12 Best Portable Cameras for Travel Photography

When it comes to choosing a main go-to camera, most pros and serious enthusiasts still gravitate to full-frame, pro-caliber DSLRs. But when you’re traveling, hiking, or simply enjoying your vacation, the prospect of toting a top-tier DSLR outfit can be daunting. Fortunately, technology has come to the rescue and there is now a wide variety of more compact, lightweight, travel-friendly cameras that deliver outstanding image quality and shooting performance in far more convenient form factors. They’re also less intimidating when you’re taking photos of the local people you may encounter.

Travel-friendly camera types:

  1. Mirrorless interchangeable-lens cameras that provide the essential DSLR shooting experience, thanks to hi-res electronic viewfinders (EVFs) and full feature sets, including ultra-fast, precise hybrid AF systems that provide continuous AF and focus tracking.
  2. Handy all-in-one zoom cameras that deliver a fetching combination of a sleek form factor, wide-to-telephoto focal lengths, and fast apertures optimized for capturing shallow-depth-of-field effects and shooting in low light.
  3. Unique cameras that offer many of the capabilities listed above, but add their own distinctive style, and features that push the design envelope. While the 12 cool cameras featured below don’t constitute an exhaustive list, they’ll definitely give you a head start in choosing those models that best suit your shooting style when you’re on the move.

Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark II

This upgraded upper-tier Micro-Four-Thirds-system camera retains that classic “downsized DSLR” look, but its real-world performance has been enhanced, thanks to an upgraded 16.1MP Live MOS image sensor, coupled to a TruePic VII processor that provides increased responsiveness, enhanced image quality, improved 81-zone AF performance, and better imaging at high ISOs.

It also has a larger, wider-view, higher magnification, 2,260k-dot EVF; a 3.0-inch 1,037k-dot vari-angle touchscreen OLED monitor; and an innovative five-axis sensor-shift image stabilization system claimed to deliver a five-stop advantage in capturing shake-free images when shooting stills or 1920 x 1080 full HD video handheld. It can also shoot full-res bursts with AF at up to 10 fps, has built-in Wi-Fi for sharing and remote camera control, sensitivity to ISO 25600, plus a full range of built-in Art filters.

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