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Albert Dros/National Geographic Travel Photographer of the Year Contest
“Taken from the highest residential building in Asia: The Zenith in Busan.”
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National Geographic’s Travel Photographer of the Year entries show we’re already living in the future

Johnny Simon
By Johnny Simon

Contributor

Impossibly tall glass towers shooting up into the sky, a crowded neon street scene reminsiceint of Blade Runner, a massive development that looks like it was plopped down all at once in a computer simulation.

These are just some of the entries shared by National Geographic in anticipation of announcing the Travel Photographer of the Year in their annual contest. In a recent selection of images from the contest, travel photographers have shared evidence of our imagined future, like the iridescent skyscrapers of Busan, South Korea, or a sleek, minimalist library in Stuttgart, Germany, that seem ripped from the imagined future of Hollywood films.

Unsurprisingly, several of the photos are from Hong Kong, a place so densely populated that photographer Ho Lam Cheng refers to it as “Motherboard City.”

“The buildings seem like computer servers,” he writes, “whereas the main roads are the connecting cables of different servers . . . People are like data, transferring from one side to another side.”

Voting for the “People’s Choice” category is still open, and contest winners will be announced on August 1.

Vitaly Pankratov//National Geographic Travel Photographer of the Year Contest
“This spring I was in Frankfurt on vacation. In the evening I went through the bridge and my eyes caught the spectacular view of modern night city – tall skyscrapers in the vicinity with old Cathedral.”
Edward Tin/National Geographic Travel Photographer of the Year Contest
“This photo captured the stunning view of the sea fog at the Kwai Chung Container Terminal in Hong Kong”
Andrzej Bochenski/National Geographic Travel Photographer of the Year Contest
A development near Al Ain, United Arab Emirates.
Ho Lam Cheng/National Geographic Travel Photographer of the Year Contest
“Hong Kong is one of the highest population destiny cities in the world. This city is full of sky-high buildings yet surrounded by lots of mountains. If you go up to the top, you will see a motherboard like structural design of the whole city. The buildings seem like computer servers, whereas the main roads are the connecting cables of different servers. People are like data, transferring from one side to another side.”
Tetsuya Hashimoto/National Geographic Travel Photographer of the Year Contest
“An apartment complex in Gifu Prefecture of Japan.”
Norbert Fritz/National Geographic Travel Photographer of the Year Contest
“The city library in Stuttgart.”
Nikhil Rasiwasia/National Geographic Travel Photographer of the Year Contest
“Vibrant street shoppers enjoying their daily lives during Ramadan in Commercial Street, Bangalore.”
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