Forget Instagram and leave your VSCO filters at the door: these are the world’s best destinations for photographers who mean business.

1. Andalusia, Spain

There’s something about those rolling hills, echoed in that curvaceous Moorish architecture which is so compelling. In summer you can’t beat the yellow dust sparkling gold as it mingles with what sun-dried greenery still remains – it’s even better when kicked up by gallivanting wild horses.

2. Fogo Island, Canada

It’s not an overpowering landscape, but the stilted houses that perch between the rocks provide endless stimulus. For a photographer, the editing process can be a bit challenging – there are almost too many angles from which shots look spectacular.

3. Marrakech, Morocco

Marrakech is a photographer’s dream. It has everything going for it: elegant shadows carved by sweeping arches and intricate Islamic windows; an ever-shifting mosaic of jewel-toned tiles; an endless thoroughfare of interesting faces; and a handful of architectural styles all layered on top of one another.

4. Iceland

It’s so often used as a backdrop for adventure-photography shoots, and with good reason. It’s a country of severe contrasts, one with both sky-high mountains and sprawling black beaches. In summer it’s all felty and covered with lush green fuzz, come winter it’s glossed over by ice.

5. Valley of the Gods, Utah, US

It’s unlikely that you’ll encounter any wayward wanderers ruining the vistas here. It’s like shooting on Mars, though marginally cooler and with a far higher survival rate. Everything in this surreal, fiery-red landscape looks like it’s been recently scorched.

6. Lofoten Islands, Norway

It’s a rambunctious, rocky landscape which bathes in teal waters: real Scandinavia. The fishing villages speckled throughout are gold mines for nosey photographers – their weather-hardened fisherfolk make for magnificent portrait subjects.

7. Mongolia

Photographs taken here could date from any point over the past century – you’ll encounter wrestling, archery and bareback horse-racing competitions all undertaken in painstakingly handmade costumes. It feels like the land that time forgot.

8. Madagascar

As a photographer, the difficulty here is avoiding tropical-island clichés (and keeping your equipment dry). It spoils the lens with its juicy rainforests and almost luminescent beaches, which are staggered with dusky-coloured fishing huts.

9. Havana, Cuba

With those signature classic cars, the florid colonial buildings and its smattering of art-deco 1920s edifices, this city has an unavoidable pull for fans of retro styling. It’s all about faded glamour here – expect once glorious, now crumbly, facades and flaky paintwork.

10. Kamchatka Peninsula, Russia

This vast peninsula in the Russian Far East is a moody wilderness lacerated by icy streams and punctured with grumbling volcanoes smothered by smoky clouds. Those with enough patience might snap some wild bears – just watch your back as you go.

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