best dslr for travel photography

We’ve put together a detailed and helpful guide to the best DSLR cameras for travel Photography. As professional travel photographers, we’ll help you decide if a DSLR camera is a good choice for you, provide advice on how to choose the best DSLR camera, and share a list of the best DSLR cameras currently available across various price points.

DSLR cameras are a popular camera choice for travel photographers, as they offer great battery life, excellent image quality, a wide range of lens options, and full manual controls. They allow the photographer to take a lot of control over their travel photography and are available at a wide range of price points to suit most budgets.

Best Dslr For Travel Photography

1. Overall Best DSLR Camera for Travel

– Canon EOS 6D Mark II

Overall Best DSLR Camera for Travel

Sensor: 26.2MP Full-Frame CMOS Sensor

ISO Range: 100 to 40000 (Extended: 50 to 102400)

Viewfinder: 21mm Optical with 98% Coverage and 0.71x Magnification

Screen: 3.0-inch 1.04m-dot Articulating Touchscreen LCD

Image File Format: JPEG and RAW

Image Stabilization: Digital, 5-Axis (Video Only)

Burst Shooting: 6.5fps

Connectivity: Wi-Fi, NFC, Bluetooth, Canon N3, HDMI C (Mini), Mini-B (USB 2.0)

Battery Life: 1,200 Shots

Weight: 685 g (Body Only)

The Canon EOS 6D Mark II is a blend of advanced performance and an ergonomic design. It features a 26.2MP Full-Frame CMOS Sensor that pairs with a DIGIC 7 Image Processor to deliver sharper, brighter images in most shooting conditions. With it, you will enjoy a burst shooting rate of 6.5fps (4.5fps in Live View).

To complement the powerful sensor and processor, it sports a 45-point all-cross-type AF system. This autofocus ensures your images are tack sharp due to its accurate subject tracking capabilities. Along with the faster AF system, the sensor features Dual Pixel CMOS AF technology that boosts its focusing during video shooting and Live View.

The 6D Mark II comes in a durable weather-sealed body to permit working in extreme environments. Its body design is smaller and lighter. At 685 grams, this DSLR camera weighs almost the same as the iconic Sony Alpha A7 III that we recommend as the best mirrorless camera for travel photography bloggers.

Pros:

  • A robust, compact, and lighter body design with a comfortable grip.
  • Built-in GPS to geo-tag your photos.
  • Shoots up to 1,200 photos with a single battery charge.
  • A large, fully articulating touchscreen LCD that flips to the side for selfie shots.
  • The EF-Mount lenses are very affordable and come in a wide range of selection.
  • Records 1080p videos at up to 60fps.

Cons:

  • It comes with just a single SD card slot.
  • Lacks a built-in flash.

The Canon EOS 6D Mark II is a brilliant and affordable workhorse DSLR that ticks a lot of boxes for many travel photographers. On top of its high-performance and top-notch imaging capabilities, it comes in a solid design that is compact and lighter.

Pairing it up with a versatile lens like the Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8L II USM will allow travel photographers to shoot print-worthy landscape and portrait photos.

2. Best Nikon DSLR Camera for Professional Travel Photography

– Nikon D850

Best Nikon DSLR Camera for Professional Travel Photography

Sensor: 45.7 MP Full-Frame BSI CMOS Sensor

ISO Range: 64 to 25600 (Extended: 32 to 102400)

Viewfinder: 17mm Optical with 100% Coverage and 0.75x Magnification

Screen: 3.2-inch 2.359m-dot Tilting Touchscreen LCD

Image File Format: JPEG, RAW, TIFF

Image Stabilization: None

Burst Shooting: 7fps

Connectivity: WiFi, Bluetooth, HDMI C (Mini), Nikon 10-Pin, X-Sync Socket, Micro-B (USB 3.0)

Battery Life: 1,840 Shots

Weight: 915 g (Body and Battery)

When it comes to the best DSLR cameras for travel photography, it’s a war between Canon and Nikon. The Canon 6D Mark II wins the battle of the best DSLR with a mirrorless-like body and excellent imaging capabilities. But Nikon takes things a top-notch higher with its D850 model. 

The Nikon D850 features a massive 45.7MP Full-Frame BSI CMOS Sensor that pairs with a powerful EXPEED 5 Image Processor. The combination allows it to deliver sharper images with improved clarity, even in low-light conditions. With it, you’ll enjoy a 7fps burst shooting rate for up to 51 consecutive frames.

To complement the powerful sensor and faster processor, it comes with an ultra-accurate AF system. The AF system features a dedicated autofocus processor, 153 total phase-detection points, and 99 cross-type sensors. It’s such a superfast AF that will track and capture even the most elusive subjects. 

Pros:

  • A robust weather-sealed body.
  • Records UHD 4K/30fps and Full HD 1080p/120fps for slow-motion.
  • A wide dynamic range and an impressive low-light performance.
  • A tilting high-resolution intuitive touchscreen that’s very responsive.
  • Battery life can be extended up to 5140 shots with the optional MB-D18 grip and EN-EL18a/b battery.
  • One XQD slot and a UHS II-compliant SD slot.

Cons:

  • Slightly heavier and a bit more expensive than Canon 6D Mark II.
  • Lacks an in-body image stabilization.
  • Lacks a built-in flash and GPS.

The Nikon D850 has been widely praised as one of the best professional-level cameras in the market. It’s a blend of a powerful sensor, extremely fast processor, and incredibly accurate autofocus. A combination that delivers flawless images with a distinct sharpness, especially when paired with a versatile lens like the Nikon 28 – 300 mm f/3.5-5.6G ED VR

3. Best Canon DSLR Camera for Professional Travel Photography

– Canon EOS 5D Mark IV

Best Canon DSLR Camera for Professional Travel Photography

Sensor: 30.4MP Full-Frame CMOS Sensor

ISO Range: 100 to 32000 (Extended: 50 to 102400)

Viewfinder: 21mm Optical with 100% Coverage and 0.71x Magnification

Screen: 3.2-inch 1.62m-Dot Fixed Touchscreen LCD Monitor

Image File Format: JPEG, RAW

Image Stabilization: None

Burst Shooting: 7fps

Connectivity: WiFi with NFC, Canon N3, HDMI C (Mini), Micro-B (USB 3.0)

Battery Life: 900 Shots

Weight: 840 g (Body and Battery)

The Canon EOS 5D Mark IV is yet another professional-grade workhorse camera that will give you outstanding performance in both still photography and videos. At the heart of this camera sits a 30.4MP Full-Frame CMOS Sensor that pairs with a DIGIC 6+ image processor. A combination that delivers sharper, low-noise images with fine details even in low light situations.

Along with the advanced sensor and processor, 5D Mark IV comes with an enhanced 61-points AF system. A feature that improves the camera’s speed and accuracy during subject tracking to deliver tack sharp photos. It also comes with a Dual Pixel CMOS AF that boosts its focusing when working in Live View and shooting videos.

Just like the Nikon D850, 5D Mark IV will deliver a burst shooting rate of 7fps. And as an icing to its stunning performance and advanced imaging capabilities, the camera packs extra features for the best photography experience. Such features include built-in GPS for geotagging, rich connectivity options like WiFi with NFC, great battery life of about 900 shots, and a wide EF-mount lens selection. 

Pros:

  • A durable, robust weather-sealed magnesium-alloy body to permit working in harsh environments.
  • Shoots stunning images with sharper, more vivid details.
  • Impressive focusing even in dimly lit conditions, which is a plus for travel photography.
  • Supports DCI 4K (4096 x 2160) video recording at up to 30 fps at 500 Mbps.
  • A large 3.2-inch touchscreen LCD monitor that is very responsive and handy.

Cons:

  • Quite pricey compared to the above two rivals.
  • The LCD is fixed!
  • Lacks a built-in flash and in-camera image stabilization.

The Canon EOS 5D Mark IV is a top performer, especially when paired with a versatile, workhorse lens like the Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8L II USM. But you’ll be paying a premium price for it! While most travelers would get away with the Canon 6D Mark II in their photography, the 5D Mark IV is a camera we would recommend if you’re looking to do a lot of cropping and editing while post-processing your images.

4. Best DSLR Camera for Travel Vlogging

– Canon EOS 80D

Best DSLR Camera for Travel Vlogging

Sensor: 24.2MP APS-C CMOS Sensor

ISO Range: 100 to 16000 (Extended: 100 to 25600)

Viewfinder: 22mm Optical with 100% Coverage and 0.95x Magnification

Screen: 3.0-inch 1.04m-Dot Articulating Touchscreen LCD

Image File Format: JPEG, RAW

Image Stabilization: None

Burst Shooting: 7fps

Connectivity: WiFi, HDMI C (Mini), Mini-B (USB 2.0)

Battery Life: 960 Shots

Weight: 730 g (Body with Battery)

Not everyone wants an advanced, professional camera for their travel photography. If you’re looking for a robust, durable DSLR to document your travel adventures in high-quality still shots and videos, then the Canon EOS 80D might be a charm!

The 80D has built a reputation around itself as the YouTubers’ favorite camera. It’s one of the best DSLR cameras for travel vlogging out there. This prosumer camera features a 24.2MP APS-C CMOS Sensor and DIGIC 6 image processor.

Complementing the crop-sensor and a faster processor is an apt 45-point all cross-type AF system. The autofocus delivers fast performance when tracking moving subjects, even in dimly lit situations while shooting with the viewfinder.

On top of the autofocus, 80D features Dual Pixel CMOS AF and the Movie Servo AF focusing functions that will benefit vloggers when recording videos. Its other useful features include an intuitive touchscreen, microphone, and headphone jacks.

Pros:

  • An affordable and durable enthusiast-grade DSLR with a solid-rock performance in both stills and video.
  • Captures impressive images at 7fps in burst shooting rate.
  • Records 1080p footages at up to 60fps which is perfect for YouTube and social media.
  • A larger, responsive 3.0″ 1.04m-Dot Vari-Angle Touchscreen LCD that tilts to the side for selfie-mode shooting.
  • It comes with a built-in flash, with an option to hook a dedicated flash via the Hot Shoe.

Cons:

  • Lacks 4K video support.
  • Lacks a built-in image stabilization and GPS.

The Canon EOS 80D might be the perfect choice for enthusiast travel photographers who want to document their adventures. It’s affordable, durable, and has proved it can deliver impressive results when it comes to shooting stunning imagery. Some of the best travel/portrait lenses to pair up with this camera includes the Sigma 17-50mm f/2.8 for Canon and the Canon 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM.

5. An Affordable Alternative to Nikon and Canon Cameras

– Pentax K-70

An Affordable Alternative to Nikon and Canon Cameras

Sensor: 24.24MP APS-C CMOS Sensor

ISO Range: 100 to 204800

Viewfinder: 20.5mm Optical with 100% Coverage and 0.95x Magnification

Screen: 3.0-inch 921k-Dot Articulating LCD Monitor

Image File Format: DNG, JPEG, RAW

Image Stabilization: Sensor-Shift

Burst Shooting: 6fps

Connectivity: WiFi, HDMI D (Micro), Micro-B (USB 2.0)

Battery Life: 480 Shots

Weight: 688 g (Body with Battery and Memory)

The Pentax K-70 is an impressive alternative to Nikon and Canon cameras, which are the two main DSLR manufacturers. It’s quite affordable despite having a rugged design and proving to be an excellent performer. It features a 24.24MP APS-C CMOS Sensor and PRIME MII Image Processor.

K-70 is capable of shooting up to 6fps in burst rate and record stunning Full HD 1080p footage at up to 60fps. Our favorite feature is the built-in sensor-shift type Shake Reduction (SR). This image stabilization helps in minimizing the appearance of camera shake during handheld shooting for sharper images.

The K-70’s LCD is articulating and flips to the side for selfie-mode shots. As a travel photographer, you will love the sleek, compact and a lighter body-design that only weighs 688 grams. This is a big deal if you are a minimalist traveler or backpacker when the weight and ize of your gear matters. 

Pros:

  • An affordable DSLR with a sleek and compact weather-sealed body and rock-solid performance.
  • The kit lenses are affordable and will still do a great job!
  • A fully weather-sealed body which is a fantastic feature for a camera at its price point.
  • Built-in stereo mic with an option for a 3.5mm external mic input.
  • Built-in flash with an option for a dedicated flash via the Hot Shoe.
  • Innovate anti-shake technology.

Cons:

  • The LCD is not a touchscreen.
  • An average battery life (480 shots) and an autofocus system with only 11 phase-detection points (9 Cross-Type).
  • It doesn’t have a huge range of lenses like Nikon and Canon cameras.
  • Lacks extra features like GPS, which we have seen in the big contenders.

Due to its lack of advanced features like a touch-enabled LCD, poor autofocus, and a few lens options, we wouldn’t recommend this camera to the photography enthusiasts. But the Pentax K-70 stands out as one of the best DSLR cameras for beginner and intermediate travel bloggers. We advise getting it along with the Pentax 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 lens that provides a 27.5-207mm equivalent focal length range.

6. World’s Smallest and Lightest DSLR!

– Canon EOS Rebel SL3

World’s Smallest and Lightest DSLR

Sensor: 24.1MP APS-C CMOS Sensor

ISO Range: 100 to 25600 (Extended: 100 to 51200)

Viewfinder: 19mm Optical with 95% Coverage and 0.87x Magnification

Screen: 3.0-inch 1.04m-Dot Articulating Touchscreen LCD

Image File Format: JPEG, RAW

Image Stabilization: Digital, 5-Axis (Video Only)

Burst Shooting: 5fps

Connectivity: WiFi, Bluetooth, HDMI C (Mini), Micro-B (USB 2.0)

Battery Life: 1,630 Shots

Weight: 449 g (Body with Battery and Memory) 

The Canon EOS Rebel SL3 is the smallest and lightest DSLR ever, as of early 2020. It weighs about a pound with battery and SD card but doesn’t fall short when it comes to its features and performance. At the heart of this camera sits a 24.1MP APS-C CMOS Sensor that pairs with a DIGIC 8 Image Processor.

The improved crop-factor sensor and a faster processor combination offer it with the versatility to shoot stunningly vivid and sharper stills and videos. Travel photographers will enjoy a 5fps burst shooting rate. And vloggers will benefit from its UHD 4K/24fps video recording and 4K Time-Lapse movie capabilities.

When shooting with the viewfinder you’ll benefit from its 9-point phase-detection AF system for quick and accurate subject tracking. It also features a Dual Pixel CMOS AF that uses phase-detection autofocus for quick, precise, and smooth focusing when shooting stills in Live View and video recording.

Pros:

  • Shoots impressive JPEGs for a camera of its price!
  • A wide lens selection for the Canon EF-S mount.
  • A superb built-in microphone and a 3.5mm external mic input, despite its compact design.
  • An impressive battery life of about 1630 shots per charge when working with the viewfinder (350 shots in live view) for a DSLR of its size.
  • Built-in flash with an option for a dedicated flash via the Hot Shoe.

Cons:

  • Lacks extra features like GPS.
  • A sub-par autofocus system.
  • The 4K video has limitations.

The Canon EOS Rebel SL3 is the perfect camera for entry-level travel photographers and vloggers. It’s lighter and more compact than most of the budget DSLRs out there, which are designed for beginners. As a beginner, you can get away with documenting your adventures with the 18-55mm kit lens. But for the best experience, we recommend the Sigma 17-50mm f/2.8 for Canon lens.

7. Best Entry-Level DSLR Camera for Travel Photography

– Canon EOS Rebel 7

Best Entry-Level DSLR Camera for Travel Photography

Sensor: 24.1MP APS-C CMOS Sensor

ISO Range: 100 to 6400 (Extended: 100 to 12800)

Viewfinder: 21mm Optical with 95% Coverage and 0.8x Magnification

Screen: 3.0-inch 920k-Dot Fixed LCD

Image File Format: JPEG, RAW

Image Stabilization: None

Burst Shooting: 3fps

Connectivity: WiFi with NFC, Canon E3, HDMI C (Mini), Micro-B (USB 2.0)

Battery Life: 500 Shots

Weight: 475 g (Body with Battery and Memory)

The Canon EOS Rebel 7 is a compact and capable entry-level DSLR that comes at an enticingly low price tag. But despite its budget price, it still packs some helpful feature-set and versatile imaging capabilities. It, however, lacks the frills that you would find in the advanced Canon cameras like 4K video and flip-out screen.

Rebel T7 obtains its power from the 24.1MP APS-C CMOS Sensor and DIGIC 4+ image processor. A combination that produces high-resolution images with reduced noise and notable clarity in a variety of lighting situations. With it, you will manage to shoot at 3fps in burst rate and record 1080p videos at 30fps.

To increase its accuracy and focusing speed when shooting through the optical viewfinder, Rebel T7 uses a 9-point AF system with a single center cross-type AF point. Additionally, it also incorporates a contrast-detection focusing system for a refined focusing accuracy when shooting in Live View and video recording.

Pros:

  • Very affordable to suit beginner travel photographers.
  • Its controls are logically laid out, making it easy to use for the entry-level photographers.
  • Captures good quality photos and Full-HD videos, which will look great on social media (Instagram), Youtube, and your travel adventure gallery.
  • Built-in stereo mic and flash, with an option to use a dedicated flash via the Hot Shoe.
  • A decent battery life that will give you about 500 shots per charge.

Cons:

  • The LCD is fixed and not a touchscreen.
  • The autofocus system is dated.
  • Lacks extra features like GPS, weather-sealing, 4K video, external mic input, and in-camera IS.

The Canon EOS Rebel 7 (EOS 2000D) is super affordable and easy to use. Its battery life is far better than what you would get from the mirrorless and compact cameras at its price range. When paired with the 18-55mm kit lens, it becomes a well-rounded entry-level travel DSLR option.

8. A Nikon Alternative to the Canon Rebel T7

– Nikon D3500

A Nikon Alternative to the Canon Rebel T7

Sensor: 24.2MP DX-Format CMOS Sensor

ISO Range: 100 to 25600

Viewfinder: 18mm Optical with 95% Coverage and 0.85x Magnification

Screen: 3.0-inch 921k-dot Fixed LCD

Image File Format: JPEG, RAW

Image Stabilization: None

Burst Shooting: 5fps

Connectivity: Bluetooth, HDMI C (Mini), Micro-B (USB 2.0)

Battery Life: 1,550 Shots

Weight: 365 g (570 g with the 18-55mm Kit Lens)

The Nikon D3500 is yet another great entry-level DSLR. For about the price of the Canon Rebel T7 with an 18-55mm kit lens, you will get the D3500 with an 18-55mm kit lens. This camera utilizes a 24.2MP DX-Format CMOS Sensor and EXPEED 4 image processor.

Just like Rebel T7, the D3500 lacks the frills that you would find in an advanced high-end camera like the D850. The sensor and processor combination delivers up to 5fps burst shooting rate and Full HD 1080p video recording at up to 60fps. That’s compared to Rebel T7’s 3fps burst rate and 1080p/30fps video recording.

To complement its imaging capabilities, D3500 features an apt AF system with 11 phase-detection points. The autofocus allows it to quickly acquire focus in a range of lighting situations. It lacks WiFi but offers SnapBridge Bluetooth connectivity which permits file transfer to smart devices.

Pros:

  • Compact, lightweight, easy-to-use, and versatile.
  • Almost all of the rear controls are on the right-hand side of the grip for easier one-handed control.
  • An impressive 1,550 shot battery life.
  • Excellent image quality and videos that will look great on social media (Instagram), YouTube, and your travel adventure media gallery.
  • A built-in pop-up flash with an option for a dedicated flash via the Hot Shoe.

Cons:

  • No WiFi.
  • No touchscreen control.
  • No 4K video.

The Nikon D3500 is a blend of decent performance, intuitive menu, and excellent battery life. And for its affordable price (the camera body and an 18-55mm kit lens), this DSLR is surely a great value. We would recommend it as the beginner-friendly alternative to the Rebel T7.

9. A Great Mid-Range DSLR Camera for the Enthusiast Travel Photographers

– Canon EOS Rebel T7i

A Great Mid-Range DSLR Camera for the Enthusiast Travel Photographers

Sensor: 24.2MP APS-C CMOS Sensor

ISO Range: 100 to 25600 (Extended: 100 to 51200)

Viewfinder: 19mm Optical with 95% Coverage and 0.82x Magnification

Screen: 3.0-inch 1.04m- dot Articulating Touchscreen LCD

Image File Format: JPEG, RAW

Image Stabilization: Digital, 5-Axis (Video Only)

Burst Shooting: 6fps

Connectivity: Wi-Fi with NFC, Bluetooth, HDMI C (Mini), Mini-B (USB 2.0)

Battery Life: 820 Shots

Weight: 532 g 

The Canon EOS Rebel T7i and Rebel 7 share an almost similar name appearance. But they are two totally different Canon camera models. The Rebel T7 is the newer model of the two, despite being a low-end camera. When it comes to their features, performance, and build quality, the Rebel T7i wins in almost every category.

When it comes to performance, the Canon EOS Rebel T7i is built around newer technology. It inherits the same 24.2MP APS-C CMOS Sensor and 49-point autofocus system from the enthusiast YouTubers’ favorite, Canon 80D. The T7i also features an improved DIGIC 7 Image Processor. 

The sensor, processor, and autofocus combination allows it to achieve a continuous shooting rate of 6fps. With this camera, you should be able to capture high-resolution, detail-rich stills and video that are sharper and brighter. Both the T7 and T7i shoot Full HD 1080p videos, but the T7i can do it up to 60fps.

Pros:

  • An excellent image sensor, processor, and autofocus combination.
  • The Feature Assistant guides menus let new users get up and running quickly.
  • An impressive and very responsive touchscreen.
  • Built-in stereo mic, plus a 3.5mm external mic input.
  • Dual Pixel Autofocus (DPAF) for Live View and shooting videos.
  • Built-in flash with an option for a dedicated flash via the Hot Shoe.

Cons:

  • Lacks 4K video.
  • A plastic finish that isn’t weather-sealed.

The Canon EOS Rebel T7i stands out as one of the best beginner-friendly DSLR cameras for travel photography in the market today. Its fast performance, an articulating touchscreen, Feature Assistant, decent battery life, and streamlined wireless connectivity makes it an easy-to-use camera for beginners. 

10. Best DSLR Camera for Wildlife and Action Photography

– Canon EOS 7D Mark II

Best DSLR Camera for Wildlife and Action Photography

Sensor: 20.2MP APS-C CMOS Sensor

ISO Range: 100 to 16000 (Extended: 100 to 51200)

Viewfinder: 22mm Optical with 100% Coverage and 1x Magnification

Screen: 3.0-inch 1.04m-dot Fixed LCD

Image File Format: JPEG, RAW

Image Stabilization: None

Burst Shooting: 10fps

Connectivity: Wi-Fi (via an adapter)

Battery Life: 670 Shots

Weight: 910 g

The Canon EOS 7D Mark II and 7D Mark II fall within the same price range but the latter is designed with a penchant for speed. Unlike the 6D Mark II that comes with a Full-Frame sensor, the 7D Mark II sports a 20.2MP APS-C CMOS Sensor. The crop-sensor works with dual DIGIC 6 image processors to deliver a 10fps continuous shooting rate.

With the 7D Mark II, things get juicy when you put its 65-point all cross-type phase-detection AF system and Dual Pixel CMOS AF technology into perspective. They offer a fast and accurate focusing performance for both optical viewfinder and live view shooting. The speedy and precise focusing has made this DSLR stand out in the world of action and wildlife photography.

Among the extra features that stand out in this DSLR include two memory card slots that support SD (UHS-I) and CompactFlash (UDMA 7). It shoots stunning 1080p videos at up to 60fps. The stills and video footage quality are exceptionally vibrant with fine details despite coming from a crop sensor. We recommend pairing it with the Canon 18-200mm f/3.5-5.6 IS lens for the best experience.

Pros:

  • A weather-sealed body to permit working in harsh environments.
  • Excellent ergonomics for easy handling.
  • A dedicated autofocus point selection joystick and excellent subject tracking capabilities.
  • It offers plenty of customization options.
  • Built-in GPS for geotagging your photos.
  • A decent battery life that will capture about 670 shots per charge.

Cons:

  • The LCD is fixed and not a touchscreen.
  • No built-in WiFi connectivity (only with an adapter).

If your travel adventures are about wildlife and action photography, you should consider investing in Canon EOS 7D Mark II. It packs rich features for quick focusing and capturing moving subjects. If you are, however, looking for a Nikon alternative, we would advise getting the Nikon D500. It still comes with an excellent APS-C sensor, 10fps burst rate, a brilliant AF system, and a weather-sealed body

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