Sky, and Mankind, Beniamino Pisati, Craig Easton and Ruiyuan Chen each receive a Fujifilm X-Series camera and lens of their choice. The winner of the Best Single Image award in each portfolio category receives a giclée fine art print from Genesis Imaging.

Biran Zhao, Luke Massey and Michele Palazzo, the winners of Shaped by Light; Wildlife & Nature, and Cities - Architecture and Spaces will each enjoy a five or six day winter or summer voyage for two people along Norway’s stunning coastline with Hurtigruten, and receive a Torres Insulator Jacket from Páramo. Alison Cahill receives a set of luxury leather travel goods from StaaG, a personalized leather portfolio case from Plastic Sandwich, Photo Iconic tuition and a Páramo Halcon Traveller jacket for winning New Talent, while Marina Spironetti and Rufus Blackwell each win £500, a Páramo Halcon Traveller jacket and a Plastic Sandwich portfolio case, for winning ‘Smart Shot’ and the HD Video category respectively.

Young TPOTY winner Darpan Basak receives £500, Photo Iconic photography tuition and a Plastic Sandwich leather portfolio case. Each Young TPOTY age group winner receives £250 plus Photo Iconic photography tuition. The awarded photographers in Young TPOTY also receive destination guides from SNAPP Guides, as do certain awarded photographers in a number of other categories.

To see all the winning images across all categories, visit the 2016 Winners’ Gallery at www.tpoty.com.

Image: © J. Santos / Travel Photographer of the Year 2016.