Looking for the best travel cameras you can buy? As travel restrictions are starting to ease in some countries, you may want to consider going on vacation. And you may also be thinking about the best way to capture your vacation. The good news is that we’ve carefully tested the best cameras for each type of traveler. You’re sure to find the camera that’s right for you in the comprehensive list below.
Whether you’re looking for a relaxing vacation or a trip to a sunny spot, there’s a lot to consider when choosing the perfect travel camera. To find the right model, you need to think about where you’re going, what you’re going to photograph, and how you like to film. If your travels take you to a wilderness location, for example, you’ll probably want to have a long zoom lens. Do you photograph from the hip during a city break? A large sensor and a fast lens make more sense.
Another important factor is whether you will stick to photos or whether you also want to record videos. Also, if you want to quickly share your latest shots on social media, you’ll need a camera with good connectivity.
Best Travel Cameras
So whether you want a functional compact to slip into your carry-on luggage or something larger for premium vacation photos, we’ve got a list of the best travel cameras.
1. Olympus OM-D E-M1 Mark III
If anyone thought that Olympus couldn’t compete on the professional stage, the OM-D E-M1 Mark III did put them in their place. There are many specialized cameras that can do a variety of things better than the E-M1 Mark III, it’s fair to say. However, there are very few that can do everything they can do. If you’re a professional who shoots a lot of different types of images and is in a lot of different shooting situations, it’s a surprisingly good choice.
Image stabilization in 7.5 steps, the best in the business? Check it out. Continuous burst shooting at 60 frames per second? It’s a sure thing. High-resolution shooting at 80MP? Yes, it does. Let’s imagine a hypothetical day of photography: you get up early and crawl up a hill to photograph a beautiful landscape in the morning light, using enough megapixels to get a beautiful print. You then head to a sporting event to take fast-action photos, requiring both a fast burst speed and a tracking AF system. Overall, this is one of the best travel cameras.
2. Panasonic Lumix GX85
Incredibly good value for money, with or without its small 12-32 mm zoom kit, the Panasonic Lumix GX85/G80 incorporates a host of high-tech features in its compact size. These include 5-axis image stabilization, light speed AF, post-focusing, and ultra-high-definition 4K for photos and videos, just like Panasonic’s high-end cameras. A high-resolution electronic viewfinder is also integrated on the back of the camera, as well as a tilting touch screen. If you want a camera that offers many features and performance but is small in size and reasonably priced, this is the ideal choice. It’s a great camera for traveling, and its price also makes it great for beginners. Overall, this is one of the best travel cameras.
3. Canon EOS Rebel SL3
Canon manufactures a few cheaper DSLRs than this one, including the 18-megapixel EOS 4000D and the 24-megapixel EOS 2000D, but we think they are too small in terms of functionality and build quality and recommend paying a small surcharge for the EOS Rebel SL3 DSLR (sold as the EOS 250D in Europe). Why is this? Because it has a variable-angle touch screen on the back and a sensor with Canon’s dual-pixel AF CMOS technology, so real-world autofocus is really fast.
We also like the fact that you can start with a simple guided user interface while you’re still learning, and then switch to the standard setup when you feel more confident and want more control. The Rebel SL3 / EOS 250D replaces Canon’s previous Rebel SL2/EOS 200D, adding 4K video and better autofocus in live view. It’s a DSLR that can beat mirrorless cameras at their own game! Overall, this is one of the best travel cameras.
4. Nikon D3500
While you’re still learning and deciding what type of device is best for you, choose a device that’s simple enough to understand right away and affordable enough that you can change your mind and change it later if you decide you need something different. The D3500 is the entry-level model in Nikon’s DSLR lineup, but it has a 24.2MP sensor that is as good as a camera at twice the price, and it offers a very good continuous shooting speed of 5 fps for a beginner’s camera.
The Guide mode will help beginners get started and understand the basics, but the D3500 has all the manual controls you need to become familiar with photography while improving your skills. It sometimes comes a little cheaper with a non-VR (unstabilized) kit lens, but it’s certainly worth paying a little more for the VR version. Overall, this is one of the best travel cameras.
5. Fujifilm X-T200
We loved the Fujifilm X-T100 because it offered sophisticated handling, all the manual control you’d expect, and a viewfinder of a satisfactory size. And now the X-T200 is here, and it raises the stakes with a large variable angle touch screen, much better 4K video functions and improved autofocus. Fujifilm is aimed at first-time users, but this camera is powerful enough to give mid-range DSLRs and mirrorless cameras something to think about.
As you can see, we really like the X-T200, but for now it’s brand new and still available at its high introductory price. So it’s not much cheaper than the more advanced Fujifilm X-T30, which has been around for a while. But once the prices are set, we think the Fujifilm X-T200 will be a real winner. Overall, this is one of the best travel cameras.
6. Panasonic Lumix ZS200
If you’re going on a trip, the last thing you want is to be weighed down by a kit – but at the same time you’ll want a camera that can capture any kind of subject and come as close as possible to the quality of a “good” camera. That’s what the best long zoom travel compact cameras do, and the ZS200 is right at the top of the tree. The ZS200 has a 20 megapixel 1-inch sensor, like most of the best compact cameras, but it comes with a 15x long zoom lens. This provides a 24mm wide-angle view up to the equivalent 360mm long-range telephoto lens.
The ZS200 produce excellent JPEG images directly from the camera and have the ability to take photos and 4K video in raw mode. A macro mode allows you to focus on subjects as close as 3 cm away, and Panasonic’s 4K photo mode can generate 8K images from burst footage shot at 30 frames per second. With 4K photo mode, you can even choose your focus point AFTER taking the picture. It’s the best travel camera for those who want quality and versatility, but without the hassle of interchangeable lenses. Overall, this is one of the best travel cameras.
7. Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark III
The Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark III is an exceptional camera and a worthy successor to the highly acclaimed Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark II. This new camera uses the latest 20.4 megapixels Micro Four Thirds sensor from Olympus, and although this may put off some people – these sensors are smaller than the APS-C – the image quality is very close, and this makes Olympus cameras and lenses particularly small and portable.
The capabilities of this new camera are astonishing, including excellent 5.5 EV body stabilization, an amazing 30fps Pro Capture mode with 14-frame pre-buffering, C4K, and 4K UHD video, Live Composite and Live Bulb modes, and much more. Overall, this is one of the best travel cameras.
8. Sony Cyber-shot RX100 VII
It’s crazy to think that this is the seventh iteration of Sony’s RX100 series, but when you consider the popularity of this line over the years, it’s perhaps not hard to understand why. These models are traditionally very expensive but give you the best picture quality you can put in a pocket. The last two versions of the RX100 have seen a longer lens than ever – and the same goes for the RX100 VII, with a 24-200mm lens reappearing from the RX100 VI.
We also have a tilting touch screen, as well as an electronic viewfinder that can be inserted into the camera body for better readability when you don’t need it. Sony likes to show exactly what it can do with its latest technology, and to that end, we have an amazingly ridiculous 90 fps burst speed (a much more reasonable 20 fps gives you full AF/AE tracking). Other improvements have been made in the form of video performance modifications, including the addition of a microphone input jack. Overall, this is one of the best travel cameras.
9. Fujifilm X-T30
The X-T30 has the second-highest resolution APS-C sensor on the market today (beaten only by the 32.5MP Canon EOS M6 Mark II) and one of the most sophisticated autofocus systems available. The X-T30 combines a compact body, affordable price, and powerful photographic tools. It’s small, portable, and easy to use, but with 4K video and its external shutter speed and aperture controls, it’s a great buy for video enthusiasts and ordinary photo photographers. The video features of the X-T4 (below) are a little better, and some may find the X-T30’s body a little too small, but we think its mix of size, value, and performance makes the X-T30 one of the best travel cameras on the market.
10. Nikon Z50
This is a closer match between this model and the Fujifilm X-T30, above, but we believe the X-T30’s wider lens range is the deciding factor. The Nikon Z 50 was launched in late 2019, joining Nikon’s more advanced Z 6 and Z full-frame models. But the Z50 soon proved to be much more than just a stripped-down version of these large cameras. Many specs make it one of the best travel cameras that you can buy.
Nikon succeeded in making the small frame a satisfying grip for better handling while including 11-frame/second burst shooting for action photography and high-quality 4K video. Best of all is the superb 16-50mm crepe kit lens available in the kit, and the price, which has clearly been specifically designed to be lower than similar offerings from Fujifilm and Olympus. The Z 50 is a superb yet affordable camera for a wide range of photographers at all levels.
11. Sony Cyber-shot RX10 IV
If your budget allows it, the RX10 IV is undoubtedly the best bridge camera currently available on the market – and not only from Sony. You have a zoom equivalent to 24-600 mm, coupled with a large, high-performance one-inch sensor. The installation is quite cumbersome but compared to carrying a camera and a set of lenses, it’s a decent option for photographers on the go who need something for all kinds of situations. In addition to fantastic photo quality, you also get great video recording.
In addition, you get a touch screen, an excellent viewfinder, and a very good grip. The 5-axis image stabilization is very handy when using a long lens, but there is a slight vignetting at the end of the frame. It is possible to take pictures in raw or JPEG format, while a full range of shooting options is available for enthusiastic photographers. Bulky and expensive – yes – but sometimes you get your money’s worth. Overall, this is one of the best travel cameras right now.
12. Canon PowerShot G9 X Mark II
Featuring a large sensor inside a slim shell, the PowerShot G9 X Mark II exceeds expectations. Key features include a larger-than-average sensor size of 1 in 20.1 MP and aluminum construction that Canon says is 25% thinner than the previous version, as well as continuous shooting speeds of up to 8.2 frames per second (thanks, in part, to a DIGIC 7 processor). If you’re looking for a compact, sleek and easy-to-use camera that produces images that are far superior in quality to your smartphone, the PowerShot G9 X Mark II is a first-rate choice. Overall, this is one of the best travel cameras.
13. Olympus TG-6
At first glance, the TG-6 Olympus Tough seems inseparable from its predecessor, the TG-5. However, with a display that has twice the resolution, high-speed video options, and a new underwater mode, the TG-6 has some interesting new features. They may not justify an upgrade if you already own the TG-5, but if you have an old Tough or if you are looking for an outdoor camera that can go into the sea, get covered in sand, be laid on concrete, and take pictures and videos even in freezing temperatures, this is one of the best travel cameras.