UNITED STATES

CALIFORNIA COAST

August 19 - 25, 2017

April 14 - 20, 2018

August 18 - 24, 2018

April 13 - 19, 2019

NAPA VALLEY

August 25 - 27, 2017

April 20 - 22, 2018

August 24 - 26, 2018

April 19 - 21, 2019

Seascape, Landscape and Nature Photography

Includes

  1. -7 Days | plus 3 Days

  2. -Photographer | Guide

  3. -Photo Walks & Hikes

  4. -Small Group Size

  5. -Fine Hotels

  6. -Breakfasts

  7. -2 Dinners

  8. -National Park Entry Fees

  9. -Local Transportation

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PHOTOGRAPHY ADVENTURE VACATIONS

California Coast

Santa Barbara, Big Sur, Monterey, Muir Woods, Bodega Bay

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Photograph California’s Pacific Coast. It doesn’t get any better than this.

California Coast Photo Adventure Vacations – Inspire, Create and Learn.

If beautiful sunsets, giant redwoods and stunning beaches excite you, then California is the place you want to be. This state truly captures a variety of landscapes, from rugged coastlines, all the way to breath taking national parks. It offers diversity even if you just travel 80 miles up the coast. It is as if California is begging for you to capture it’s glory. Places like Santa Barbara, Monterey and Big Sur are just not found anywhere else in the world; and California offers them with easy access and plenty of turnouts to stop along the way.

This adventure has been designed so it will be remembered for a lifetime. You will come across seals frolicking in the ocean and walk amongst trees that are more majestic than you have ever seen. Our ambition is to get you to see this state through the eye of a lens; to focus in on what really stands out and capture it in a way of permanence. We will not only put you in destinations that you have fantasized about, but we will show you how to photograph it with a creative edge. We will use long exposures to create movement, take panoramic images to showcase the entire landscape and learn about the perfect composition - with depth of field to design the key interest in our photographs.

Throughout this expedition we will come across quaint towns that offer real California culture and that beach lifestyle that we all dream about from our office desks. During our week together we will engage in group discussions, inspire one another and have a great time doing what we love. By the end of the trip you will be viewing a scene in a way like never before, as if there is a camera lens inside your mind’s eye.

We will guide you to the most photogenic locations carefully planned for the best light, but to aid you in mentally visualizing a scene before capturing the decisive moment. Our aim is to raise your awareness and spark your creativity so that you not only go home with images to be proud of, but use your new found skills to improve and expand your photographic technique in general. Apart from the technical aspect of learning your camera settings and capabilities, you will learn how to turn an ordinary image into an extraordinary image by using your own creativity.

In addition, you will become knowledgeable on how to survey the landscape, utilize and approach your environment, photograph people indigenous to the region and the cultural considerations and challenges of photographing in a foreign country. Our time together will include individual and group discussions, inspiring ideas and great fun. If you love photographing landscapes, seascapes and nature, California’s Pacific coast is about as beautiful as it gets!

Please note: Our photography guide will always be on the look-out for interesting images during our photo adventure and for this reason, our itineraries are always subject to change. Weather plays a major role in capturing the best images possible. Changing light and weather conditions will always be assessed and changes in the schedule will be made accordingly. Flexibility, patience, and a sense of adventure are key to having a great time and capturing stellar photographs.



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Group Size



4-8 Guests


Experience | Difficulty



Beginner, amateur, enthusiast and semi-pro photographers

DSLR, mirrorless, compact or iPhone cameras

Moderate schedule

Travel by car or minibus

Moderate elevation changes and lots of walking and some hiking

(non-photographers also welcome)


Photographer | Guides



Michael Chinnici  |  August 19-25/27, 2017

Michael Cohen  |  April 14-20/22, 2018

Jerry Adamo  |  August 18-24/26, 2018

Michael Cohen  |  April 13-19/21, 2019


Weather | Sun



April - Temps 66/43 F  19/7 C  Sunrise 6:34 | Sunset 7:41 (19:41)

August - Temps 78/49 F  26/10 C  Sunrise 6:28 | Sunset 7:54 (19:54)


Includes



Travel, landscape, seascape and nature photography

Professional photographer | guide

Photo walks, hikes & discussions

Small group size (4-8 guests)

Fine hotel accommodations

Breakfasts

2 Dinners

National Park Permits

Local transportation


Accommodations



Biltmore Hotel or similar - Santa Barbara, California

Avila La Fonda Hotel or similar - Avila Beach, California

Ventana Inn and Spa or similar - Big Sir, California

Monterey Plaza Hotel & Spa or similar - Monterey, California

Palace Hotel or similar - San Francisco, California


Travel Information



Arrival Airport: Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) - Transfer time to hotel 60min

Departure Airport: San Francisco International Airport (SFO) - Transfer time to hotel 45min

Note: Both Los Angeles and San Francisco offer several other area airports to choose from.

Our adventure begins at 10 AM on the first day and ends at noon on the last day.

Travel Visa: A visa may be required depending on your nationality. Go to VisaMapper for more information.


Excursions



Land Shark - Santa Barbara (optional)

Whale Watching - Monterey (optional)


Optional Extension



3-Day Napa Valley add-on (See details below)


Price



CALIFORNIA COAST 7-DAY PHOTO ADVENTURE

Photo Adventure Vacation | August 19-25, 2017:  $5,195   SOLD OUT

Photo Adventure Vacation | April 14-20, 2018:  $5,495

Photo Adventure Vacation | August 18-24, 2018:  $5,495

Photo Adventure Vacation | April 13-19, 2019:  $5,795


3-DAY NAPA VALLEY EXTENSION

Photo Adventure Vacation | August 25-27, 2017:  $1,995   SOLD OUT

Photo Adventure Vacation | April 20-22, 2018:  $2,195

Photo Adventure Vacation | August 24-26, 2018:  $2,195

Photo Adventure Vacation | April 19-21, 2019:  $2,395


Single Supplement:   $800 (7-Day)  $300 (3-Day)

(Optional) Early Arrival Hotel Room (Malibu Beach Inn):  $350

(Optional) Late Departure Hotel Room:  $350


Deposit:  $1000


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*All prices are per person and based on double occupancy. Please select single occupancy for a private room. For your convenience we offer optional early arrival and late departure accommodations so you can extend your stay before or after the trip. We typically stay in boutique hotels in the 4-star category. Not all destinations offer these types of properties. We look for unique hotels which offer cultural, historic and/or authentic features. Depending on the size of the group, smaller boutique hotels may have limited room inventory. In some countries or in remote locations, we may be limited to lodges or branded chain hotels. Breakfast is included only if included in our room rates.



CALIFORNIA COAST 7 DAYS


Saturday (1)  Los Angeles - Santa Barbara

We meet on Sunday morning at the Malibu Beach Inn. At around 10 AM we will head off towards Santa Barbara, where we will check into the Biltmore Hotel and discuss PWA’s “10 Guiding Principles of Photography” as well as our “THE ART OF SEEING” photographic technique. During a group lunch we will have a discussion on what our guests would like to achieve through their photography style, technique and subject matters throughout this trip. After lunch, we will set out on our photographic journey and make our first stop up in the Santa Barbara Mountains where we will shoot the town from above. Once we are back down the mountain we will catch a ride on the Land Shark for a mid to late afternoon tour around the town. While on the Land Shark you will enjoy exquisite views of the Santa Barbara coastline, the American Riviera, and the Santa Ynez mountains. We will then celebrate the end of our day with our “Welcome Dinner” at the beautiful Harbor Restaurant on the pier sitting above the Pacific Ocean. (D)

Sunday (2)  Santa Barbara - Pismo Beach - Avila Beach

After breakfast we checkout and begin our journey north along the California coast, stopping first at Pismo Beach Dunes to experience and capture the beautiful formations the sand has created. We will then move further north to the Pismo Pier and take a walk underneath, noticing the way the light hits the slats and capture it with a high key essence. At this point we will stop for lunch at Steamers of Pismo, enjoying fresh and local seafood. After lunch we will continue our journey to our final destination of the day at Avila Beach. We will set up accommodations at the Avila La Fonda Hotel and conclude our day by shooting the sunset on Avial Beach. (B)

Note: Each night during your adventure we will asses the weather conditions and for those interested there may be a late night or very early morning wake up call to head out to do some night sky photography. Timing will be determined by the position of the Milky Way.

Monday (3)  Morro Bay - San Simeon - Big Sur (Mcway Falls)

Our Monday morning will be an early start, as we will head to Morro Bay to capture the gorgeous morning light on the famous Morro Rock. The rock is a 581-foot volcanic plug that is located just off shore of Morro bay. At this point we will have lunch to refuel. We then set on our way to San Simeon where we will find hundreds of Elephant Seals laid out across a small portion of beach. This will allow us to focus in on how to capture wildlife. We will hopefully get to witness some animal behavior of the seals while we are there. To end our day we will keep driving North, stopping at various turn-outs along the way and eventually arriving at McWay Falls in Big Sur for a glorious sunset shoot focusing on long exposures. Our accommodations for the night will be at the breathtaking Ventana Inn and Spa. (B)

Tuesday (4)  Big Sur River - Bixby Bridge - Monterey

On Tuesday morning we will eat breakfast at our hotel and afterwards look through our images and discuss the trip to date. We will also have a Q & A about editing techniques. From there, we head over to the Big Sur River to capture the motion of the water against the beautiful green trees surrounding the area. As we move on we will drive past the Historic Bixby Bridge where we will stop for a short period of time to capture this iconic location. The Bridge was completed in 1932 and crosses the gap between the mountains. We keep heading North until we reach Monterey were we will eat lunch and rest up for our sunset shoot. We will have a stunning end to the day as we will journey through the renowned 17 Mile Drive where we will see a mix of environments from golfing, surfing, wildlife and beautiful ocean views. For our nightly rest we will set up in the beautiful Monterey Plaza Hotel & Spa. (B)

Wednesday (5)  Monterey - Santa Cruz - Marshall Beach

Wednesday morning we will begin our day by jumping on a boat and setting off to go Whale Watching in Monterey. At this time of year the Killer Whales are all around these shores hunting after Gray Whales. This is truly an experience one will never forget. Once our exciting morning is complete we will head a little further north and eat lunch out on the Santa Cruz Pier, but bring your camera, as we will see another gathering of seals underneath the pier, lying down across the slats fighting for territory. After lunch we will stop at Hole in the Wall Beach as well as the Natural Bridges to capture breath taking rock formations over the ocean. Here we will experiment with long exposures and creating dynamic compositions. To finish up an already amazing day, we will head up to Marshall Beach to capture the Golden Gate Bridge from below. At this spot we will be using our tripods to focus in on long exposures of the tides coming in and even try out a few Panoramic photographs. For the night we will set up accommodations in San Francisco at the Palace Hotel enjoying spectacular city views. (B)

Thursday (6)  San Francisco - Muir Woods - Hawk Hill - Rodeo Beach

On our sixth day we will have breakfast and go over the images of the week, where we will have a discussion on workflow and editing techniques. Then we will head over to the Marina Headlands to arrive at the Muir Woods where we will embark on a gentle hike through the giant Red Woods and explore it’s glory. The tallest redwood in this section scales to an incredible 258 feet. At this point we will stop for lunch and rest our necks from the redwoods. We then march to Hawk Hill where we will experience grand vistas of the Golden Gate Bridge from above at a unique angle. Here we will once again work on our Panoramic shots as there is such a vast landscape to take in. For our final location we will photograph the sunset at Rodeo Beach. This beach is exhilarating, and covered with unique red and green pebbles. It is sheltered by cliffs and bounded by a lagoon. We then return to our hotel for our final night together, sharing photographs and stories at our “Farewell Dinner” at Rich Table, a new and upcoming local restaurant. (B) (D)

Friday (7)  San Francisco

For our last day together we will have our final discussion about the amazing journey we have just embarked on. We will review our favorite images, trade contact information and prepare for our journeys home. We urge you to extend your stay in California and make good use of everything you will learn on our photo adventure. We urge you to extend your stay in California and make good use of everything you have learned on our photo adventure. For those continuing on with us to Napa Valley, we will depart after checkout. (B)

NAPA VALLEY 3 DAY EXTENSION


Our Napa Valley extension includes 2 nights hotel accommodations and local transportation.

Friday (1)  Napa Valley

If you are staying on for our optional Napa Valley Add-On, we will depart after checkout for an amazing 3 days in Napa Valley. (B)

Saturday (2)  Sonoma - Bodega Bay - Russian River

Details coming soon (B)

Sunday (3)  Napa Valley

Early morning sunrise shoot amongst the vineyards and rolling hills of Napa Valley. Breakfast, final review of photos and checkout. Transportation will be arranged for San Francisco area airports. (B)

May all who come as guests... leave as friends®


Options and Benefits



Private Guided Tours & Adventures



We offer amazing private guided photo adventures, cultural tours and vacations for individuals, couples, families and groups. We can customize any of our published adventures, as well as others, to meet your individual needs, schedule, budget and interests. This may include the finest 5-star accommodations, business-class travel, and private guides and fixers who are able to make the impossible possible. If you are not interested in a photo-centric vacation, but you love our approach to private travel, we will be happy to design and deliver an amazing adventure focused on travel, culture and cuisine. Click here for more information. Feel free to call us at 1-888-834-0288 or contact us for more information.


Gift Certificates



Give someone you know a Gift Certificate, good toward any of our Photo Adventures, Photo Tours, Private Guided Tours, Online Courses, Prints or Merchandize. Our beautifully personalized eGift Certificates are delivered to you electronically. They are fully transferable and have a 2 year expiration date. They are available in any amount from $100 to $5000. It makes a great gift for anyone who loves photography, travel or adventure. Order now, or email us for more information.




Private Online Lightroom & Photoshop Tutorials



We offer private online Lightroom and Photoshop photo editing tutorials for individuals who would like to improve their post-processing skills. Each is customized to meet your individual needs, schedule, budget and interests. We provide you with one-on-one discussions using online connectivity. Many of our Photo Adventure guests select our online post-processing as an extension to their trip. Click here for more information.


Combination Tours



You can SAVE by combining two or more back-to-back photo adventures. Click here to explore our wonderful selection of Combination Packages.


Travel Insurance



We offer travel insurance through Travelex. The cost for travel insurance can be as low as 4% of the total trip cost, depending upon age and other factors. Knowing you have trip cancellation coverage can make a big difference should you have to cancel for some unforeseen reason. Travelex Insurance Services is a BBB Accredited business with an A+ rating. Click here to get a free quote.


INSIRE eNewsletter



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   Subscribe to our INSPIRE eNews and receive information about upcoming photo adventures, exciting new destinations, photography tips, special offers and more. It’s a great way to stay in touch with us on a frequent basis. Register today!


Loyalty Club**



All registered guests for 6 day or longer Photo Adventures are automatically enrolled in our Loyalty Club. You will receive a $200 discount on your next Photo Adventure. After attending just 3 Photo Adventures, you’ve reached “Gold” status and a $300 discount good toward future Photo Adventures. After attending 6 Photo Adventures, you’ve reached “Elite” status and a $500 discount good toward future Photo Adventures. Elite status guests also receive other benefits such as additional discounts, special offers, room upgrades (when available), and more. Click here to learn more.



**LOYALTY CLUB: Loyalty discounts only apply to 6 day or longer Photo Adventures. The discount is applied to the Photo Adventure fee when booked directly through our website, and cannot be added to or combined with any “pay in full”, “pay in advance” or “discounted specials”. This discount cannot be combined with any other offer. Your discount will be applied to your final payment. Only one discount per person, per adventure. This discount has no cash value. Polar Adventures are excluded from this offer. Loyalty Club status will be eliminated after 3 years of inactivity.  


NOTE: We reserve the right to change hotels based on availability and pricing. Not included in your rate are alcoholic beverages, unscheduled meals, travel to and from our destinations, airport transfers, travel insurance and any optional excursions you may choose to book on your own or as a group. Breakfast is usually included unless it is not offered in our hotel package. As is standard in the travel industry, all accommodations are based on double occupancy. Please choose the private room / single supplement option if you prefer your own room. Double occupancy can only be offered if you are traveling with a guest. We reserve the right to change events and schedules throughout the itinerary due to adverse weather conditions or complications that may arise that are out of our control. Our number one priority is always the safety of our group.






 

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