Your smartphone might be good enough to make your friends jealous of your adventures through an Instagram story, but when it comes to collecting memories it cannot compete with a quality camera. The best point-and-shoot cameras for travel are compact, versatile, and require no technical knowledge of photography. They capture incredibly detailed images with the click of a button, providing realistic colors and sharp figures even in less than ideal conditions.
Whether your focus is landscapes, wildlife, architecture or street life, adding a point-and-shoot camera to your packing list will allow you to fully express your creativity on the road without adding too much weight on your shoulders. We have selected the best point-and-shoot cameras for travel available on the market to help you unleash the Steve McCurry that is in you.
For more of our top photography gear recommendations, check out the Best Cameras for Travel.
Quick Answer - The Best Point and Shoot Cameras for Travel
- Nikon Coolpix P1000
- Fujifilm X100f
- Canon PowerShot G7 X Mark II
- Olympus Tough TG-5
- Sony Cyber-Shot RX100 VI
- Panasonic Lumix LX10
- Canon PowerShot SX740
- Nikon Coolpix L820
- Canon PowerShot ELPH 360
- Fujifilm FinePix S1 16 MP
Comparison Table - Best Travel Point and Shoot Cameras
|Nikon Coolpix P1000||f2.8 - 8.0||24-3000mm||16.7 megapixels||3.12 lbs||$$$||4.2|
|Fujifilm X100f||f1.8 - 2.8||24-100mm||20.2 megapixels||1.4 lbs||$$$||4.8|
|Canon PowerShot G7 X Mark II||f1.8 - 2.8||24-100mm||20.2 megapixels||1.4 lbs||$$||4.0|
|Olympus Tough TG-5||f2 - 4.9||25-100mm||12 megapixels||0.55 lb||$$||3.9|
|Sony Cyber-Shot RX100 VI||f2.8 - 4.5||24-200mm||20.1 megapixels||1.1 lbs||$$$||5.0|
|Panasonic Lumix LX10||f1.4-2.8||24-72mm||20.1 megapixels||0.68 lb||$$||4.4|
|Canon PowerShot SX740||f3.3 - 6.9||24–960 mm||20.3 megapixels||0.61 lb||$$||4.0|
|Nikon Coolpix L820||f3.0 - 5.8||22.5–675 mm||16 megapixels||1.04 lbs||$||4.5|
|Canon PowerShot ELPH 360||f3.6 - 7||25–300 mm||20.2 megapixels||5.2 ounces||$||3.9|
|Fujifilm FinePix S1 16 MP||f2.8 - 5.6||24–1200 mm||16.2 megapixels||1.5 lbs||$$||4.4|
Reviews - Best Point and Shoot Travel Cameras
Nikon Coolpix P1000
- Aperture: f2.8 - 8.0
- Dimensions: 5.76 x 7.14 x 4.68 in
- Focal Length: 24-3000mm
- Resolution: 16.7 megapixels
- Weight: 3.12 lbs
- Superzoom For Capturing Distant Subjects
- Ultra High Definition 4K Video Resolution
- Tilting Screen That Flips Out To Shoot From Uncomfortable Angles
BEST FOR: WILDLIFE PHOTOGRAPHERS
The most impressive feature of the Nikon Coolpix P1000 is the 125x zoom lens that will let you shoot subjects from far, far away, as no other point-and-shoot camera can. Thanks to its superzoom lens you will be able to capture small and moving animals, get close-ups of people playing sports, and even frame details of the moon’s surface.
Because of the size of its lens, the Nikon Coolpix D1000 is not the most portable camera on our list, but it is worth the investment if you want to capture distant subjects without being intrusive. It comes with optical image stabilization to avoid blur and is built with solid, durable components. The D1000 also has great video capabilities, with a high-definition shooting option and a tilting screen to record the perfect director’s cut.
- Aperture: f1.8 - 2.8
- Dimensions: 1.65 x 2.4 x 4.15 in
- Focal Length: 24-100mm
- Resolution: 20.2 megapixels
- Weight: 1.4 lbs
- Retro Look
- Interchangeable Lens
- 1080p High Definition Video Quality
BEST FOR: CREATIVE STREET PHOTOGRAPHERS
The Fujifilm X100F comes with a 35mm prime lens, meaning that you will not be able to zoom. Why would this be an advantage? Apart from the great low light performance, this lens will produce super sharp pictures and push you to think carefully about the best way to frame a scene. The 35mm is great for storytellers. It is wide enough to include ample background with your subjects and works well for both interiors and exteriors. Plus, the lens is interchangeable, so you can just switch to a different Fuji lens if you want to experiment with different perspectives.
As is the case with most Fuji cameras, the X100F is designed with a beautiful retro look. It is light and compact, but offers a huge image resolution of over 24 megapixels — ideal if you plan to print and show off your best travel shots once you return back home.
Canon PowerShot G7 X Mark II
- Aperture: f1.8 - 2.8
- Dimensions: 1.65 x 2.4 x 4.15 in
- Focal Length: 24-100mm
- Resolution: 20.2 megapixels
- Weight: 1.4 lbs
- Built-in WiFi (for fast and efficient downloading)
- Continuous Shooting Up To 8 Frames Per Second (for shooting fast-moving subjects)
- Great Low Light Performance
BEST FOR: THE INSTAGRAM ADDICT
If you can’t wait to get back home to share your images, this camera will help you get to your friends (and followers) in zero time. Thanks to the built-in WiFi function you can transfer and publish your images in a matter of seconds. With its large resolution and superwide aperture, the Canon Powershot G7 X Mark II will produce photographs far superior to your smartphone’s camera, even when light conditions are not optimal.
Lightweight and compact, the Canon Powershot G7 fits in most pockets and allows you to freeze the moment thanks to its ability to shoot up to 8 frames per second. It includes a 3.0″ LCD monitor that tilts up 180 degrees, which you can use for self-portraits or for shooting at otherwise uncomfortable angles.
Olympus Tough TG-5
- Aperture: f2 - 4.9
- Dimensions: 4.4 x 1.3 x 2.6 in
- Focal Length: 25-100mm
- Resolution: 12 megapixels
- Weight: 0.55 lb
- Waterproof, Shockproof & Freezeproof
- Lightweight and Compact
- Integrated GPS, Manometer, Compass, and Temperature Sensors
BEST FOR: THE ADRENALINE JUNKIE
Waterproof up to 50 feet, dustproof, shockproof, and freezeproof: no activity is too risky for the Olympus Tough TG-5. Engineered for the hardcore adventurer, this point-and-shoot camera will accompany you in the most hostile environments without sacrificing image quality.
The TG-5 isn’t only a camera that will survive in harsh weather conditions, it is also filled with impressive technological features. It includes an integrated GPS system that records where a photo has been taken and maps out your itinerary through your snaps, plus it has a compass to help you find your way in the wilderness. When set in burst mode it can shoot up to 20 frames per second; while in video mode it can record slow-motion clips in high definition. The wide aperture lets you collect clear photographs even under water and the 25-100mm focal length allows you to zoom in close enough to capture distant subjects.
Sony Cyber-Shot RX100 VI
- Aperture: f2.8 - 4.5
- Dimensions: 4 x 1.7 x 2.29 in
- Focal Length: 24-200mm
- Resolution: 20.1 megapixels
- Weight: 1.1 lbs
- Extremely Fast Autofocus
- Pocket Size
- Super Slow Motion Video Function
BEST FOR: ALL-AROUND QUALITY
Considering the size of the Sony Cyber-Shot X100 VI, it is surprising how much it can do. Thanks to a focal length ranging from 24mm to 200mm this award-winning camera can frame wide landscape scenes or zoom in to capture sharp, intimate portraits from a distance. The camera can focus in a fraction of a second and is complete with a sophisticated eye detection system that tracks your subject’s eyes for better people photography. It also has a tilting touch screen that can substitute the shutter button when photographing from uncomfortable angles or in those paparazzi situations when you’d rather not lift the camera to eye level.
The Sony Cyber-Shot X100 VI doesn’t only capture excellent photographs, it also has a great array of video features. It can record clips at a high-definition 4K resolution, but also has the ability to produce slow-motion and super-slow-motion videos shot at up to 960 frames per second.
Panasonic Lumix LX10
- Aperture: f1.4-2.8
- Dimensions: 1.65 x 4.15 x 2.36 in
- Focal Length: 24-72mm
- Resolution: 20.1 megapixels
- Weight: 0.68 lb
- Great For Night Time Images
- Slow Motion Video
- Tilting Selfie Display
BEST FOR: CLOSE-UPS (OF YOURSELF AND OTHERS)
With over 20 megapixels in resolution and a Leica lens with image stabilization properties, the Panasonic Lumix LX10 is the perfect compromise between size, price, and image quality. The extra-wide aperture allows you to shoot sharp images even in dark environments, while the tilting screen and shallow depth of field will take your selfie skills to the next level.
The minimum focusing distance is just above one inch, so you can get really close to your subject and capture the tiniest of details. Plus, the “post-focus” function allows you to adjust the focus after you shoot the picture, turning photographs gone wrong into perfect composition with a single touch. If that’s not enough, the Panasonic Lumix LX10 also includes a super-fast autofocus system, allowing you to freeze moving objects like no other camera in this price range can.
Canon PowerShot SX740
- Aperture: f3.3 - 6.9
- Dimensions: 1.6 x 4.3 x 2.5 in
- Focal Length: 24–960 mm
- Resolution: 20.3 megapixels
- Weight: 0.61 lb
- Impressive Zoom
- Lightweight And Compact
- Remote Shooting
BEST FOR: FULL FEATURES IN MINIMALIST DESIGN
You won’t even feel the weight of the Canon Powershot SX740 HS in your pocket, but don’t judge the camera by its size. Even with its slim and lightweight design, this compact point-and-shoot will capture amazing pictures of subjects close and far.
With built-in WiFi and Bluetooth technologies, not only you will be able to transfer and share your images with the blink of an eye, but you can also shoot remotely through your smartphone. This feature comes in handy every time you want to shoot a night time scene and touching the camera may cause a blur in the photograph, or when you want to take a group shot.
Additionally, the Creative Modes installed in the camera provide filters for any type of photography. Choose the “portrait mode” for realistic renditions of people, “food mode” to make the colors of your dishes pop, or sepia to release your inner artist.
Nikon Coolpix L820
- Aperture: f3.0 - 5.8
- Dimensions: 4.37 x 3.35 x 2.99 in
- Focal Length: 22.5–675 mm
- Resolution: 16 megapixels
- Weight: 1.04 lbs
- Ergonomic Design
- Built-in Bluetooth Technology
- Vibration Reduction To Avoid Blur
BEST FOR: EASE OF USE
With a superzoom lens capable of getting you 40 times closer to your subject and an ergonomic design that allows for a firm grip of the camera body, the Nikon Coolpix L820 is an impressively versatile camera. Ideal for budget-conscious travelers looking to capture high-quality images without having to learn the technicalities of photography, this point-and-shoot performs well even in low light conditions.
The simple menus and controls let you understand the potential of this camera as soon as it’s out of the box, while the Vibration Reduction system helps to create sharp photographs of close and distant subjects. In addition to this, the Nikon Coolpix L820 can record high-definition videos from a variety of angles thanks to the handy tilting screen.
Canon PowerShot ELPH 360
- Aperture: f3.6 - 7
- Dimensions: 4.3 x 3.1 x 2.7 in
- Focal Length: 25–300 mm
- Resolution: 20.2 megapixels
- Weight: 5.2 ounces
- Built-in WiFi For Easy Sharing
- Creative Shot Mode For Artistic Images
- Slim Design And Large LCD Screen
BEST FOR: PORTRAIT PHOTOGRAPHERS
An inexpensive camera that fits in every pocket thanks to its slim design, the Canon Powershot Elph 360 is a powerful tool to record your best travel moments. Thanks to the large LCD screen and the integrated Optical Image Stabilizer you’ll be able to perfectly frame your subjects and shoot crisp and realistic portraits from any distance, without the need of a tripod.
The Creative Shot Mode allows you to apply 46 different Canon filters to your photographs, to create artistic images by altering composition, lighting, and color. Thanks to the built-in WiFi, your carefully crafted images can be easily transferred to your smartphone and be shared with the world instantly.
Fujifilm FinePix S1 16 MP
- Aperture: f2.8 - 5.6
- Dimensions: 5.24 x 4.33 x 3.58 in
- Focal Length: 24–1200 mm
- Resolution: 16.2 megapixels
- Weight: 1.5 lbs
- Weather Resistant
- One-Touch Wireless Communication With Smartphone Or PC
- Super Zoom And Super Macro For Excellent Close-ups
BEST FOR: HIKERS AND OUTDOORS ENTHUSIASTS
The Fujifilm Finepix S1 is the world’s first water resistant and dust resistant point-and-shoot camera with 50x superzoom. This means that while you’re exploring the outdoors, you’ll be able to shoot distant wildlife or landscapes no matter the weather conditions. Whether you find yourself in a windy desert or trying to set up your tent in the rain, this camera will capture the scene, so you’ll always remember what you put yourself through for the sake of adventure.
Thanks to the one-touch wireless communication system you can connect the camera to a smartphone or laptop instantly. This is useful both to shoot without touching the camera (avoiding the blur in long exposures, for example), or to send your best shots to friends and family back home.
THINGS TO CONSIDER WHEN BUYING POINT-AND-SHOOT CAMERAS FOR TRAVEL
When it comes to choosing photography gear, price is a pretty good indicator of quality. Point-and-shoot cameras are sold for as little as a few hundred dollars and go up into the thousands. The cameras on the cheapest end of the spectrum are usually only slightly better than a decent smartphone.
When you want to get started in outdoor photography and you invest in a middle-range (or higher) point-and-shoot camera, the results can be truly impressive. It is not necessary to invest in a 4,000-dollar Leica to shoot a great picture, but if you value your travel memories you will be thankful for a camera that can capture sharp, realistic images.
The resolution of a photograph is measured in megapixels (MP) and it’s one of the factors that determine the quality of an image. In short, the resolution indicates the amount of detail in a photograph. A higher number of megapixels means a sharper picture, but you shouldn’t worry too much about resolution if you only intend to share your photographs on social media or view them on a computer screen — in that case, even just 6MP will be plenty. Resolution becomes valuable if you want to print your pictures in large format or if you need to crop them.
Socks with no cushioning at all are thin and lightweight. They are great for short hikes in hot weather conditions because they are breathable and quick-drying, but tend to be less durable than thicker socks.
LOW LIGHT PERFORMANCE
A camera that doesn’t perform well in low light conditions will produce grainy pictures in the dark. Such performance depends mostly on the size of the aperture that lets light reach the sensor. The lower the number of f-stops (for example f1.8 or f2.8), the wider the aperture.
A lens with a maximum aperture of f1.8 will shoot sharp, clear photographs even without a strong light source, while a lens with a maximum aperture of f5 will not be very effective in poorly lit environments. Outdoor photographers shooting in the daytime will be fine with most point-and-shoot cameras, but if you are planning to photograph interiors or evening scenes you might want to opt for a camera with a brighter lens (i.e., wider range of aperture).
SIZE & ERGONOMICS
You don’t need a bulky DSLR to bring great pictures back home. These days even the smallest camera can capture images of the highest quality. If portability is a priority, choose a camera that will fit in your pocket and can be carried anywhere with ease. If you have big hands or you don’t mind some extra weight, opt for one with good grip and a lens that will let you zoom further into the distance.
Point-and-shoot cameras normally have a single, multipurpose, unchangeable lens, but there are exceptions. Some cameras will let you swap lenses to experiment with different focal lengths or upgrade to higher quality glass. While lenses designed for a specific use tend to produce better images, they are also expensive. When you buy a camera with interchangeable lenses keep in mind the cost of the additional gear.
While video making is not meant to be the primary use of compact photo cameras, technology has developed to a point where even the most compact point-and-shoot cameras can record amazing clips. If you intend to document your adventures through film, check the video specifications before buying. Resolution can vary between 720p and 4K, and recording time often has a cap at 15 or 20 minutes. It is good to remember that shooting video drains the battery much faster than taking pictures, so you might want to consider buying a second battery if you are planning a debut as the next Indiana Jones.
A camera that automatically adjusts its exposure, white balance, and focus at the click of the shutter button.
The distance between the lens and the image sensor, normally stated in millimeters. A 50mm lens will resemble the field of vision of the human eye. Shorter focal lengths (such as 18mm) create a wider framing, while longer focal lengths narrow the field of view and allow you to capture more distant subjects. Based on this measure we talk about “wide-angle” and “telephoto” lenses.
The aperture of a lens, measured in f-stops, is the channel through which light travels to the sensor. Wider apertures are preferable over narrow apertures as they allow you to shoot in darker conditions. However, they usually come at a price. The aperture of a lens can be fixed or variable and is described with the letter “f” followed by a number. The lower the number of f-stops, the wider the aperture.
4K / 1080p / 720p
These numbers refer to the video resolution (different from the photo resolution) and indicate the number of pixels displayed vertically across the screen. The higher the number of pixels, the higher the quality of the video.
A lens with a fixed focal length, such as a 35mm. While it is not possible to “zoom in” with prime lenses, they usually produce higher quality pictures and perform better in low light conditions than lenses with variable focal length.
A lens with an adjustable focal length. Zoom lenses, such as an 18-55mm or a 70-300mm, allow the photographer to change the framing from wider to narrower by twisting a ring on the lens.
A long-focus lens designed to capture distant subjects.
The mechanism inside the camera or the lens that allows for automatic focusing on a subject. Many modern digital cameras include a facial recognition system that instantly detects and focuses on human faces within the frame.
FPS (FRAMES PER SECOND)
FPS refers to the highest number of photographs a camera can capture in one second. Most cameras on this list will capture a maximum of 6 to 8 images per second when the shutter button is held down in optimal conditions.
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