Choosing the Best 35mm Travel Lens

Travel Kits

Lowepro Nova 5
Lowepro Nova 5 This bag Dimensions are 8.5H x 14W x 6D

As I started to write about the best travel lens it occurred to me that there was more than just lenses Travel photography involves capturing images of a particular landscape or even people from different countries. A photographer who is dedicated to this type of photography captures various traditions and customs of a place. As always when away from home weight is a huge consideration. Here's the kit that I take.

Camera Bag - My personal preference is if I am traveling with my DSLR camera and several lenses, filters, flash, etc then I want something that is reasonably sizable like the Lowepro Nova 5. I personally do not like backpacks, but they might be an option for you, although they harder to gain access for quick lens changes. There are also sling bags which are more accessible but not as good for your back. I have two shoulder bags (a roomy Lowepro shown at the right and a smaller one that holds a DSLR and one or two lenses, plus a few filters). Depending upon the trip, I use one or both of the two bags.Bbe sure to pick a bag that fits everything in and that is comfortable. Also consider how weather proof the bag is as well as how much it looks like a camera bag (which makes it a target for thieves). I almost always take both bags - one to transport my gear with on travel days (which becomes hand luggage on a plane) and the second one which I use daily for taking what I need for the day (smaller and lighter). There is no such thing as the perfect bag or combination (I have searched!) - if you know of such a bag, please let me know.

Sigma 18-200mm f3.5-6.3 DC OS HSM Lens. it weighs 16.35 oz
Sigma 18-200mm f3.5-6.3 DC OS HSM Lens
it weighs 16.35 oz.

AF NIKKOR 50mm f/1.8D. It weighs just 5.5 ounces and fits in my pocket
AF NIKKOR 50mm f/1.8D.

It weighs just 5.5 ounces and fits in my pocket.

Camera and Lens Cleaning - I generally take some basic cleaning items including a lens cloth, a cloth for wiping down the outside of the camera and a bulb blower. I clean the outside of my camera and itís lenses and filters while on the traveling, but. I donít clean my own image sensor (I leave the sensor cleaning to Professional technician for that part of my camera).

Flash - an external flash unit is practically a necessity while travelling although they are one more thing added to the weight of your kit (and youíll also need more batteries for the flash. The results from using a dedicated flash that can swivel, bounce and with manual controls are worth the extra weight over the built in on-camera flash. Because of the added weight, I generally keep it in the transport bag unless itís nighttime or if I know ahead of time that Iíll going to need it.

Memory Cards - The days of having to haul truckloads of film around are gone. But taking careful consideration to the way images are stored while traveling rates some careful thought. Memory cards are made in a large variety of capacities in most cases all the way from small cards (my first camera came with a 16MB card) through gigantic cards with gigabytes of memory. It is tempting just to Best Prices for the largest size available but there are risks to this approach. What if the card becomes damaged, what if itís stolen, what if you lose it? Literally hundreds of hotos could be lost unless there is a backup plan. The options for avoiding such a loss are numerous. I know of people who do everything from sending images home via email (I can't even to begin to imagine the bandwidth) to backing up photos on their iPods, to using multiple memory cards so if they lose one theyíll still have some photos from their trip. Whatever your strategy is, youíll need to pack the gear decided upon.


1.5X teleconverters are more useful and often have less distortion than 2X teleconverters. With a 1.5X teleconverter, you lose a stop of light. So a my 18-200mm lens becomes the equivalent of a 27mm-300mm  equivalent lens. This gives me an extra 100mm with only the added weight of 3.9 ounces.
Kenko 1.5X teleconverter
Kenko 1.5X teleconverter
for the long end of the Sigma 18-200

Tripod - I usually do not travel with a tripod or monopod since I got the 18-200 stabilized lens (although have a couple of times when I was traveling by car and not flying). Instead if shooting in low light with a flash I like to find available support, use my camera bag or find other stationary objects along the way to support the weight of my camera. Some use the mini tripods that are all the rage these days, but they are better with smaller point and shoot cameras than larger and heavier DSLRs.

Compact Point & Shoot Camera. Although I am a DSLR user, I like to pack a compact point and shoot camera as well. This is for those nights when I go into town and don’t want to haul all my gear around with me but want to record the night. The Canon g15 - fits in my pocket and weighs just over 4 ounces

Extra Batteries - depending upon how many shots you take in per day I find that most digital cameras these days do not run out of battery power in a days worth of shooting. However it is important to have extra batteries for those long days and days when you forgot to recharge your batteries the night before. Some point and shoot cameras will take AA (or different standard size) batteries but you should investin in a couple of sets of rechargeable batteries and a fast charger. Youíll end up saving money over the long run with them and the rechargeable ones deliver more power through the battery charge life.

ē Battery Charger - when you have rechargeable batteries, remember to have a way to recharge them.

ē Power Source - if youíre traveling out of the country do some research on what the power sources they have and on what type of adapter plugs youíll need. Travel stores will be able to help you up with the right adapters.

All-in-one travel lenses

External Links

Facebook Comments