Lonely Planet Writer

LP Pathfinders: top Instagrams from June 2016

This month, our Pathfinders challenged us once again to narrow down all of the amazing images we received to just five. It wasn't easy but our top picks take us from secluded beaches and desert dunes to urban high rise cityscapes and mountain vistas.

Every month we share the most eye-catching and interesting captures from our Pathfinders community. Here are our selections for June.

Erg Chebbi Dunes, Morocco

‘Every now and again you'll bump into one of those special places that make you think how different things look around the world, and this was one of those for me. While watching an amazing sunset in Sahara Desert I couldn't miss capturing this shot.’ - João Leitão, @joaoleitaoviagens.

Why we like it: Not only is this a great silhouette of a man leading a camel, it also has perfect placement of the sun setting on the horizon. We see the rays streaking over the dunes, barely illuminating the surface and that magical slither of extra light reveals both the subtle ripples in the sand near the man’s feet and the expansiveness of the landscape.

Victoria Park, Hong Kong

‘While hunting down the best luxury experiences for less than a dollar in Hong Kong I wound up getting a street food picnic with these insane views overlooking the city. The best (and cheapest) sky high meal ever.’ - Dan James, @danflyingsolo.

Why we like it: The cool purple hues in the background of this image seem to recede infinitely creating an immensely expansive view of the city. The warm pale yellow buildings in the foreground seem to move towards us in space and have a defined geometry that make us want to study the various architectural details over and over.

Paje, Zanzibar

‘Relaxing on the beautiful beach in Paje, Zanzibar, I took this photo of three Masai strolling past. I love the bright red of their clothes against the white sand and turquoise sea.’ Hayley Lewis, @alovelyplanet.

Why we like it: We agree! It’s the matching bright red clothes against the beautiful turquoise sea that draws us to this image. The shoreline and the line of seaweed also frame the three women perfectly and lead us along the path with them. This photo also makes us want to be on that peaceful beach too, listening to the waves and being totally delighted to see such a tranquil scene.

The Forbidden City, Beijing, China

A photo posted by Pramod Kanakath (@premkan) on

‘My guide was right. Get to the eastern verandah after entering the Gate of Supreme Harmony (pictured here) and you will get a beautiful view with the moat as an embellishing foreground.’ -krakatao , @premkan.

Why we like it: It’s easy to engage with this image because of the strong directional lines that carry our eyes through the curved moat to the bridge and then to the golden brown roofline and red barrier around the palace. After a moment of studying the intricate details we move our eyes back to the moat and contemplate the boat slightly askew before we wander up through the curved waterway again and repeat the process.

Barrier Lake, Kananaskis, Alberta Canada

A photo posted by Tara Povey (@whereistarablog) on

‘I was staying in a TP with my boyfriend in the Kananaskis area about 45 minutes from Banff. We had been forced to stay out there because we couldn't find anything online in the town of Banff itself, which I wasn't so happy about at the time of booking. However, I quickly changed my mind. We decided to explore the Kananaskis area and found so many beautiful spots with not a single tourist around (apart from us!). Barrier Lake was one of these spots. I am obsessed with wild flowers and really wanted them in the shot. I had to lie down on the grass to get this shot, worth it though!’ - Tara Povey, @whereistarablog.

Why we like it: The framing of this image is excellent in the foreground, middle ground and background. Placing the wildflowers at the bottom of the image gives it just a little more color and solves the problem of having the large sandy ground around the lake.

For your chance to be featured in our next round-up, sign up to Lonely Planet Pathfinders – our programme for travel-loving bloggers and social content creators. In the meantime, you can get more Instagram inspiration by following @lonelyplanet.