Every year there are countless photography competitions, but a select few get world renowned recognition. These photos are some of the most amazing, magical, and downright astounding photos of wildlife, nature, and the world around us that you will ever see.
We’ve selected the 26 top photos from the last few years of the CBRE Urban Photographer of the Year, Velux Lovers of Light Photography Competition, Royal Horticultural Society Photographic Competition, Astronomy Photographer of the Year put on by The Royal Observatory Greenwich, and the National Geographic Traveler Photo Contest and we’re positive that you’ll be stunning by how amazing some of these images are!
26. “The Storm” by Aytül Akbaş
Captured in Kocaeli, Turkey just as a storm comes in. The crashing waves and wall of mist towering over the edge of this small stage creates an interesting visual against the storm filtered sky. The photographer, Aytül Akbaş, caught this image of her nephew climbing the steps just as a gust of wind tries to tear away his colorful umbrella.
25. “Magic Mountain” by David Clapp
Photographer David Clapp traveled to Iceland to photograph the stunning auroras. Luckily they didn’t disappoint! He decided to visit the Snaefellsnes peninsula because of its spectacular scenery; what he ended up with was so much more. Around 2am, the intensity of the aurora suddenly changed and a great burst pulsed across the sky to create this astounding formation of light.
24. “An Exhibition” by Manuel Paz-Castanal
This photo, captured in Santiago de Compostela, Spain, showcases the opening of a photography expo at the Casa do Cabildo exhibition hall. The uniform symmetry of the exterior of the building is at odds with the ornate stonework decorating the surface and the towering stone statue that stands sentinel before it. The exposition attendees perfectly framed in each red trimmed window adds life and breaks up the straight lines posed by the building.
23. “Guiding Light to the Stars” by Mark Gee
This photo of the Milky Way was captured, in all its brilliance, over Cape Palliser on the North Island of New Zealand. The photographer, Mark Gee, achieved this panoramic shot by stitching together 20 individual images. The bright light to the right of the image is the Cape Palliser Lighthouse. The large cluster of light in the center of the image marks the bulge of stars at the heart of our galaxy, over 26,000 light years away. The sunrise was only a few hours away in this image, giving the edge of the horizon a faint pinkish glow.
22. “Underground, Egypt” by Nader Saadallah
This photo of a metal casting workshop owner in his workshop gives us a peek into a different lifestyle. The black soot on his face and clothes is thanks to the the metal he smelts and casts. Temperatures in his workshop, located in Egypt, regularly reach 60°C (140°F) while the temperatures inside the furnace reaches well over 1000°C (1832°F).