Travel cameras are meant to be easily accessible, mobile, and able to capture vivid images on the fly, storing memories of once in a lifetime excursions. People looking for cameras that are adaptable to particular environments prefer a camera with simple mechanics for cold weather and those that are less cumbersome for hot weather.
As a result choosing the best camera for travel can be intimidating. To simplify things manufacturers have tried to create a camera that fits specific circumstances and models that are all purpose travel tools. What follows are reviews of the best travel cameras on the market for travelers who want to bring the world home with them.
The two most accessible options are the smartphone and the simple budget compact travel camera. These are both common, affordable, and you can count on having then on hand at a moment's notice. If you are on a hike or in a busy market, these cameras will be easy to reach.
With the budget compact camera, you have a zoom lens that is superior to a smartphone camera and one that works in low light. However, most of us already have smartphones and even though they have a limited zoom range and image quality it's better to save the money and stick with your phone.
Here are some of the best travel camera brands that represent the top models available with all the essential features.
The Canon Company has been making digital cameras since 1984, and they have made many advances in the industry. Their most popular model series are The RC, the PowerShot and Digital IXUS series each of which would be perfect on the road. Then there is their EOS series of DSLR cameras, which represent the high-end side of their products.
Panasonic's brand of digital cameras includes point-and-shoot models and high-end professional level DSLRs. Under the name LUMIX Panasonic produces popular travel cameras. These include the DMC-TZ (Travel Zoom) point-and-shoot compact cameras with zoom and image stabilization. Then there is the Panasonic LUMIX GX8 mirrorless interchangeable-lens camera with a digital rangefinder.
Nikon has made a cautious reputation for their mirrorless interchangeable-lens cameras such as the Nikon 1 S1and Nikon 1 J5 which are both top of the line and easy to carry. They also make DSLR cameras with special sensors and many manual controls based on classic analog features. But today Nikon has managed to dominate the point-and-shoot market with travel camera models.
Top 5 Travel Cameras
Avid travelers often use cameras that fit their general needs and that are rugged and light.
The following cameras fit this description perfectly, with some being more useful than others.
Each one is economic in terms of luggage space, and when it comes to performance each produces clear images in memorable hues.
1. Nikon D3300 24.2 MP CMOS Digital SLR
For its price and the power it packs this camera is tough, the best camera for travel photography, and ideal for a traveler who wants to record everything. It delivers life like images easily in the hands of an amateur and has all the features a professional could want. As the best digital camera for travel, it can fit a variety of lenses including high-powered zoom lenses, but when not affixed with a lens it is easy to carry and light. Along with delivering professional grade 24.2-MP photos and HD video, this Nikon travel camera features smart phone connectivity and an optional WU-1a wireless adapter letting you share images almost instantly.
2. Canon EOS 80D DSLR Camera
This model is easy to use with a solid body, plenty of control options, and a weather seal which is why it is considered by some to be the best DSLR camera for travel. The AF (auto-focus) performance and Image quality are passible but the other features make it an excellent travel camera. The 80D features the best raw dynamic range of the APS-C Canon cameras.
3. Canon EOS Rebel T6 Digital SLR Camera
This canon travel camera features a DIGIC 4+ high-performance image processor with 18.0 megapixel CMOS (APS-C) image sensor. It's made for shooting in bright light to low light and features internal Wi-Fi and NFC connectivity for sharing images on social media. It has a 9 point AF system and AI Servo AF which is excellent for catching a fleeting moment in a vivid setting. The optical viewfinder provides quick and precise focusing and stability.
4. Panasonic LUMIX GX85 4K Mirrorless
This camera has a 5-axis in-body sensor stabilizer. As a result it has optically stabilized lenses along with in-video and still capture modes. You can shoot faster and lighter with the performance of a mirrorless camera and almost half the weight burden of a DSLR. It features thumbwheel controls, an integrated viewfinder, and touch control. You can shoot fast with 4K imaging performance and 4K video performance as well as the Post Focus feature.
5. Panasonic Lumix DMC-SZ3 16.1 MP Compact Digital Camera
The slim body of this camera makes it the best small camera for travel and its zoom feature produces higher quality images than you might expect from a point-and-shoot. The camera features effects and setting that gives you control over the look of images on the fly, and the ability to shoot HD video. The camera comes with an iA (Intelligent Auto) mode and several easy to use presets for shooting in a shaded area, a bright setting, or when tracking movement.
It also features a 25mm ultra wide-angle lens that provide double the shooting area making it the best compact camera for travel on the market.