Congratulations to the winners of the 2017 Photo Contest!
This year's photo contest proved that our guests are amazing photographers. The winning photos were selected from thousands of images revealing the natural splendor, cultural sights and spontaneous moments on Backroads trips.
First place is awarded to Sarah Noble from Iceland Multi Adventure Tour.
Photographer's Notes: Some of my fondest memories from growing up are hiking with my family, running up the trails and always taking a picture together on top of each and every mountain we climbed. Over the past few years I have fallen in love again with hiking, particularly because of my family’s foundation Kiss the Sky to find a cure for Type 1 Diabetes, which my sister has had for 26 years. This past summer I had some time off from work and knew that I needed to travel to Iceland, a destination that I had been eyeing for years. I signed up for my first Backroads trip, and had the most incredible experience. This photo is a self-portrait from the top of the Valahnúkur in þórsmörk, an otherworldly landscape in Southern Iceland that is truly heaven on earth. I think about this mountain and this moment often and cannot wait to return with my family in the years to come.
Second place goes to Clive Beavis from Alaska Walking and Hiking Tour.
Photographer's Notes: We always like to do something a little different and adventurous for our vacations. I caught the wildlife photography bug on a safari in Kenya some years ago. 4 weeks before this Backroads trip my trusty camera failed and had to be sent off for repair. Nice excuse to buy a newer model. I am glad I did. As we approached gull island in our boats we spotted the sea otter floating on it's back. As we got closer it took a big yawn and for a split second looked like it was smiling happily. This was my favorite shot of the whole trip. Wildlife photography is a lot about being the right place at the right time and having a little luck.
Third place goes to Tania Pritz from Puglia Bike Tour.
Photographer's Notes: Our trip to Puglia was the trip of a lifetime for my husband and me to celebrate my 50th birthday. We had to delay it because I was diagnosed with breast cancer, so after my recovery we had two things to celebrate! Though we are active, we had never taken a trip that was designed around biking. Traveling from village to village at our own pace truly allowed us to enjoy the journey. We were pedaling through the small town of Gioa del Colle on our way to Alberobello when we spied a street-artist's depiction of cyclists. My husband urged me to jump in and "race" the other riders. It was a spontaneous moment, but one that we look back upon most fondly as it really captures the spirit of our trip. We can't wait to take our next Backroads trip!
Fourth place is awarded to Mary Drazba from Czech Republic to Austria Bike Tour.
Photographer's Notes: To cap off a week of incredible biking, out trip leaders suggested an early morning hike to the castle ruins above Durnstein. The views of the Wachau Valley and the Danube were spectacular from our vantage point atop the hill. As a final farewell, our leaders gave us "some love" to remember them and our wonderful time in the Czech Republic and Austria. This was our first Backroads trip, but it certainly will not be our last!
Fifth place goes to Paul Brewer from Yosemite Multi Adventure Tour.