Photography holiday: where to go?

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Chris
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#1
I've been given a free pass to spend 5-6 days away alone to do as I wish (mainly because the wife is off on a cruise in August!), so I figured something photography related would be good.

If prefer to go away in November as I've got a nice gap from weddings then, the budget including spending money is around £1000.

I'm fairly set on Hong Kong as I've always wanted to go. 5 nights with direct flights in mid-November is about £600, so pretty much bang on budget. The original idea was Iceland but I can't help but feel I'd be massively disappointed if I didn't see the northern lights, so would rather do something that will guarantee a load of photography opprtunities.

Before I book I'd love to hear any other suggestions. New York is a definite no as I've already been 10 times, as is anywhere in Norway as we're often there.
 
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john
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#2
If I had the chance, I would go back to the Canary Islands. The light was lovely there, I went a few years ago in mid November.
 

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#3
It depends what interests YOU. I would go to an exotic island somewhere and think Hong Kong looks hideous as does most of NY and other Cities
 
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Alan
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#4
If given complete freedom I'd go to Kazakhstan. I've been three times and the last time I was there I was invited on a fishing trip. We stayed on an island in the Ili river but it was the drive there and back that interested me, the Kazakh countryside is amazing as are the sights to be seen but unfortunately it wasn't a photography trip and we just drove straight there and back :(

I'd love to do that trip again but as a photography trip.
 
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#6
I've been given a free pass to spend 5-6 days away alone to do as I wish (mainly because the wife is off on a cruise in August!), so I figured something photography related would be good.

If prefer to go away in November as I've got a nice gap from weddings then, the budget including spending money is around £1000.

I'm fairly set on Hong Kong as I've always wanted to go. 5 nights with direct flights in mid-November is about £600, so pretty much bang on budget. The original idea was Iceland but I can't help but feel I'd be massively disappointed if I didn't see the northern lights, so would rather do something that will guarantee a load of photography opprtunities.

Before I book I'd love to hear any other suggestions. New York is a definite no as I've already been 10 times, as is anywhere in Norway as we're often there.
How about Andalucía? The peak season would have gone, the weather will still be nice and it's steeped in fantastic Islamic architecture and Spanish culture. You can do Sevilla, Granada, Córdoba, all of which have photographic jewels.
 
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Toni
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#7
How about Andalucía? The peak season would have gone, the weather will still be nice and it's steeped in fantastic Islamic architecture and Spanish culture. You can do Sevilla, Granada, Córdoba, all of which have photographic jewels.
Andalucia was my first thought too, although I'd prefer that in September I think, for the look of the landscapes and warmth.

But since you want somewhere exotic at that time of year I'd choose India: Amritsar, or Kolkata, or possibly fly to Delhi and then travel out to Jaipur and into the countryside.
 
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#8
Iceland would still be it for me - based on images and videos I've seen on some photography related YT channels, not so fussed on northern lights (although that would be cool), some of the landscapes look spectacular. Failing that, I'd go NYC for some street and urban photography as I've never been and I love that kind of photography, but obviously that's a no for you!

Really depends on what you enjoy shooting.
 
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#9
Iceland is having huge problems caused by an influx of tourists. Personally, I'd do the garden route with a tent.
 
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#13
I found Iceland only gets expensive If you like your drink . I spent 4 days there last march and didn't spend any more than I would spend anywhere else .
 
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#14
I'm not sure that Iceland would be doable on £1000 from all I've read.
In 2016 I paid just over half of that for flights, luggage, very decent car, hotels and food - 5 days in total in May.

I wouldn't risk it in November though. Feb-Mar, late July to September is what locals recommended me.
 
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#17
Thailand? Great snaps in the busy markets, scenic outside the city’s and nice islands and beaches in the south. A day on each would be a decent trip I’d say
 
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#19
Tenerife, there is mars/moon like landscape, volcano, lush green forest... Nice towns... Cheap to go cheap to stay just don't go anywhere close to the south east tourist bit and it's amazing.
 
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#21
I could suggest Patagonia or Northern Yunnan or Arunachel Pradesh, but they are all going to be too expensive and probably take 5-6 days travel there and back, so no go. But ... I've always wanted to go to Iceland and you are so close. Hong Kong is just a city, better than Guangzhou but that's not hard to achieve. Iceland has a lot more to offer than just the northern lights.
 
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#22
Just back from Iceland and it's undoubtedly a great location for photography, you get the opportunity to photograph things you'll rarely, if at all, see elsewhere.... It is getting busier though so don't leave it too late! Also I'd say that it's probably not the best place to head to just for the Northern Lights, despite what the brochures say... it seems it's frequently cloudy so the lights don't show as much as some might think.

The Canadian Rockies and Alaska are pretty special, The American Parks... Yellowstone is fantastic with it's mix of wildlife and scenery.

As someone else mentioned above warm weather spots then Madeira is a gorgeous Island and closer to home Jersey has some fantastic coastline and history.

Your own suggestion of Hong Kong is good too, it's quite westernised now but still has a different vibe, make sure to visit Macau whilst there.. interesting place too

Simon
 
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Paul
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#24
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#28
Morocco or Russia... I’ve never been to either but they’re both on my photography bucket lists. I need to go when my kids are older and I don’t feel guilty going without them.

Have you considered Northern Scotland? I know it’s not exotic or far away but I’d give my right arm to get five days up the West Coast from Applecross upwards on my own with just a camera and a laptop - it’s truly beautiful
 
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ukaskew
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#29
Thanks all, been reading with interest and kept my options open but eventually went full circle. It was actually one of the early posts that inspired me to look deeper into Hong Kong (the one that said it looked hideous!) and I quickly realised that the vast majority of Hong Kong is nothing like you'd think.

As an introduction to Asia (I've never been) it appears to be pretty practical for a somewhat shy/anxious type who will be travelling alone. 80% of the things on my to do list are in the countryside, loads of interesting islands, villages and trails easily accessible via public transport and staggeringly cheap to get around. I often combine photography with trail running and it looks like a complete dream for exactly that. Then in the evening I can scratch my big city itch and do lots of long exposure stuff etc.

I'm heading out at the end of November, nice hotel and BA A380 flights for £600.
 
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Gary
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#30
HK is awesome - I have been there a few times for work in the past and by the time I went on my last trip (several years ago now), I had gotten into photography and was lucky enough to have some free time to get out with the camera - Places possibly worth a look:

Lantau - home of the Big Buddha and an amazing cable car ride
The Peak - as touristy as you can get, but has to be done
The harbour light show every evening
Man Mo temple
Central - full of the hustle and bustle and great for street stuff
Chi Lin Nunnery - an amazing area of buildings and gardens in the middle of a load of high rise towers

That's a short list and so much more to see - will think of more if I can. It's a really great place to wander around and the public transport is excellent - I am very envious and would love to go back.

A few older photos from there if that's OK ? (can remove if you prefer...)

Shade
by Gary Smith, on Flickr

Central
by Gary Smith, on Flickr

Lantau
by Gary Smith, on Flickr

Star Ferry
by Gary Smith, on Flickr

Taxi
by Gary Smith, on Flickr
 
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#31
A friend and I are going to Malta for a photography holiday .... as well as just getting away somewhere relatively cheaply, all booked up for May.
I have been before, but it was 17 years ago so I am sure it has changed a fair bit since then....
For a budget holiday it seems pretty good... for four days, for the two of us;
Flights £220
Apartment £163
 
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#32
Thanks @GaryS70, lovely photos and some good tips. I have an afternoon and 5 full days so planning to cover as much ground as possible. I want to spend day times exploring a little further afield on the various islands, found a few interesting hikes that look pretty accessible via public transport and islands like Lantau appear to easily have a full days worth of stuff to see/do.
 
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Raymond
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#34
Used to live there, grew up there, been back many times.

However, Hong Kong and Iceland offer 2 completely different kind of photography. If you are into landscapes, vast vistas then pick Hong Kong…I am kidding. Iceland of course.

If you like Street photography, the details, the lights, the colours, the vibrance and see a culture that is different to our our (well, yours technically) then go to Hong Kong.

Personally I find Japan infinitely more interesting, mostly because i am not from there. I am going to Hong Kong this year though, October time for 4 nights, before going to Taiwan for a wedding. Should be fun.

You can probably do Hong Kong for £1,000 if you don't mind staying in something somewhere a bit on the cheap side.

Where i am staying at this time is £130 per night, (location in Hong Kong isn't that important as long as you are south of Sha Tin. MTR can get you where you need to go in 30mins.) It's call the Cordis, actually an insane price for the hotel (and where it is adjacent to).















 
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Jamesev
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#36
HK is awesome - I have been there a few times for work in the past and by the time I went on my last trip (several years ago now), I had gotten into photography and was lucky enough to have some free time to get out with the camera - Places possibly worth a look:

Lantau - home of the Big Buddha and an amazing cable car ride
The Peak - as touristy as you can get, but has to be done
The harbour light show every evening
Man Mo temple
Central - full of the hustle and bustle and great for street stuff
Chi Lin Nunnery - an amazing area of buildings and gardens in the middle of a load of high rise towers

That's a short list and so much more to see - will think of more if I can. It's a really great place to wander around and the public transport is excellent - I am very envious and would love to go back.

A few older photos from there if that's OK ? (can remove if you prefer...)

Shade
by Gary Smith, on Flickr

Central
by Gary Smith, on Flickr

Lantau
by Gary Smith, on Flickr

Star Ferry
by Gary Smith, on Flickr

Taxi
by Gary Smith, on Flickr
Yup definitely wouldn't say that looks hideous photographically wise. When is the best time to go?
 
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Simon
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#38
I'm with ancient_mariner in suggesting Kolkata and November is the perfect time to go as it's not too hot or humid. I've been there 15 times over the years and have never got tired of taking pictures. It's often possible to get Emirates flights for around £450. Be warned though, if you're of a nervous disposition, Kolkata isn't the easiest introduction to India!

Kolkata taxis
by Spritch on Talk Photography
 
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#39
You've 5-6 days, that's not long. Do you really want to spend a day of your holiday each way travelling? What about closer based on flight times so you get more time at the destination?
 
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#40
You've 5-6 days, that's not long. Do you really want to spend a day of your holiday each way travelling? What about closer based on flight times so you get more time at the destination?
Depends, if it’s somwhwre he’s always wanted to go and now he can afford it and has the opportunity....just go. Life’s too short.

5days is perfect for a first visit in Hong Kong, it’s not a very big place, you can cover quite a lot of grounds there in that time.
 
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