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Travel Photography Tip #2: Choose The Right Camera

The 2nd chapter in our series focusing on getting the best out of your travel photography. 

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Choose the Right Camera 

Travel photos can be wonderful reminders of the amazing trip you took or can be horrible reminders of your photography failures. Don’t let the pictures be bad memories, instead follow my ongoing tips on travel photos and be the expert we all know you can be.

This tip is an important one; chose the right camera to fit your travel wants and needs. Cameras are so high tech nowadays that anyone can take amazing photos with little to no training or they can be nightmares.

Who wants an out of focus picture?

Who wants to carry all these lenses and extra batteries around? 

Where did I leave my camera charger?

Can this camera get wet? 

Do I go old school and use film or should I stay in this century and go digital?

So many questions and I’m here to answer them all.

First, let’s talk about what you want your camera to do. Do you want supremely detailed portraits of locals? Do you want basic landscape pictures to show your family your travels? Do you want a camera to take snorkeling and mountain climbing with? Ok, I can help. There are three main types of cameras I’ll discuss: Point and Shoot, DSLR and Underwater.

 

Point and Shoot:

Also known as CDC or Compact Digital Cameras, these wonderful little modern marvels are usually less than $450 USD and extremely durable. These are your basic digital cameras that you and many of your friends use. These are your best option if you’re worried about price, portability, and weight. They are small, cheap and travel easily. You won’t need a separate camera bag, extra batteries or annoying film canisters. Current point and shoot cameras take fantastic photos and are affordable, so they are a great choice for backpackers and light travelers.

All photos are stored on memory cards that are tiny in actual size, so their portability ratings are very high.

 

DSLR

DSLR stands for Digital Single Lens Reflex, which to the layman basically means they have a mirror that reflects the camera’s image for finer details. DSLR will give you better depth of field and has many more lens options. These higher-end cameras are better for shooting sports wildlife and portraits. The larger lens creates more details but is much more fragile. I recommend a separate camera bag for =your DSLR and all its lens, batteries and accessories.

These cameras range anywhere from $500 USD for the baseline models all the way up to $10,000 USD. The pictures taken by these are fantastic and super high definition. I recommend these style cameras if you want to take your photography a little more seriously and want to invest more money. These cameras can be money pits since there are so many accessories and optional things to purchase.

 

Action Camera

These class cameras are your waterproof and shockproof phenomenon. GoPro is the industry standard and has really exploded on the photography scene. The whole market was basically just created recently and the technology has begun to rapidly improve. These cameras, along with the appropriate cases can turn these into indestructible beasts. With added attachments, they can be secured to surfboards, helmets, and extenders to really get the most out of them. GoPros have recently become very affordable with the base package starting around $250. They shoot in fisheye lens standard but with adjustments, they can shoot in regular aspects.

I recommend these bad boys for any adventure travelers or backpackers since they can shoot movies or stills with the simple push of a button.

Hopefully, these tips help you choose which camera type is perfect for you.

Happy photo taking and memory capturing.

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Destinations

Visit the Quieter Side of the Caribbean

 Let’s get away from the crowds and find a vacation spot that is just as beautiful and affordable while we visit the quieter side of the Caribbean.

 

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Summer vacation is around the corner and now is the time to start planning your beach trip. If you are thinking Caribbean then you most likely are looking into Cancun, the Dominican Republic and Jamaica, the three most popular destinations. These places are awesome, cheap and beautiful but also the busiest, so maybe a quieter destination ids for you.   Let’s get away from the crowds and find a vacation spot that is just as beautiful and affordable while we visit the quieter side of the Caribbean.

 

Costa Rica

If surf is your goal then Costa Rica is your paradise. Considered the best surfing in the world, with warm waters and consistent breaks all year long, Costa Rica needs to be on your list if you like water activities. Costa Rica straddles both coasts with the Caribbean side being the calmer side with smaller waves and thicker jungles. The Caribbean side is generally cheaper than the Pacific side and much more laid back.

 

Honduras

Honduras isn’t on most people’s lists because the city of San Pedro Sula is currently the murder capital of the world but its well over an hour away from the beaches. This beautiful country sits right on the Caribbean Sea and boasts some of the most beautiful beaches around. Check out Roatan, the largest island off the coast and a major vacation hub. You can fly direct from major US cities like Houston, so no need to worry about the crime riddled central cities.

 

Panama

Nobody thinks of Panama when booking Caribbean vacations but that is their fault. This Central American country boast some of the region’s most secluded private islands and luxurious retreats. Find the above water villas you’ve been searching for with unspoiled marine life just waiting to be explored. Panama has some awesome wildlife and plenty of sanctuaries you can explore and enjoy all that nature has to offer. Panama also has a rich history so you can see some really cool ruins.

 

Trinidad and Tobago

Tourists still under utilize the only actual Caribbean islands on this list, Trinidad and Tobago.   The country isn’t focused on tourism like the other Caribbean nations so they don’t offer as much variety of resorts as the other islands. Trinidad is the business island and Tobago is the pleasure center of the two, so I advise you stay on Tobago. These islands have those authentic laid back vibes you’ve been searching for.

 

Belize

If you want the best snorkeling and scuba diving in the region than look no further than the Barrier reef off the coast of Belize. The largest barrier reef in the Northern Hemisphere is full of marine life and intense coral reefs. Belize also has some radical Mayan ruins you can check out that are located deep in the lush rainforests. There are plenty of guided hikes and activities to keep you entertained and more than enough sandy beaches to relax on. Belize is nestled between Mexico and Guatemala, so it’s easy to get to and affordable.

Try one of these less traveled paths and your vacation will be filled with chill Caribbean vibes.

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Destinations

Best Shows in Las Vegas

Vegas has all the gambling, shopping and eating you could handle and that doesn’t even include the countless shows you could see, but which are the best?

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Las Vegas is the entertainment capital of the world for a reason, there are more things to do here than anywhere else in the world. Vegas has all the gambling, shopping and eating you could handle and that doesn’t even include the countless shows you could see, but which are the best?  While rebranding the city as a family destination, Las Vegas still boils down to what hotel has the best casino, restaurants and shows. I chose my favorite shows for you to see in Vegas and why, so check it out and see some shows next time you are there.

 

All Shook Up

The King is alive in All Shook Up at Planet Hollywood in this awesome tribute show. Travis Allen is the master impersonator who perfectly embodies Elvis Presley in his voice, demeanor and stage presence. If you can handle the annoying screams of women lusting after Allen, then this show is great.

 

Blue Man Group

If you haven’t seen this sensory overload of a show then you need to fix that. The Blue Man Group is the ultimate in Vegas shows because it stimulates all the senses. Now at its new home at the Luxor in a specifically designed theater, just for their unique show, the Blue Boys are back and better than ever. Check out their show and scratch it off your list.

 

The Beatles: Love

The music of the Beatles mixed with the absurdity of a Cirque du Soleil show and you have the formula for an awesome evening. Head on over to The Mirage and checkout “Love” even if you aren’t a Beatles fan. It’s a true Vegas style show with tons of glitz and glamour and all your favorite classics from The Beatles.

  

Absinthe

Cruise on over to Caesars Palace and check out Absinthe, the seductive variety show is half Cirque-du-Soleil acrobatics and half brash comedy show with a dash of burlesque mixed in for sexuality. The show is meant to induce a form of hallucinations indicative of an Absinthe trip.   Seeing this show is like drinking the funky green drink, so be prepared for a crazy time at this adult only show.

 

Penn & Teller

What’s a trip to Vegas without some magic? A boring trip is what. You have to see Penn & teller because it’s an awesome show and you deserve to laugh after you lost all your money at blackjack. The kings of comedy magic will split your sides and make you wonder, “How the heck did they do that?”

 

Purple Reign

No trip to Vegas is complete without hitting the outskirt hotels for some real deals and possibly the best cover band in the world. Purple Reign is the Prince tribute show at the Westgate that will make you believe that Prince is still walking the Earth.

 

O

See Cirque du Soleil in a gigantic pool with acrobatics and synchronized swimming, yep, check that off your bucket list. The Bellagio is home to the famous fountains and O, the most impressive Cirque show to date. This show is so over-the-top that it could only happen in Vegas and at the Bellagio. If you want to see a Cirque show, this is the one to see first. Romantic and beautiful, it will pull at your heartstrings and stimulate your brain.

 

Le Reve

Le Reve is the Wynn’s answer to O, and it may even be better. This show strays away from a story and focuses more on the incredible skill of its performers. You won’t believe what you see in this aquatic master class in acrobatics and performance.

 

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Destinations

New Travel Alert for Europe During The Summer

The US State Department issued another and more widespread travel alert for much of Europe this summer. 

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The US State Department issued another and more widespread travel alert for much of Europe this summer. This comes on the heels of recent travel warnings for Europe, which are a response to increased chatter from terrorist organizations. There have been some major terrorist attacks and activity in Europe and specifically France in the past few years. Summer is the busiest travel season and many European nations count on this yearly boom for their gross national income.

 

Details

The travel alert is issued on May 1, 2017 and runs until September 1, 2017. The US State Department believes that with all the recent terrorism at busy tourist attractions in Europe and increases chatter show signs of impending danger. The extremists are hell-bent on spreading their fear and terror by attacking the western civilization at the heart of their freedom.

 

France

Recent attacks in France have made huge headlines and many people have been affected by these incidents. Paris is an international city with millions of tourists each summer, so a travel warning like this could hurt their bottom line. Will this travel alert make people reconsider their summer travel plans, only time will tell?

The Alert mentions Paris as a possible site where terrorism could occur and that should worry people with plans through that city.

 

Russia

Russia seems to be in continuous turmoil and this summer season is no different. The country has been the target of terrorists in the past and many of those are homegrown threats. If you have plans to visit Russia, I would check with the US embassy just in case.

 

Great Britain

Great Britain has many strong ties to the United States and that makes them and their territories targets of terrorist organizations. London is one of the most visited cities in Europe and now the State Department is warning US citizens about the threat of a terrorist attack in that city this summer.

 

Islamic State and al-Qaida

The two main terrorist groups responsible for all these threats and attacks are the Islamic State (ISIS) and Al-Qaida. They have plenty of operatives already in place all over Europe and these sleeper cells are waiting for the opportunity to strike. The US State Department doesn’t believe that these attacks are imminent but there are strong possibilities.

 

What You Should Do

If you already have travel plans for Europe this summer, it may be too late to change your plans. If this is the case, don’t worry, the odds of being in a terrorist attack are very minimal and just being smart will help you out. If you plan on traveling to the alerted areas, contact the local embassy or consulate and see if there are any new developments. Watch media and see if there are any new warnings.

Look for things that are odd or out of the normal but overall just try and enjoy yourself. Life is too short to let the terrorists win, let’s keep living our free lives and we will always win in the face of adversity.

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