I am fortunate in so far as I travel for my primary job. My passion is photography. My job pays the bills. I have my own business so I have a lot of flexibility of where I go. I travel throughout the United States, including Hawaii and Puerto Rico. I have also done a lot of business in Canada, from British Columbia to Newfoundland. If it is particularly a special area for photographic opportunities, I will take the extra time for exploring. I have also taken several short trips to other countries, like Belize, Guatemala and Iceland. My bucket list keeps on growing.
Taking a tour is a great opportunity for seeing places that would be otherwise difficult to access. Now, my body form restricts me from taking long and difficult hiking trails to reach a spectacular photographic destination. I’ve taken two helicopter tours- one around the Island of Oahu and one around the Big lsland of Hawaii. In both tours, the pilot took a counterclockwise direction around the islands. On the first tour, I sat on the left side of the helicopter and had a great view of Oahu. On the second trip, I was forced to sit on the right side of the helicopter. I had a great view of the Pacific Ocean. Very disappointing. Bus tours can be an opportunity for photographing sites but seat position can be important as I learned on the Maui Road to Hana bus tour. I sat on the right side (no choice) and got a close up view of the side of the mountain. With bus tours, you are time limited at each stop, restricting your ability to take some serious photographing. However, I had one of the most incredible experiences of my life by taking a boat tour of the lava flow into the ocean off the south coast of the Big Island of Hawaii. The challenge was low light and heavy swells. The boat came within feet of the lava and moved back and forth in front of the action so there were plenty of opportunities for taking good shots. For this tour, I recommend bringing a good camera and plenty of Dramamine.