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Photo Competition 2018 Winners

As another year draws to an end, here in the Goyo Travel offices we have been busy sifting through hundreds of photos our clients have sent in from their trips with us in 2018. It is never easy picking the best, but after much deliberation we have this year’s lucky winners. Thank you to everyone who sent in their fantastic photos, we’ve loved seeing them all.


3rd Place: “Resting Camels”  by Megan Skeels

In third place is this beautiful image of camels taking a rest in the Gobi Desert. Megan is an expat living in Qatar, originally from Canada, who loves to travel and share her experiences through her photography. Having travelled to almost 50 countries, Megan loves to immerse herself in local cultures, breaking down any perceived barriers and leaving her guides as cherished friends. Here is what she had to say about her photo:

“This photo was taken on one of our favourite days while we were in Mongolia. We drove the short drive from our ger camp in Gobi to a local family where we had milk tea and our camel ride. Riding the two humped camels was high on my list during our trip but I did not expect to have such a memorable experience. During the ride our local guide, the daughter of the family, started to sing traditional songs. Her voice and the way it almost sang like the wind would give you goose bumps. It was enchanting. We rode across the sand to the dunes where we stopped for a rest, and where I took this picture. I smile when I think of this moment. The opportunity to learn about their life is just so rewarding. It’s funny how a simple photo of our camels can bring back such an amazing day.”

Why did we pick this photo?

Camels are a popular choice for photographers, whether it’s a shot of them during a ride, stood by a ger, being transported in a flat-bed truck or by the dunes. What stood out to us with this was the more relaxing nature of the photo. The camels sat down with the photo taken at eye level, the detail of the ripples in the sand, and the contrast of the golden sand and camels to the colourful, hand-made saddles. Congratulations Megan – you are the recipient of some ger-embroided Mongolian table mats!


2nd Place: “Mongolian Horse Catchers”  by Pascal Thomas

In second place is this fantastic shot of horse tamers riding in to the distance. Pascal is a keen traveller and amateur photographer from Belgium, who loves capturing beautiful landscapes and wildlife. Here is what he had to say about this brilliant photo:

“It was my first trip to Mongolia together with my family and we spent a week in Mongolia together with our guide and excellent driver ’Mega’. We were heading back to the airport after a stay at Sweet Gobi Ger Camp. That’s when driver Mega spotted the Mongolian horse catchers riding in the fields. We stopped a bit further down the road, ran in to the fields and I quickly took some snapshots when they stopped for a moment. I think this picture represents well the horse culture and the beautiful landscapes of Mongolia and I’m glad I could capture this beautiful encounter.”

Why did we pick this photo?

We don’t get many photos of horse tamers sent to us, which really drew our attention to this photo, capturing a more unique practise carried out in Mongolia. We loved this photo due it’s strong colours of traditional Mongolian clothing, the rustic authenticity of traditional horse catching poles, and the intrigue in to the adventure that these tamers were embarking on, as they ride into the vast central Steppe. Congratulations Pascal – with second place you will be receiving a traditional Kazakh wall hanging!


1st Place: “Saddling Horses at the Yak Herders Ger”  by Peter Kennington

This year’s winning photo belongs to Peter Kennington. Peter is a retired freelance project estimator from the UK. Travel photography has played an important part of his life, and over the past 50 years he has travelled to some of the world’s remotest and highest mountain ranges for months at a time. Here’s what he had to say about his photo and his time in Mongolia:

“I particularly enjoy capturing images of people going about their daily life unaware of my presence and by sharing my photos, hope to inspire others to get out and see how others live. This photo was taken on day 8 of the 3 week tour excellently organised by the team at Goyo. We were visiting Tovkhon Monastery but were invited to lunch at a local yak herders ger. The owners kindly offered to saddle some horses for those not wishing to make the steep climb up the mountain.

My inspiration for visiting Mongolia was the film “The Eagle Huntress”. The Altai Eagle Festival was the highlight of the trip and especially the opportunity to meet Aisholpan and the Kazakh hunters. In the 3 weeks in Mongolia I realised the country had so much more to offer and I was impressed by the friendliness of the people, the immense space, the history and the magnificent scenery.”

Why did we pick this photo?

We receive an abundance of photos of Mongolian people and their gers, which made this photo even more special when it stood out from the crowd. As well as many other brilliant photos from Peter, he really managed to capture so much in one shot. Unlike many portrait photos we see, this image captured the head of the family in action saddling up his horse, an everyday task for many Mongolians. We also loved the dramatic skyline above the steep, rolling hills. This photo captured everything we love about Mongolia: friendly faces, nomadic lifestyle, affection for horses, and beautiful yet dramatic landscapes in one of the most remote countries on earth. Congratulations Peter – with our winning photo of the year, the intricately made Mongolian felt rug is yours!