For photographers, having the right camera accessories can make a huge difference in capturing those perfect shots.
There is an abundance of travel photography gear available when it comes to finding just the right accessory for your camera. Whether you’re a beginner or professional photographer, having the right gear will help ensure that you get the most out of your photography experience.
As Photo Jeepers, we take photos as we travel in our Jeep! In this article, we’ll explore some of the essential camera accessories that every photographer should have on hand based on our experience taking landscape and wildlife photos over the years!
Check out and download the free camera gear checklist below to help you pack these camera accessories before heading out so you don’t forget anything important! (Yeah, we’ve been there, done that!)
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Where Should I Buy Camera Equipment?
We get all our Camera Equipment at B&H Photo! They are a reputable company that’s been in business for over 45 years. Their customer service and knowledge about photography equipment gives us peace of mind when spending money on higher ticket items like cameras, tripods and lenses.
We also use B&H Photo to buy our camera accessories like filters, memory cards, cleaning kits, portable hard drives, and more!
Best Camera Accessories List
Once you have your camera and lens(es), then it’s time to get the other photography equipment you’ll need for taking landscape and nature photos. Here’s the list of the accessories we use!
Camera Bags and Backpacks
A good camera bag or backpack is the foundation of any travel photographer’s kit. A well-designed bag that fits and carries well when touring and hiking is an essential camera accessory.
Be sure it’s equipped with pockets and flexible sections for organizing the gear you have!.
We use three sizes of camera backpacks depending on the type of photo excursion we’re doing:
Small Camera Backpacks: The smaller backpack is used if we know we’ll only need one camera and not a lot of extra supplies. This type of backpack usually holds one camera body, 3-4 lenses, and additional accessories. Small camera backpacks are also great for hiking!
Large Camera Backpacks: If we need to carry 2 cameras and/or large lenses, then we’ll use a larger backpack. Be sure to find a backpack with adjustable inserts to fit the camera and lenses you’ll need! The larger camera backpack isn’t too bad for hiking, but can get heavy for long distances.
Camera Bag for Travel: Then we have camera bags specifically for travel when we need to take all of our gear with us! These larger bags usually can hold two large cameras with 6-8 standard zoom lenses, 17″ laptop, and 600mm f/4 without hood unattached or a 500mm f/4 with body attached!!
Here’s a wonderful list of travel camera bags for women if you’re looking for something more specific for her!
A good sturdy tripod is at the top of our list of camera accessories! They are worth the investment and can make a tremendous difference in the sharpness of your photos.
There are many quality tripods of varying sizes and capacities. Evaluate your needs and spend the money to obtain a good quality tripod to meet those needs. It will definitely pay for itself in the quality of your images.
Compact & Lightweight Travel Tripods: Travel tripods are designed to be compact and lightweight. Many travel tripods fold up into a compact package that you can fit into a carry-on bag. They are also designed to be lighter than full-sized tripods.
Most lightweight travel tripods don’t extend to the same heights as full-sized tripods so you will need to bend over a bit while shooting.
Our Benro MeFOTO Carbon Fiber tripod is the perfect lightweight tripod for long hikes or when we won’t be using a large, heavy lens.
We LOVE the Peak Design Travel Tripod when weight and bulk really count! Watch the video to see why!
Tripods for Heavy Lenses: Solidly built tripods for heavy lenses will help you get sharper images when photographing in low light, capturing long exposures, panoramas, and panning shots.
Your ideal tripod should comfortably support at least 1.5 times the total weight of your heaviest lens and camera. While most of the high-quality tripods in the market will safely hold standard camera bodies, only a few can accommodate long telephoto lenses.
The Gitzo Systematic Series 5 Carbon Fiber Tripod is the Best of the Best when it comes to a tripod that can hold heavy lenses!!
Do you ever come across something that you want to photograph, but by the time you got your camera out of the bag, the moment is gone?
The camera clip by Peak Design is AMAZING! We were skeptical that it would hold our camera with a heavy lens, but it does.
It’s so nice to have the camera securely attached while touring or hiking – AND readily available for any photo opportunity when it comes along.
Camera Cleaning Kit and Lens Pen
The number one thing that ruins a good photo is a dirty lens! A quick field cleaning is sometimes necessary to remove dust or water droplets on your lens. NOTE: this is not for cleaning the sensor.
Camera cleaning kit: This kit should include a lens pen, cleaning fluid in a spray bottle, air blower, microfiber cleaning cloths and a soft brush.
Basic lens care kit: This kit is good for smaller cameras and smartphones.
Lens pen: This pen has two sides – one with a retractable goat hair brush to brush away any loose particles and the other side with a self-replenish able carbon-based tip to clean the lens.
Camera cleaning spray: We always have extra camera cleaning spray bottles at home and in all our camera bags. Look for cleaning fluid that’s alcohol-free, for all types of glass optics, and won’t strip the lens coating. Use the spray to remove dust and smudges!
Camera cleaning cloths: You can never have too many microfiber cleaning cloths! Be sure they are safe to use on camera lenses. We have a few in all our camera bags to use to remove dust or water drops from photographing waterfalls!
Camera Remote Shutter Release
A remote shutter release is fantastic for decreasing camera shake caused by the pressure of your finger activating the camera shutter. Using this camera accessory results in sharper images.
There are wired and wireless models available. You will need to search for a remote shutter release for your specific camera model or smartphone.
We use the remote shutter release for long exposure photography: rivers, waterfalls, astrophotography, or in low light conditions to avoid that extra movement of the camera.
Memory Cards, Card Cases and Card Readers
Memory Cards: Purchase a name brand like Lexar or SanDisk – after all, you are trusting your images to the card! You will use the card over and over, so spending a bit more to get a better product, in the long term, will not cost you much more.
CARRY EXTRAS: You don’t want to miss any photographic opportunities due to forgetting to load a memory card or filling a memory card (or two).
Memory Card Cases: You can choose from soft sided cases or hard sided cases. Look for a case that will hold the type of cards you have (SD, microSD) and the number of cards you have!
Card Readers: Look for a card reader that works with the type of cards you have. You also want it to have fast transfer speeds to save time when transferring large files. Also consider size – we have a large one for home use and a smaller one that’s portable to use when we travel.
Camera Batteries and Chargers
Always pack your camera charger and extra batteries. It’s not a good feeling when you forgot to put the battery in your camera or it’s been drained and you don’t have a back-up. We know this from experience, and want to save you the heartache!
Camera batteries: Be sure to find the right camera battery for your specific camera! There are general no-name batteries, but we prefer to use the same brand battery as our camera. Lithium-ion batteries the best because they’re rechargeable, they can usually store more energy than other battery types, and can retain power for longer.
Camera battery grips: We use a battery grip to hold multiple batteries which extends the battery life of the camera. It also helps provide extra grip, especially when shooting vertically!
Camera battery chargers: Again look for the charger that fits for your specific camera battery!
Power banks: Sometimes we need to use a power bank to charge up batteries when we’re on the road.
Circular Polarizer and Neutral Density filters are nice pieces of equipment to have, but pay the price for a name brand like Tiffen, Hoya or Kase. You don’t put cheap glass in front of your expensive lens.
Circular polarizers: we use polarizers to bring out the color and depth of our landscape shots.
Neutral density filters: these filters can be very helpful in obtaining a blurred motion with water scenes and when shooting in high light conditions.
We started out using Tiffen and Hoya filters, and had good success using them. BUT we became frustrated with the difficulty of using these filter systems and only got them out when we wanted long exposure shots.
Magnetic filter system by Kase: we found these and now our use of filters has been changed forever!
Portable External Hard Drive
The last thing you want is to lose photographs you’ve captured! Create a photo back-up process that you do at the end of EVERY PHOTO SHOOT. You don’t want to lose photos left in the camera if something corrupts the memory card.
Our image back-up system:
- IMMEDIATELY after a day of shooting, we download the photos to the main computer if home, or the laptop if we’re on the road.
- We also copy the photos to a portable external hard drive – we LOVE the LaCie rugged external hard drive because it’s so durable for travel! These are the back-up copies.
- We then save the photos to our cloud storage.
- When traveling keep your laptop and portable hard drive in two separate places – if your laptop is locked in the hotel safe while you are out exploring, be sure to carry the portable hard drive with you as they are small and lightweight.
As outdoor photographers, we needed something to shield our camera from the elements—rain, sand and snow.
Camera rain sleeve: you’ll find a variety of rain sleeves that features a unique eyepiece opening that adapts to most camera viewfinders, allowing composition of shots through the camera’s lens, not through the plastic. It can be used either hand-held or on a tripod.
Also, check to see that your camera backpack has a rain cover as well.
Lens Warmer and Photography Gloves
Lens warmer: When you’re shooting in cold weather, this will prevent fog forming on your camera lenses. The anti-fog belts use a heating material that safely heats up quickly and evenly.
Winter photography gloves: These gloves are amazing! They keep you warm and dry while shooting outdoors in winter conditions to help you operate small buttons, dials, and touchscreens. The gloves feature conductive fingertips that can be folded back and snapped into place, allowing you to use touchscreens with or without your fingertips covered by the glove. The thumb, forefinger, and middle finger have the fold back finger tips. An anti-slip material helps ensure that you’ll keep a secure grip on fragile, expensive gear and the hook-and-loop wrist strap creates a comfortable and secure fitment at the wrist that’s easily adjustable.
Rechargeable hand warmers: Having these hand warmers in your coat pocket will help keep your fingers and your batteries warm!
Headlamps: You’ll want a good headlamp you plan to do any sunrise or sunset photography! If you’re like us, we’re heading out in the dark to get to our sunrise photo spot – or we’re trekking back to our Jeep in the dark after sunset.
Be sure to get a headlamp with the “red light” feature if you plan to do any night photography. The red light makes it easier for your eyes to adjust and allows you to preserve your night vision. Using a red light instead of a white light is also common courtesy for other astrophotographers who might be out in the same area as you taking pictures!
AMAZON Landscape Photography Books: