Breathtaking Night Sky Photos from around the World
Night skies all over the world
Every day the beauty of our planet continues to mystify us.On our journey, we have been captivated by astonishing landscapes and the wildlife that inhabit our world. And yet when we take a moment to look up into the night we are, again and again, struck by its boundless beauty.
Nowadays, we will drive for miles to seek out the best viewing spots for meteor showers, comet viewings, planet alignments or just to count shooting stars. We've amassed a collection of night sky photos and we'd like to share our gallery of favourites with you.Be sure to ramp-up the brightness on your screen for this one.
Miyakojima, Islands of Okinawa, Japan
Miyakojima makes up one of the Southwestern islands of Japan, known as the Ryukyu Islands. Miyakojima is one of the smaller, less touristed in this chain of islands. The region being famous for its brown sugar, we were able to capture the Milky way amongst the sugar canes before the clouds covered the sky completely.
Mauna Kea, Big Island, Hawai'i
Mauna Kea, is a dormant volcano that sits at 33,000 ft above its oceanic plate, making it the tallest mountain in the world. The mountain towers over the Big Island and is ringed with rolling landscapes of forested valleys, grassy plains, rugged cliffs and fertile rainforests. Light pollution is no threat to photography here as nearest town is over 40 miles away.
Sitting at the peak of the mountain is the Gemini Observatory, perhaps the most notable observatory in the world. As we pulled off the gravel track to take our photos, the ground was coated in rocks and sand. It was just like what we imagined the surface of the moon to be.
On the left of the image is the fiery breath of the Kilauea Volcano juxtaposed by a glimpse of the Milky Way on the right.
Mount St Helen's, Washington State, USA
One crisp evening just outside of Portland, we drove up to the Mount St Helen’s volcano. Just as we were getting ready to go to bed (in the back of the car), we decided to pop outside with the camera and tripod.
The yellow hue on the horizon is caused by the light pollution of a nearby town. Ordinarily the light from the car would have over-exposed the image, but with the use of ND (neutral density) Filters, we were able to filter out some of the light from the inside of the car revealing a striking view of the Milky Way.
Darwin, Northern Territory, Australia
One excruciatingly hot evening, relaxing in our campervan in Litchfield National Park we captured this image.
The awesomeness of Australia's sky at night is not truly represented in this photo due to our having a less capable camera at the time. When it comes to shooting the night sky, it’s vital that you can have as many manual controls as possible on your camera to allow you to tailor its operation to the conditions (shutter speed, aperture, light sensitivity etc).
Yosemite National Park, California, USA
At the bottom of the image you can see the silhouette of Yosemite's distinctive Half-Dome peak. On another cold night, we drove up to the Glacier Point Viewpoint at an elevation of over 7,000ft. We expected to be the only photographers there that night, but were delighted to be shooting alongside other night sky enthusiasts.
Lake Tahoe, California, USA
This image was captured along the edge of Route 89, next to Emerald Bay State Park. This spot offered panoramic views of the Lake and the faint reflections of the stars bouncing off the water.
The beige tone along the horizon is caused by the lights from Round Hill Village, which offered a dramatic contrast to the darkness of the surrounding woodland.
Iguazu Falls, Argentina
When the moon reaches it's fullest, the Iguazu Falls National Park offer a Lunar Walking Tour to the Devil's Throat of the Falls. On the last night of the full moon, we were lucky enough to secure the last places on the Lunar Tour. What we witnessed that night was unforgettable - standing before us, illuminated only by the moonlight, was the blazing throat of the falls.
Having arrived at around 9pm, the moon had risen so high that we were barely able to capture the stars from it's blinding light. Instead, the moon illuminated the precipice of the falls allowing us to shoot the silhouette of the seemingly endless gushing of water as it descended into the pools below.
Puerto Natales, Patagonia, Chile
The fishing boats bounced rhythmically as the water lapped around them, the only sounds we could hear was the faint groan of passing cars and the rippling of the water against the jetty we were shooting from. The greenish tones fringing the upper corners of the image were caused by the light radiating from the town being reflected against our ND Filters.
Nevertheless, the waves subsided long enough for us to get a beautiful image of a small fishing boat, surrounded by reflections of the street lights streaking along the surface of the water.
This gallery showcases a variety of night sky photos taken during our travels so far. Some of them were taken on an earlier camera, less equipped for this kind of photography. However, we were always astonished by how the photos came out. We also do very little editing to them, only using the editing tools already available on the iPhone or Android.There are numerous variables that can affect your night sky photography. For example, if you take a photo during a full moon, the light emitted from the moon can be too bright to capture the Milky Way or the light pollution produced from nearby towns will also have an affect on the clarity of your night sky photography.
That said, night photography is a great way to get yourself outdoors when you'd be least likely to (especially if you're terrified a bear might eat us) and we've learned a lot about photography. We've had so many moments of pure joy just gazing into the vastness of our galaxy.
The night sky beckons... answer it!