The Best Pictures from National Geographic's 2015 Photo Contest

A collection of stunning images of people and places from all over the world

Each year, the National Geographic Photo Contest takes our breath away and 2015 is no exception. 

In the categories of People, Places and Nature, photographers share their favourite pictures and transport us to amazing locations and events all around the world.

Got a killer shot of your own? Entries are open until 16 November and can be submitted here

A Sandy Disguise by E. Kneler

"A line of elephants had just crossed the Chobe River on a hot day. As they relaxed by flicking cool sand on their backs, they were very aware to hide the youngest in the center of their grouping. For one moment though, this little one disguised in sand got through to give us a quick hello."

Alpenglow on the Minarets at Sunrise by Daiel Ochoa 

"The Minarets glow at sunrise as refracted light kisses the peaks with bright light. This was taken after a stormy night camping out at the Minaret Lakes. The transition from day to night is never disappointing in the High Sierra."

Jizo Bosatsu by Keith Tsuji 

"Many Jizo Bosatsu statues in red hat are seen in a national park in Japan. According to Japanese folk belief, red is the color for expelling demons and illness. Their roles are to save us from the demons of hell, to bring fertility, to protect children, therefore the Jizo is often dressed in red."

Here, humans are the minority... by Steffen Flugel 

"This was shot in South Georgia in December '14. It was probably the most intense moment of my whole trip to Antarctica - it's just overwhelming standing in there between hundreds of thousands of penguins - it's not a bad "minority feeling", but more of a peaceful reassurance that - at least in some places - our planet is still as beautiful as it was before mankind started having a go at it. THANK YOU to all those countries and individuals involved in keeping places like these intact!"

A little bit of Bear's Paradise by Kathleen Yap 

"I've loved watching wildlife documentaries since I was a kid. One of nature's wonders that fascinated me the most was the annual return of Salmon to their birthplace for spawning...and the bears that live off of this phenomenon. To be able to see it happen in real life was just completely magical and struck a chord deep within. There were about 12 bears at the falls, but 6 that dominated the prime spots. It was peaceful between the bears as there was plenty of salmon to go around!'

Measure Me by Matthew Draper

"A large, inquisitive and almost dangerously playful female Humpback whale calf measures me with her pectoral fin. This image was captured on a very wide fisheye lens, which doesn’t quite show how close she really is. By measuring how close I am she can determine if her tail is going to come in contact with me as she swims past."

Kelimutu lakes, Flores, Indonesia by Romulo Rejon 

"During our trip to Indonesia, we woke up early several times to try to see the sunrise over the island of Java... In vain. When we arrived to Flores island, we woke up at 3:30 a.m --not very confident about the weather, started hiking in the dark up to Kelimutu lakes and arrived at the top just when the night was about to welcome the day. A fabulous moment."






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