Winners and Honorable Mentions of the 2017 National Geographic Travel Photographer of the Year

National Geographic just announced the winners and honorable mentions of the 2017 National Geographic Travel Photographer of the Year. The dramatic winning photo of a lightning bolt flashing atop the Colima Volcano in Mexico was captured by Sergio Tapiro Velasco. The awards and honorable mentions are defined across three categories: Nature, People, and Cities. Collected here are 10 of our favorites images, but can you see the rest on National Geographic.

The Power of Nature •• Photo and Caption by Sergio Tapiro Velasco Powerful eruption of Colima Volcano in Mexico on december 13th, 2015. That night, the weather was dry and cold, friction of ash particles generated a big lightning of about 600 meters that connected ash and volcano, and illuminated most of the dark scene. On last part of 2015, this volcano showed a lot of eruptive activity with ash explosions that raised 2-3 km above the crater. Most of night explosions produced incandescent rockfalls and lightnings not bigger than 100 meters in average.

The Power of Nature •• Photo and Caption by Sergio Tapiro Velasco

Powerful eruption of Colima Volcano in Mexico on december 13th, 2015. That night, the weather was dry and cold, friction of ash particles generated a big lightning of about 600 meters that connected ash and volcano, and illuminated most of the dark scene. On last part of 2015, this volcano showed a lot of eruptive activity with ash explosions that raised 2-3 km above the crater. Most of night explosions produced incandescent rockfalls and lightnings not bigger than 100 meters in average.

To Live •• Photo and Caption by Hiromi Kano Swans who live vigorous even in mud. 

To Live •• Photo and Caption by Hiromi Kano

Swans who live vigorous even in mud. 

Marble Caves •• Photo and Caption by Plane Gessel The marble caves of Patagoina

Marble Caves •• Photo and Caption by Plane Gessel

The marble caves of Patagoina

MT. Bromo •• Photo and Caption by Reynold Dewantara Mount Bromo volcano is a small, but active volcanic cinder cone on Java, Indonesia. Early 2016, I happened to be in Mt Bromo during the increase of seismic activity and triggered the alert status to the second highest.

MT. Bromo •• Photo and Caption by Reynold Dewantara

Mount Bromo volcano is a small, but active volcanic cinder cone on Java, Indonesia. Early 2016, I happened to be in Mt Bromo during the increase of seismic activity and triggered the alert status to the second highest.

Workship •• Photo and Caption by F. Dilek Uyar Sema is part of the inspiration of Mevlana Celaleddin-i Rumi as well as of Turkish custom, history, beliefs and culture. It is what we do as a form of remembrance of God. Otherwise, the Sema ceremony represents a mystical journey of man's spiritual ascent through mind and love to "Perfect". Turning towards the truth, his growth through love, desert his ego, find the truth and arrive to the "Perfect", then he return from this spiritual journey as a man who reached maturity and a greater perfecti.

Workship •• Photo and Caption by F. Dilek Uyar

Sema is part of the inspiration of Mevlana Celaleddin-i Rumi as well as of Turkish custom, history, beliefs and culture. It is what we do as a form of remembrance of God. Otherwise, the Sema ceremony represents a mystical journey of man's spiritual ascent through mind and love to "Perfect". Turning towards the truth, his growth through love, desert his ego, find the truth and arrive to the "Perfect", then he return from this spiritual journey as a man who reached maturity and a greater perfecti.

Under the Wave •• Photo and Caption by Rodney Bursiel I recently traveled to Tavarua, Fiji to do some surf photography with pro surfer Donavon Frankenreiter at Cloudbreak. I'm always looking for new angles and perspectives. The usual surf shots have all been done so we decided to get a little creative. Makes you look twice.

Under the Wave •• Photo and Caption by Rodney Bursiel

I recently traveled to Tavarua, Fiji to do some surf photography with pro surfer Donavon Frankenreiter at Cloudbreak. I'm always looking for new angles and perspectives. The usual surf shots have all been done so we decided to get a little creative. Makes you look twice.

Levels of Reading •• Photo and Caption by Norbert Fritz The modern interior of the city library in Stuttgart. With its wide-open space in the central, where natural light comes from through the windows on the top, it has a very unique atmosphere, where you can broaden your knowledge.

Levels of Reading •• Photo and Caption by Norbert Fritz

The modern interior of the city library in Stuttgart. With its wide-open space in the central, where natural light comes from through the windows on the top, it has a very unique atmosphere, where you can broaden your knowledge.

Walled City #08 •• Photo and Caption by Andy Yeung The Kowloon Walled City was the densest place on Earth. Hundreds of houses stacked on top of each other enclosed in the center of the structure. Many didn’t have access to open space.This notorious city was finally demolished in 1990s. However, if you look hard enough, you will notice that the city is not dead. Part of it still exists in many of current high density housing apartments. I hope this series can get people to think about claustrophobic living in Hong Kong from a new perspective.

Walled City #08 •• Photo and Caption by Andy Yeung

The Kowloon Walled City was the densest place on Earth. Hundreds of houses stacked on top of each other enclosed in the center of the structure. Many didn’t have access to open space.This notorious city was finally demolished in 1990s. However, if you look hard enough, you will notice that the city is not dead. Part of it still exists in many of current high density housing apartments. I hope this series can get people to think about claustrophobic living in Hong Kong from a new perspective.

Al Ain •• Photo and Caption by Andrzej Bochenski  New city on the desert.

Al Ain •• Photo and Caption by Andrzej Bochenski 

New city on the desert.

Crocodiles at Rio Tarcoles •• Photo and Caption by Tarun Sinha This image was captured in Costa Rica when I was travelling from Monteverde to Playa Hermosa. As you cross over this river, you can stop and peer over the edge of the bridge. Below, reside over 35 gigantic crocodiles, relaxing on the muddy banks of the river. I wanted to capture the stark difference between the crocodiles on land and in the water. In the murky waters, the body contours of these beasts remain hidden, and one can only truly see their girth as they emerge from the river.

Crocodiles at Rio Tarcoles •• Photo and Caption by Tarun Sinha

This image was captured in Costa Rica when I was travelling from Monteverde to Playa Hermosa. As you cross over this river, you can stop and peer over the edge of the bridge. Below, reside over 35 gigantic crocodiles, relaxing on the muddy banks of the river. I wanted to capture the stark difference between the crocodiles on land and in the water. In the murky waters, the body contours of these beasts remain hidden, and one can only truly see their girth as they emerge from the river.