One and Done: These Zooms Are Perfect for Travel Photography

If you want to travel light, you need to check out these lenses that are perfect for travel photography.

With things starting to ease up a little regarding COVID, many people will start traveling again. That’s something we’re all ready for, but are you ready for it from a photography standpoint? When traveling, keeping your kit as light as possible is a must. Sure, it can be cool to take a half dozen lenses with you, but you’ll soon get tired of carrying so much gear. The answer is to have one lens that can do it all: one lens that can shoot wide to telephoto within a blink of an eye. The lenses we have rounded up after the break are perfect for travel photography due to their versatility, excellent optics, great builds, and price points. If you want one lens to take with you on your travels, take a look at these options after the break.

Fujifilm XF 18-135mm f3.5-5.6 R LM OIS WR

travel photography

In our review, we said:

“The lens perfectly slots into a long-vacant gap within Fujifilm’s X-series lens lineup as a jack-of-all-trades tool for tourists on vacation to journalists in need of a flexible lens for events. It’s not designed to excel in any particular field like the sports shooting XF50-140mm f2.8 or architectural wide-angle XF10-24mm f4, but it’s more than decent for capturing any type of photo you need.”

travel photography
travel lenses

Buy now: $729

Sony 18-135mm f3.5-5.6 OSS (APS-C)

travel photography

In our review, we said:

“Besides watching out for the AF/MF switch on the side, photographers won’t really have a whole lot to worry about with the Sony 18-135mm f3.5-5.6 OSS. It’s easy to use, and you just need to point it, focus and shoot. I put it in the hands of a few folks who knew nothing about photography, and they were easily able to take a good photo.”

Chris Gampat – Editor In Chief
travel photography

Buy now: $548

Pro Tip: Traveling light is fantastic, but you need to make sure your camera bag is TSA compliant or you’ll be putting your gear in the hold. Make sure that doesn’t happen by getting a TSA-compliant camera bag. We have reviewed many camera bags over the years. Head on over to our reviews index to take a look at bags like the Tenba DNA 15 messenger and more. Grab one and make sure your travel photography plans don’t get put on hold.

Tamron 28-200mm f2.8-5.6 Di III RXD

travel photography

In our review, we said:

“Does it specialize in anything in particular? No. But it’s more than good enough to do almost any job you need with the right add ons like a flash or a tripod. It’s also weather-sealed, lightweight, and small. The only caveat is the lack of image stabilization. But overall, it’s hard to find a significant fault with the Tamron 28-200mm f2.8-5.6 Di III RXD.”

Chris Gampat – Editor In Chief
travel photography

Buy now: $729

Sony 24-240mm f3.5-6.3

travel photography

In our review, we said:

“What we were most impressed by with this lens is the sharpness. It’s surprisingly sharp, and even though our images looked pretty amazing on the LCD screen of the camera, they had me looking twice and cleaning my glasses to ensure that I wasn’t seeing things. This lens is damn sharp–not as sharp as the prime lenses but for what you’re getting, you can’t really complain.”

travel photography
travel lenses

Buy now: $948

Olympus 12-100mm f4 PRO

travel photography

In our review, we said:

“There honestly isn’t a single fault or problem I can really talk about with the Olympus 12-100mm f4 Pro that can’t be fixed in post-production. It’s a great walkaround and photojournalism lens. To that end, I recommend it to a lot of photographers. For $1,299, you’re getting a lens that can handle most situations: studio shooting, walkabout work, weddings, wildlife, etc. Olympus made a big deal about it for great reasons.”

Chris Gampat – Editor In Chief
travel photography

Buy now: $1,299

Brett Day

Brett Day is the Gear Editor at The Phoblographer and has been a photographer for as long as he can remember. Brett has his own photography business that focuses on corporate events and portraiture. In his spare time, Brett loves to practice landscape and wildlife photography. When he's not behind a camera, he's enjoying life with his wife and two kids, or he's playing video games, drinking coffee, and eating Cheetos.