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10 Sick-As-Hell Nature Photos from NatGeo’s Latest Competition

The Travel Photographer of the Year contest just kicked off, and the competition is already fiercely beautiful.

by Beckett Mufson
May 4 2017, 1:45pm

When photographers compete, photography lovers win, at least when it comes to the relentless onslaught of beautiful visuals vying for the top spot in National Geographic's annual Travel Photographer of the Year contest.

Curated by NatGeo's editors around the theme of nature, we have a selection of the early entries to the contest, which will pour in until it closes on June 30. The artists make mundane scenery look sublime with all sorts of interesting angles and right-place-right-time storytelling. Anyone who appreciates the spectrum of land, sea, and sky photos are winners in spirit, but National Geographic is also awarding a 10-day trip for two to the Galápagos Archipelago with National Geographic Expeditions.

Check out stunning photos of fauna and foliage below.

Photo and caption by Manish Mamtani / National Geographic Travel Photographer of the Year Contest A drive to remember Aerial view of the Scenic drive and the beautiful Fall colors of New Hampshire. I used a drone to capture the fall colors that cannot be seen from the road.

Photo and caption by Shane Gross / National Geographic Travel Photographer of the Year Contest In Your Face Caribbean reef sharks are usually shy so I placed my camera on a rock where I know they frequent and used a remote trigger to click away as they came in and bumped my camera around.

Photo and caption by Hiroshi Tanita / National Geographic Travel Photographer of the Year Contest SymmetryrtemmyS Cherry blossoms reflected in perfect condition.

Photo and caption by Takahiro Bessho / National Geographic Travel Photographer of the Year Contest The Mirror Lake Yogo, called "The lake of Mirror", sometimes reflects everything in front of you.

Photo and caption by Marc Henauer / National Geographic Travel Photographer of the Year Contest Swallows Cave A freediver swim in the deep of "swallows cave" in Tonga. This cave is settled by more than few thousand fish. They offer you a spectacular ballet when you dive inside. The contrast between the dark of the bottom and the light of the top make bright the fishes like stars.

Photo and caption by Adam Cunningham-White/ National Geographic Travel Photographer of the Year Contest Lost in white This photo captures the moment that I, along with 3 other Sami reindeer herders become a little lost while migrating with 350 reindeer. They were rounded up from a section of forest around 30kms south of this point. Our goal was to take them, via rivers, northwards to pastures new using the network of rivers and lakes that flow through Sweden. This was taken on Randijaur lake, Jokkmokk, Sweden

Photo and caption by Hidetoshi Ogata / National Geographic Travel Photographer of the Year Contest Little Eyewitness "Little Eyewitness" was taken in Jigokudani Monkey Park, Nagano, Japan on December, 2016. On a cold winter's day, monkeys have several ways to keep off the cold. For example, in order to keep them warm, they have a soak in a hot spring, take a bedrock bath or huddle together, etc. While monkeys were huddling together, I approached them with the stealthy footsteps. Then I photographed them from directly above at the moment when a little monkey nestled in mother's arms looked to the camera.

Photo and caption by Nao Akimoto / National Geographic Travel Photographer of the Year Contest Blue pond the stellar sky Voice from the stars

Photo and caption by Hiroki Inoue / National Geographic Travel Photographer of the Year Contest Morning Cranes I was able to capture the silhouettes of the cranes through the morning fog.

Photo and caption by Tetsuya Hosokawa / National Geographic Travel Photographer of the Year Contest Moss forest Yakushima is an island full of abundant moss and beautiful water

Follow the National GeographicTravel Photographer of the Year contest here

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