As you might have already guessed, photography is one of the major motivations why I travel. I enjoy sharing photos of beautiful places and capturing moments for my personal pleasure.

How I pack generally revolves around my camera gears, which occupy half the weight and size of what I carry inside my backpack.

Here’s a list of the camera gears I bring while I’m on the road and some details/reviews behind my choices:

Camera + Tripod set-up at Biri Rock Formations, Northern Samar, Philippines

DSLR Camera

In as much as I want to take the highest quality photos, which usually means expensive cameras and lenses, I also consider its affordability and the convenience of lugging it around everywhere I go.

DSLR cameras offer a significantly better image quality compared to compact cameras. Mirrorless micro four-third systems weren’t in the market when I made my purchase, so getting a DSLR was the obvious choice.

I currently use a Nikon D5000. I bought it because of its vari-angle LCD, which gives me more creative flexibility when composing photos. My camera  already looks battered down after 2 years of constant use (or abuse, rather). If I had extra money, Nikon D5100 would be a good replacement.

Among DSLRs, Nikon D5000 and D5100 are lightweight and affordable. I’m satisfied with the image quality, especially since I mainly use my photos for my travel blogging and social media uploads.


I carry two lenses, a superzoom and an ultra wide angle.

A superzoom lens covers a large zoom rage, which makes it a good walk-around lens. This type of lens doesn’t take the best image quality but offers convenience of carrying less number of lenses and not having to change them frequently.

I use a Sigma 18-250mm f/3.5-6.3 DC OS HSM. Honestly, I’m a bit disappointed with the performance of this lens especially when using longer zooms (focal length). Images are too soft and the focus motor is too shaky. It is however, more affordable than its Nikon counterpart, and takes decent wide angle shots. I’m considering replacing this lens with a Nikon 18-200mm or Nikon 18-300mm.

Ultra Wide Angle lenses (UWA) are a excellent lenses for people who love to take landscape and indoor shots. It took me a while before buying my Nikkor 10-24mm because UWA lenses are expensive. Image quality is remarkably better than my previous lenses and I am in love with how much of the view it can capture in a single frame.

My advice for those who are in the market for their first DSLR, consider buying the cheapest model (body only) then use the extra cash to buy a lens with a longer zoom than the 18-55mm kit lens. My first DSLR camera was a Nikon D40 with 18-105mm VR Nikkor lens. The longer zoom offers more versatile creative options than the limited range on the kit lens. Later on, you’ll get better perspective on what second lens by to buy by learning what kind of shots you enjoy: Landscape, Portraits, Macro, etc…

Compact Camera

For the times when I don’t want to carry a bulky and weavy DSLR around all day, I have my Samsung EX1. This premium compact camera has also a vari-angle LCD, manual controls, maximum 1.8 aperture, can take RAW photos. Samsung already released a successor to this camera with the Samsung EX2f.

Lens Filters

Circular Polarizing (CPL) Filter is one of the most useful camera accessory for outdoor photographers.  It helps to minimize water reflections and deepen the blue color of the sky.

Previously, I used Hoya brand of lens filters since they are best known for quality. Unfortunately, I’ve broken all of my Hoya CPL filters because they seem to have the uncanny ability to slip out of my fingers. They crack easily even from a few feet drop. I’m now using Phottix filters because of the more durable build, excellent polarizing effect, and slim design. I also still use my Sunpack filters. They’re cheap, though they’re not as good at polarizing as Hoya or Phottix.

Neutral Density (ND) Filters can enhance the silky smooth effect of flowing water, like in waterfall and beach shots. I use ND8 and ND400 Hoya/Marumi filters.

More accessories


  • Mirrorless Micro Four-thirds camera
  • More ND Filters, especially graduated variations
  • GPS device for easy geotagging

I bought my camera equipment mostly from Quiapo camera stores, online camera shops, or various photo shops in Iloilo or Metro Manila.