Choosing the best travel camera for your journey can be a daunting task, especially with so many camera options available on the market. But don’t worry, in this post we will help you find the best travel camera for your needs.
There are several types of travel cameras available (Point-and-Shoot, High-End Compact Cameras, Mirrorless, DSLR) and each has its benefits. Point & Shoots are the most portable and least expensive, but they also capture lower quality images. High-end cameras are similar to point-and-shoots, but capture high quality images. Mirrorless cameras are best for travel as they offer the compactness of a point-and-shoot but the image sensor of a DSLR. DSLR’s are the heaviest option out of all of them, but they also capture professional quality images.
In the end it really comes down to what type of traveler you are and what features (size, image quality, price, etc.) are important to you. We, for example, are lightweight budget backpackers, so portability and price are very important to us. However, we also have a professional blog to run, so good image quality is equally important. Based on that information we decided to go for the Sony RX100 III, a high-end compact camera that fits into our pants pocket and has a large image sensor.
Once you know what features are important to you, check out our recommendation for the best travel camera for each type.
Best Compact Travel Cameras (Point-and-Shoot)
If price and portability is your main concern, point-and-shoot cameras are your best bet. Nowadays, compact cameras can be had for a very reasonable price and most will fit into your pants pocket or at the very least they won’t weigh down your luggage. Point-and-shoots have come a very long way in the recent years, and take pretty good images. If you are looking for an inexpensive, easy to use camera to document your journey for friends and family, check out our point-and-shoot recommendations below.
Sensor: 16.1MP 1/2.3″ BSI MOS
Weight: 19.84 oz.
Features: 60x Optical Zoom, Full HD 1080i Video
The Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ70 Digital Camera is a bridge-style point-and-shoot digital camera that features a 16.1 megapixel High Sensitivity BSI MOS sensor and Venus Engine image processor to produce high resolution still imagery and full HD 1080i/p video with notable low-light quality.
Sensor: 16.1MP CMOS
Weight: 9.4 oz.
Features: Built-in Wifi, 30x Optical Zoom, 3″ LCD, 1080p HD Video
The Canon Power Shot SX700 HS digital camera features a powerful 30x optical zoom that lets you get right down onto the field to preserve a big play, reach deep into the forest for spectacular wildlife close-ups, and capture majestic architecture just the way you see it.
Best High-End Compact Travel Cameras
High-end compact cameras are very similar to regular point-and-shoot cameras, but they usually have larger image sensors and come with some other cool features. For example, high-end compact cameras offer a full manual mode next to the auto mode and many allow you to take pictures in RAW format – which allows for better image editing on your computer later. If you don’t want to sacrifice the portability of a point-and-shoot but you need a camera that can capture higher quality images, then you will want to look into purchasing one of the high-end compact cameras below.
Sensor: 20.1MP4 BSI-CMOS
Weight: 10.2 oz.
Features: Built-in Wifi, Built-in ND filter, 3″ LCD, ISO 160-12800, captures RAW & JPG
The RX100 III is the camera that we use here on this blog as well. It is by far the most capable compact camera available. With its built-in viewfinder and consistently fast lens, there’s nothing that can provide better image quality in such a small package.
Sensor size: 12.1MP 1/1.7″ CMOS
Weight: 12.5 oz.
Features: Built-in wifi, full manual mode, captures RAW & JPG
The Canon PowerShot G16 Compact Digital Camera, with built-in Wi-Fi, is an advanced point-and-shoot camera featuring a 12.1 megapixel 1/1.7″ high-sensitivity CMOS sensor and DIGIC 6 image processor to produce high quality still imagery and full HD 1080p video.
Best Mirrorless Travel Cameras
Mirrorless cameras are by far the best for travel, allowing you to take very high quality images while still being compact enough to fit into your backpack. This type of camera is perfect for people who still want an interchangeable lens, without the weight of a DSLR. Below, we picked the best mirrorless cameras for travel.
Sensor size: 16MP X-Trans CMOS II
Weight: 13.4 oz.
Features: Water and dust resistant, up to 8 FPS continuous shooting, 3″ tiltable LCD
The Fuji X-T10 is an interchangeable lens digital camera with APS-C X-Trans CMOS II sensor. It combines a compact and lightweight body with a new AF Zone and Wide/Tracking modes.
Sensor size: 24MP CMOS
Weight: 20.8 oz.
Features: Fast Hybrid AF and 5 FPS burst, world’s first 5-axis in-body image stabilization in a full-frame camera, ISO 100-25600
The Sony A7 II minimizes blur in every shot with the world’s first in-body 5-axis image stabilization in a full-frame camera. Best of all, it works with your favorite lenses. With 24.3MP resolution, super-fast autofocus and a compact design, you’ll capture breathtaking imagery and video that is more stable than ever.
Best DSLR Travel Cameras
DSLR cameras offer the best image quality of any type of camera but they are also heavier and more expensive than mirrorless or point-and-shoot cameras. If you need superior image quality and don’t mind the extra weight, check out our favorite DSLR’s below.
Sensor size: 18MP APS-C CMOS
Weight: 13.1 oz.
Features: 3″ touch panel LCD, ISO 100-12800 (expandable to 25600)
The Rebel SL1 is small in size but enormous in performance. With a newly-designed Canon 18.0 Megapixel CMOS (APS-C) sensor and speedy Canon DIGIC 5 Image Processor, it delivers images of extraordinary quality – ideal for those stepping up from a smartphone or compact camera.
Sensor size: 24.2MP CMOS
Weight: 15.2 oz.
Features: 11 AF points with 3D tracking, ISO 100-12800 (expandable to 25600), 3″ LCD
The D3300, with its included zoom lens, the new ultra-compact AF-S DX NIKKOR 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G VR II is a small, easy to use HD-SLR. It captures beautiful 24.2-MP photos and 1080p Full HD videos with vibrant colors and softly blurred backgrounds, then you can share them instantly with your compatible smartphone and the optional WU-1a Wireless Adapter.
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