People In Travel Photos: Not A Bad Thing Actually

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Cruise CompeteWhen we visit iconic destinations around the world, some travelers choose to capture images along the way, trying hard not to include fellow travelers and locals.  Others don’t want any photo that does not include them, documenting their appearance at the destinations they visit.  Really picky travelers don’t want anything but the amazing place and use photography tricks and software to remove all but the landmark, scene or event.  Probably not all that surprising, we like to see people in travel photos, the more local the better as well as trucks, boats, cars and other signs of daily life as it unfolds before us.  Taking another look at photos captured during recent travels, here are some of my favorites.

Boston - 222

In Boston on a Fall Foliage sailing of Crystal Cruises we arrived in Lexington just before a Civil War battle reenactment.  The ‘soldier’ in the background, American flag by his side was the intended photo.  Still, 2 year old Rocky, admiring a monument in the area made a nice addition.

A&K Rothenburg - 046On tour in Rothenburg, Germany with Abercrombie & Kent, this couple paused to consider the day.

Valletta Corsica - 094

Jumping off Seabourn Sojourn in Valletta, Corsica these locals out for a walk on a crisp Fall day were delightful to talk with.

Avignon, France - 129Off Viking Hemming in Avignon, France during an early morning walk we saw shop owners getting ready to open their stores for the day.

Bamburg, Germany - 100In Bamberg, Germany with Viking River Cruises, these locals watched as tourists walked the streets, much as they had for the last 20 years, telling me “the chairs have changed but the view is about the same.”

Cabrits, Dominica - 030

In Cabrits, Dominica a hot day means a cool drink from coconuts, fresh from the palms as we saw traveling with Star Clippers.

Cavtat, Croatia - 062

Cavtat, Croatia , seen vial Carnival Cruise Line, is home to some of the most beautiful Summer flowers in the world.  That these fellow tourists wandered into the photo did not bother us at all.

Chichen Itza - 259

The ancient ruins of Chichen Itza, seen sailing with Holland America Line, have views that have been photographed for centuries.  These people were here for the day and we captured the moment.

Cologne - 052

The Kohlner Dom cathedral in Cologne, Germany reaches to the sky, its towering spires marking the city center as a major landmark.  Looking down rather than up, I found this little gang of children.

Half Moon Cay - 17

Half Moon Cay is a wonderful private island in the Bahamas, visited by a number of giant cruise ships.  This tiny boat caught my attention.

Magdalen Islands - 29

Visit Canada’s Magdalen Island late in the season and visitors are apt to see the boats of this tiny fishing village up on blocks, being prepared for the winter.  This fisherman told me he went from one to another doing maintenance, as long as the weather allowed.

Monte Carlo, Monaco - 030

Monte Carlo, Monaco is known as the exotic location where a number of James Bond 007 films were made, their famous casino, the Monaco Grand Prix auto race…and a great place to take photos off the back of our Seabourn cruise ship.

Nuremberg, Germany - 110

Summer in Nuremberg, Germany brings a lively city market that transforms to Christmas markets in cold weather to round out the tourist season.  We saw both on a number of Viking River Cruises and did not hesitate to include this local merchant

Progresso, Mexico - 041

Visiting Progresso Mexico with Princess Cruises we paused at a cafe to drink in the local flavor, one of our favorite things to do when traveling, time permitting.

Regensburg, Germany - 45

On a summer Viking River Cruise, I stopped to rest on the steps of a building overlooking the city center square.  While others tried hard not to get the abundant bicycles in their photo, I asked this gal to wait.

Savona, Italy - 395

In Savona, Italy with Costa Cruises, I walked the streets looking for locals to add a bit of perspective to what I was seeing.  Later, I would have coffee at a cafe with this man who refused to let me order Cafe Americano, considered an abomination of the espresso he loved dearly.

The point of all this is simple:  Cruise vacations take us to amazing places around the world.  I can Google any given destination and find photos of that place with absolutely no ‘distractions’. Those are not the views I want to remember.  When looking back on my travels I want to recall the day I was there, what I did and who I met along the way.  To me those elements, especially people in travel photos, make the destination real and memorable, not just a postcard view, documenting where I went.


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