With just a few days to go before the deadline on Monday, I’d like to share with you my entry for the Thomas Cook Explore the Elements photography blogging competition. The idea is to share a photograph representing each of the elements and there are some great prizes up for grabs with the overall winner receiving £5,000. There’s still time to enter but you’ll have to be quick.

Earth

The volcanic landscape of Teide National Park on Tenerife conveys to me the drama and power of the Earth. Looking at the view before you is a reminder that deep inside the planet, molten lava bubbles and churns, eagerly awaiting its next release in a violent explosion onto the surface.

Explore the Elements - Earth - Teide National Park, Tenerife

 

Water

I visited Kerala many years ago and spent a lovely couple of days simply floating along the backwaters on a rice boat. This shot was taken very early in the morning, just after sunrise, when we had stopped off to visit a boat builder.

Exlpore the Elements - Water - Kerala Backwaters

I don’t remember seeing any other tourist boats during that time, other than the two of the people I was travelling with. It was a peaceful, rejuvenating experience, watching the world drift by; a wonderful chance to see people going about their daily lives – washing, fishing and travelling along the waterways. I was so sad to recently read that Kerala’s famous backwaters are now over run with tourist boats and these are poisoning the water that the locals rely on.

Fire

In the Sinai Desert of Egypt the sky almost seemed to catch fire as the setting sun lit up the clouds. These same clouds obliterated the stars we were there to see late that evening but they made for one hell of a sunset.

Explore the Elements - Fire - Sinai Sunset, Egypt

 

Air

In the busy spice souks, I had to be quick to catch this photo while on a fabulous food tour in Dubai. It is not always easy to capture the images you are after when in a group and you are all getting in each others’ way. Luckily I saw this picture coming with a split second to spare.

Explore the Elements - Air - The Spice Souks of Dubai

I love photographing hands, especially when two people connect. Added with the swirling smoke as it drifts through the air and the dazzling gold of the incense burner, this was just the sort of image I was hoping to capture.

 

Nominations

My 5 nominations are below (sorry for the short notice). The deadline is 23.59 on 16th March 2015..

Veronica, A dangerously truthful diary of a Sicilian housewife

Madhu, The Urge to Wander

Anna, Penelope and Parker Travels

Angela, Chasing the Unexpected

Paula, Contented Traveller

 

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Travel Planning Resources


Travel clothes for women

Check out my guide to all my favourite travel clothes for women.

Book your hotel

Agoda is my preferred hotel search engine. I also use Airbnb ($31 discount) for booking rooms/apartments.

Rent a car

Discover Car Hire is a great site for comparing car prices to find the best deal. They search both local and international rental companies.

Book an experience

When I’m travelling solo, especially to a new city, I use Viator and Get Your Guide to book tours and excursions, in particular, food walking tours or to visit somewhere tricky to get to by public transport.

Protect yourself and your trip

Don’t forget travel insurance! Protect yourself from possible injury, theft, and many other unexpected mishaps while abroad. World Nomads provides travel insurance to travellers from over 140 countries.  
 

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