x Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 27 July 2017

Travel deals: photography holidays

Polish your photography skills on one of these trips to India, Spain, Finland or Cambodia.

Tea plantations on the lower slopes of the Western Ghats in Kerala, southern India. Getty Images / Gallo Images
Tea plantations on the lower slopes of the Western Ghats in Kerala, southern India. Getty Images / Gallo Images

Kerala, India

Leave next month for India's beautiful south on a 13-day journey through the state of Kerala. The new 2012 itinerary from Wild Photography Holidays features the services of an experienced photographer and guide, taking visitors through Cochin, with its Portuguese houses, synagogues and forts; the tea plantations, granite-domed mountains, spice gardens and wildlife reserves of the Western Ghats; a traditional Kathakali (classical dance) performance in a village and the opportunity to photograph the dancers as they go about their elaborate make-up routine; and a leisurely houseboat cruise on the lagoons and backwaters that Kerala is famous for. There is also the opportunity to book a two-day extension on Kovalam Beach, with accommodation in the traditionally styled Tranvacore Heritage, a hotel with a private stretch of pristine beach and an Ayurveda spa.

The two-week trip costs from £2,150 (Dh12,333) per person, including hotel accommodation, guides, transport in air-conditioned vehicles, most meals, a tour of Cochin by rickshaw, a private Kathakali performance, one-on-one tuition, image developing, and all entrance and camera fees. International airfare is not included. Visit www.wildphotographyholidays.com.

Andalucia, Spain

This four-day walking and photography holiday around the scenic Parque Natural Sierra Maria-Los Velez in Andalucia includes accommodation in a luxury eco-retreat high in the mountains. The surrounding hiking trails cut through the pine forests around the Maria, a limestone outcrop that stands 2,045 metres high, and lead to caves with paintings that date back to 4,000 BC.

The land-only trip costs from £475 (Dh2,725) per person for four days, full board, including accommodation, two full-day walking and photography expeditions with tuition from an experienced photographer and ecologist, the services of a guide on all walking trips, local transport and taxes. The course is suitable for photographers of all abilities. For details, visit www.golearnto.com.

Vietnam and Cambodia

From the night markets of Siem Reap to the temples of Angkor, this comprehensive journey takes in all the top spots in Vietnam and Cambodia, perfect for photography enthusiasts of all levels. Highlights include a lake cruise and tours of Phnom Penh and the old town in Hoi An.

From US$2,960 (Dh10,873) for a 12-day trip that includes photo critique sessions and photography workshops, entrance fees to sites listed on the itinerary, the services of local guides, luxury accommodation, most meals, domestic flights, all transport (including a night on a sleeper train) and private cruises on the Tonle Sap and Hoi An River. International flights not included. Visit vietnamphototours.com to book.

Finland

Stay in a lodge on the shores of Lake Lammasjarvi near Kuhmo on this four-day trip and head out on all-day photography excursions led by the Finnish nature photographer and writer Antti Leionen. Cross Lake Venejarvi in a tandem canoe; hike to Petola Nature Centre for a tour of the "Predators on the Prowl" exhibition that features bears, wolverines and lynxes; and travel to eastern Finland, close to the Russian border, to the Boreal Wildlife Centre for a night in a (comfortable) bear hide.

From £799 (Dh4,583) per person for four days, including accommodation, most meals, transport by minibus and canoe. International flights not included. Departures in spring. Visit www.exodus.co.uk.

travel@thenational.ae