For over 20 years, the Travel Photographer of the Year (TPOTY) has been awarding the best work of amateur and professional photographers from around the world. People from more than 150 countries submitted more than 20,000 images in TPOTY 2023 and the winners have finally been revealed.
From lyrically beautiful images of European agricultural landscapes to heartbreaking aerial shots of elephants searching for food on rubbish dumps, and from intriguing portraits of shamans performing rituals on a frozen Siberian lake to an inspirational portfolio showing athletes still competing in their 80s and 90s and photographs capturing the friendship between a rescued pangolin and her carer, the winning images in the 2023 international Travel Photographer of the Year awards illustrate the highs and lows of life on this planet, captured through the lenses of enormously talented photographers of all ages from around the globe.
For the second year in a row, a Slovenian photographer has taken the overall honours. The Travel Photographer of the Year 2023, AndreJa Ravnak, follows in the footsteps of her fellow countryman Matjaz Krivic, who took the title in 2022, depicting hop growing in Slovenia and rolling fields in Italy and Czechia. Among others, her prize includes a £1,000 (€1,170) cash bursary from TPOTY.
“There is a subtle elegance about this year’s winners”, said TPOTY founder Chris Coe. “This comes through in both of AndreJa’s winning portfolios; one takes us into simple landscapes, with delicate colours and a textural beauty, the other into the hop fields, out of season and undressed ready for the next planting. Neither are obvious subjects, neither photographed at an optimal time of year, and yet they are both engaging and rather beautiful.”
The winner in one category was not chosen by the judges. The People’s Choice award was decided by members of the public voting on the TPOTY website – and this year the winner is aged just 15. The winning image, by Rohan Neel Shah (Kenya), shows a bewildered lone wildebeest in the middle of the frenzy that is the Great Migration in the Maasai Mara.
This year TPOTY welcomed MPB, the largest global platform to buy, sell and trade used photography and videography kit, to the sponsor line-up for the first time. The three MPB One Shot categories challenged photographers to capture each category theme (A Quieter Life, Above, Eye Level, Below and Leisure & Adventure) in just a single image. MPB also supported the HD video category, World in Motion, which was won by British photographer and filmmaker Matthew Williams-Ellis for Karibu Nyumbani, a short film highlighting the beauty and depleted wildlife populations of the Mara North Conservancy, in Kenya.
Lastly, in this year’s awards, three of the finalists will receive an unusual opportunity to have their work reviewed by a top New York photographers’ agent, Frank Meo from The PhotoCloser. The selected photographers are Caden Shepard Choi (USA), F Dilek Yurdakul (Turkey) and Jack Lawson (UK).
The full portfolios of the winners, as well as runners-up can be viewed on TPOTY, but below is a glimpse of the best travel photographs of 2023.