Pathfinders: top Instagrams from June 2018

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The dramatic vistas and red-hued landscapes of Chile’s San Pedro de Atacama © Michele Roux

From mountain peaks to world-famous canals, our Pathfinders were ‘gramming hard last month, expertly capturing the beauty and character of the countless destinations they visited. Vibrantly colourful, creatively framed and skilfully caught – here are the Instagrams that turned our heads in June.

Venice, Italy

‘This city is always a favourite of mine to photograph because there is always so much to see. I love to find different perspectives when photographing, even in the most obvious of locations – the Ponte dei Sospiri is just around the corner of the famous Piazza San Marco. Tourists and locals were running around behind me, even crashing into my back, but I managed to capture this little scene of tranquillity through the gaps of the bridge.’ – Dario, @dario.dimaggio

Why we like it: For a city of such worldwide fame, you’d think there couldn’t possibly be any angles, shots or perspectives of Venice left uncaptured. Somehow though, Dario’s clever use of the bridge he was standing on to frame his image results in a fresh look at this most renowned of travel destinations. Plus, achieving this razor-sharp focus and soft foreground combo requires some serious photography skills – we’re impressed.

Java, Indonesia

‘The day I took this image we had risen at 1:30 a.m. and hiked for 2.5 hours, our headlamps lighting the way, to the summit of Penanjakan to watch the sun rising over Mount Bromo, Java. The sunrise was spectacular, and once the sun was up, the views were no less amazing. I could have stayed there for hours, contemplating the sea of clouds, which looked like a real sea crashing against the cliffs.’ – Carmen, @world_citizen_64

Why we like it: Carmen’s image is truly spectacular, with the rugged peaks of the mountain semi-ensconced in rolling cloud. The sunlight shining in from the top left-hand corner of the image illuminates the patchwork of fields and buildings perched atop the mountain, whilst the shadowy meeting of cloud and land creates the perfect central focus, running directly through the middle of the frame.

Kaikoura, New Zealand

A post shared by Paul Healy (@anywhere_we_roam) on

‘I desperately needed some relief from my extreme seasickness while on a boat trip in Kaikoura, when this show-off put on a display for us and his mates!’ – Paul, @anywhere_we_roam

Why we like it: Anyone who has ever tried to photograph dolphins frolicking in the wild knows how difficult it is to capture that hallowed leap out of the water – Paul has managed it with incredible flair and admirable clarity, all whilst battling seasickness in Kaikoura‘s choppy waters!

Lofoten, Norway

‘This was taken on the first night of our trip to Lofoten. We waited until dark, and then started driving to hunt for the Northern Lights. This was the first view we caught of them, so we immediately rushed to the beach to grab a great shot as they lit up the sky.’ – Michael, @michaelpetrick91

Why we like it: We defy anyone to tire of looking at the Northern Lights, and Michael’s shot showcases that familiar electric green rippling across the sky perfectly. The expertly defined outline of the mountain in the bottom right-hand corner of the image and foreground boulders running along the bottom contrast wonderfully with the swirling colours of the dramatic sky. This is a real masterclass in capturing natural beauty at its most majestic.

San Pedro de Atacama, Chile

A post shared by MICHELE ROUX (@michele_roux) on

‘I took this photo from the top of the Cerro Toco at 5600 metres, waiting for the sunset. The Atacama Desert is the driest desert in the world, and one of the best places to witness endless, extensive skies. It’s an amazing place to explore many landscapes; lakes, mountains and volcanoes.’ – Michele, @michele_roux

Why we like it: From the mottled oranges, pinks and greys of the sky to the rusty red hues of the desert’s rocky landscape, every element of this picture seems to have been created from one harmonic colour palette. The lone figure standing in the foreground draws the viewer’s attention to the distant, beautiful horizon, and focuses the eye to take it all in.

Follow @lonelyplanet for more Instagram inspiration.

Unpacked – Lonely Planet’s travel blog