Slinging an old camera around your neck can turn any trip, vacation, or walk down the block into an adventure. Even places you've seen a million times before can become new and exciting when you look at them through a lens...even more so when you know that you can turn these photos into an income when you get home.
A twist of fate brought Cason Gaither from South Carolina to the golden-sand, surfer's paradise of Tamarindo, Costa Rica. "I heard about a job opportunity managing a restaurant in town through a friend on Facebook," says Cason.
From the first time Steve Reyer visited the trendy Costa Rican beach town Nosara—way back in 1992—he was smitten. A lifelong surfer, he instantly fell in love with Nosara's breath-taking Pacific coast, spectacular surf, and laidback atmosphere.
It was close to sunset. My tripod was set up, my settings were dialed in on my camera, and I was relaxing on a bench in a park along the river, eating delicious Basque pastries while watching busy people go by. I was waiting for the light to change.
Floating peacefully in the warm Caribbean waters, we'd just about given up on our quest to spot a manatee (sea cow). My friend—a freelance photographer like myself—had been raving about the possibility all day...but now it was almost time to head back to dry land.
When I called my boss and quit my dead-end job in the States, I was in The City of Lights, Paris. It was the best decision I ever made, in the best place I could have made it. At the time, I was on an eight-day trip with my best friend. We explored the entire city, walking everywhere we went.
Last night, my partner, Stacey and I sat outside on our back terrace, sipping a glass of wine and admiring the stars as they popped out one by one. Basking in the cool night air, we listened to the low laughter of our Ecuadorian neighbors next door, teasing one of their sons about his new novia (girlfriend).
Just 30 years ago, after emerging from decades of war, Vietnam was one of the five poorest countries in the world. Most of its existing infrastructure was damaged or missing, the population was dramatically decreased, and living conditions were abysmal.
As the sun sets on the coastal town of Santa Teresa, Costa Rica, the sky fills with a tangerine- and mango-hued sunset. I breathe a sigh of relief as the day's heat begins to fade and order a mojito in preparation for the evening's beachside party.
For Patrice Wynne, the arts-rich, colonial town of San Miguel de Allende was the only option when she moved overseas. "There's no other place that's even close for me," says Patrice. "The people, both Mexicans and expats, are so kind, so caring, so decent, so noble."