Australia’s Best Travel Photography Locations
There’s nothing like an inspiring photo to bring on the familiar itch of the travel bug. Get ready to pack your bags because we’ve gone behind the lens with some of Australia’s top photographers to find out the places that trigger some of their best travel photos. We’ve also included the perfect places to stay after you’ve spent the day checking out these awe-inspiring photography locations.
Ben Scott, Stockton Sand Dunes, New South Wales
No stranger to the globe, Ben has travelled practically everywhere to capture snaps for an impressive A-list of clients including Hugo Boss, Vogue Italia, Gingham and Heels, EHPLabs and Sydney’s country pop trio, Victoria Avenue. Despite being one of Australia’s top fashion and award-winning portrait photographers with a well-worn passport, he reveals that his favourite photographic spots to shoot is the Stockton Sand Dunes, just north of Newcastle on the NSW coast.
The sand hills make you feel like you’re in the middle of the desert, says Ben, but turn around and you are reminded you’re actually right next to the ocean. On a clear day, you’ll be amazed by the way bold blues of the ocean perfectly meet the sky. What really sets it apart as a travel photography location is the way the landscape has a wonderful spectrum of light that makes it perfect to shoot from any angle and at any time of day.
Stay at Novotel Newcastle Beach: Make the happening city of Newcastle your base for your travel photography trip. With 88 stylish rooms, Novotel Newcastle Beach is a perfect beach escape in its own right with the added convenience of city cafes and bars on your doorstep, not to mention plenty of local recreational activities including ocean baths, jogging tracks and nature walks. Many of the rooms have a balcony and beach views, or you can enjoy a sundowner on their terrace bar.
Travelling to Sydney?
Cameron Mackie, Royal National Park, New South Wales
Fashion, lifestyle, destination and wedding photographer Cameron Mackie found his passion for photography growing up in South Sydney with its perfect beach landscapes and photography locations, including those found in the Royal National Park, just one hour drive from the city. Travel and photography are a natural fit for Cameron as he finds inspiration in new and natural landscapes and the ways in which they influence the local way of life.
One of Cameron’s favourite photographic spots to shoot is the Royal National Park. While everyone else is busy snapping the overcrowded shores on Bondi Beach, this expansive bushland has its own sandy gems that are rarely crowded. Cameron recommends visiting either at the crack of dawn or dusk when the light is amazing and wildlife is the most likely to make a guest appearance.
Stay at Sydney Executive Garden Apartments: The Royal National Park has many gateways. One of them is the leafy suburb of Engadine, where Sydney Executive Garden Apartments are located. Only five minutes from Engadine train station, the apartments are easy to access from Sydney as well as being close to restaurants and shops, the National Park and the beach. The accommodation has a kitchen, two bedrooms, laundry and even a private hot tub. Entertain the family after a day at the beach with a barbecue in the secluded garden.
Alexandrena Parker, Goulburn River, Shepparton, Victoria
Alexandrena grew up in country Victoria before moving to Melbourne in 2008 to pursue photography at RMIT where she graduated in 2010 specialising in children’s editorial and advertising work. She has since worked with big-name brands such as Bonds, Johnson & Johnson and Nestlé.
Alexandrena draws inspiration from planes of water as she loves the unpredictability of rivers, oceans and lakes, as well as the sheer beauty of vast open areas of water. Being from Shepparton, the countryside is always close to her heart. It’s no surprise then that her favoured travel photography location is none other than the quaint country village where she grew up on the banks of Goulburn River. She describes the thick gumtrees that line the pristine water as the perfect place for catching locals interacting with nature, with an endearing soundtrack of native Australian birds ringing in the air.
Stay at Quest Shepparton: After a day snapping quaint countryside vistas, relax in comfort at these modern apartments in the heart of Shepparton. Pick up an abundance of the town’s local produce and delicious wine to enjoy in the spacious dining and kitchen areas. Free parking, Foxtel and complimentary Wi-Fi are an added convenience for your stay.
Dakota Gordon, Shark Beach and Centennial Park, New South Wales
‘Getting away from familiar surroundings is one of the best ways to clear your head to make room for something new,’ says Dakota Gordon, who is based on the Northern Beaches of Sydney. A self-taught photographer, Dakota has worked with international and local publications, brands, models and creatives all over the globe for the past eight years.
Extensive travel allows her to constantly explore and experience new photography locations, which she believes is what a creative mind needs. She is inspired by everything around her from colour palettes to people, nature to paintings. Some of her favourite travel photography spots are deceptively close to Sydney CBD, although you would never know it when you are relaxing in the natural oases of Shark Beach and Centennial Park.
Stay at 57 Hotel: Located in the trendy suburb of Surry Hills, just 10-minutes away from Centennial Park, the modern rooms of this inner-city hotel include free Wi-Fi and in-room iPads. From the moment you set foot outside you’ll be ensconced in creativity with cafes, design, fashion and music on your doorstep. All guests are treated to complimentary express breakfast comprising of pastries and Nespresso coffee and tea in the lobby, so you can be camera-ready from the get go.
Peter Coulson, Melbourne, Victoria
Known as a modern age master of black-and-white photography, Peter Coulson images are recognisable for their sensual, mysterious and elegant quality combined with a twist of his quirky sense of humour. Born in Melbourne, his day job as a lifestyle photographer for fishing magazines took him to every corner and creek of Australia, before he moved onto editorial work.
A long way away from the fishing past, one of his favourite spots to capture a model’s most striking angle is amidst the concrete jungle of Melbourne’s edgy street and lanes. He says that light is hugely influential in his work. In Australia, the harsh crisp full sunlight characterises his signature shots.
Stay at Pullman Albert Park: This 5-star hotel is the midway point between Melbourne CBD and the equally photogenic St Kilda, with its stunning beach and nostalgic Luna Park. Luxury is the order of the day, with Pullman featherbeds, Co Bigelow toiletries and plush robes. Download all your snaps on the free Wi-Fi, freshen up in your walk-in rain shower and enjoy a tipple at the Atrium Bar & Lounge.