A Year of Travelling

©John Quintero

As 2018 arrives, one of my New Year’s resolutions is to dedicate more time to my blog and social channels, so here we go, I’m starting this month with a selection of my work during 2017.

8 countries and thousands of miles added to my endless journey out of my comfort zone are resumed in this post, perhaps a bit too many photos but I hope you don’t find them boring.

I spent most of the first semester of 2017 in Colombia, starting with the Blacks and White’s Carnival in Pasto, Nariño. I’ve been lucky to be in town for this wonderful celebration, 2 years in a row! It’s difficult to describe with words how magic this carnival is, I can only recommend you to add it to your bucket list.

My signature workshop in the Amazon was held once again in April, with a fantastic group of photographers who have become part of my fast growing Amazonian family. For 2018, the 6th version of this workshop will take part from 1oth to 15th April. If you are interested, take a look here.

One of the highlights of 2017 was a trip to Ecuador to shoot the Inti Raimy celebration in different towns around the Imbabura Province. I already forgot how many times I’ve been to Ecuador, but this beautiful Andean country always amazes me with its wonderful people and their colourful religious and cultural celebrations.

The second semester took me to an around the world trip, starting in Colombia. I visited Japan for the first time and I’m already planning a second trip, in a different season, perhaps Spring or Autumn.

After Japan, I went to Vietnam for my two Vietnam Travel Photography Expedition. While resourcing the images for this post, I went through thousands of photos I took during almost 6 weeks in the country and I feel very lucky to be able to have seen so much beauty and share it with the people who joined me on these 2 expeditions. What a privilege!

After Vietnam, I went to Sri Lanka. The country brought memories of India to my mind and I have to say, this is a paradise for photographers. Srilankans are one of the friendliest people I have met.

I flew to Thailand after Sri Lanka but only stayed in Bangkok. Thai food is one of my favourites so I spent most of the time resting and indulging in green curry. I took my Nikon camera out of its bag only a couple of days but carried the GoPro Hero 4 with me all the time. In fact, the only photograph I’m sharing from Thailand was taken with the GoPro.

My next great adventure was Ethiopia, a country I love for many reasons. This time I revisited the Omo Valley, which is changing fast, with towns and villages that I could barely recognize from my first trip, back in 2012.  I had the time to catch up with friends and visit new locations in the north. Climbing to the rock-hewn churches of Gheralta was challenging but that’s simply one of my favourite places on earth. Simply wow!

The ultimate adventure was a 5 days trip to the Amhara region that took me to the beautiful Simien Mountains National Park, also called the Roof of Africa. There’s no way to show with photographs the magnificence of this landscape. Exhausted after several days of trekking with temperatures that dropped to zero at night, it was hard but the vivid memories I got from this trip is what makes my work a blessing.

I was in Ethiopia this time, scouting for locations for my next big expedition in November 2018. Keep tuned for the launching in upcoming days.

Definitely, 2017 was a year of growth as a human being, as a professional and businessman, I keep learning from the people I meet throughout the journey, and the more I travel, the more I want to be out there, facing the world as it evolves in front of my eyes. I still have to learn how to deal with sleep deprivation though.

This post is a collection of some of my favourite photos from 2017. I tried to include a few photos from each of the 8 countries visited. Enjoy and feel free to share if you believe they are worthed.

Happy New Year!


A girl offering flowers to the Virgin of Las Mercedes, patroness of San Juan de Pasto, Colombia. With this ceremony, the Blacks and White's Carnival is officially open, January 2017
©John Quintero
Black and White Carnival in Pasto, South Colombia, the largest celebration in South Colombia and a UNESCO Intangible Heritage of Humanity, January 2017
©John Quintero
Dancers wearing traditional Colombian costumes get ready to perform at El Santísimo, Bucaramanga, Colombia, January 2017
©John Quintero
A fique farmer collects fique fibre at sunset, after leaving it drying for the day. Fique or Cabuya is a natural fibre, used mainly for the fabrication of sacks, bags and rugs in Colombia. Curití, Santander, Colombia, January 2017



An Inga indigenous woman boils corn on the night previous to the Atun Puncha or Carnival of Forgiveness and Reconciliation in Santiago, Putumayo, Colombia. Around 10 cattle are sacrificed to offer a free meal to all the community and tourists attending the event. February 2017
©John Quintero
A couple from the indigenous Inga community, put flower petals on each other's heads, as a sign of forgiveness and love, during the Carnival of Forgiveness and Reconciliation in Sibundoy Valley, Putumayo. This carnival also known as Bëtscnate for the Katmëntsa indigenous people and Kalusturinda in the indigenous Inga community, unites these two communities around the exaltation of forgiveness and the search for peace, tolerance, respect and affection. Putumayo, Colombia, February 2017



©John Quintero
This boy was helping his mother to collect candle wax at Las Lajas Sanctuary, Ipiales, one of the most beautiful basilicas of Colombia. Taken during the John Quintero Photography Meeting, held in Nariño, South Colombia, attended by photographers from Mexico, Colombia, USA, Venezuela and Australia. March 2017
©John Quintero
A girl from the Embera Indigenous people plays drum during an NGO gathering for displaced minority children in Tibasosa, Boyacá, Colombia. March 2017



©John Quintero
Elderly women from the Yaguas Tribe wearing leaves and natural fibres from Amazon jungle trees as their attire for traditional ceremonies. Taken during our Amazon Travel Photography and Visual Narrative Workshop. April 2017
©John QuinteroA ‘mama’ or wisdom woman from the Ticuna tribe wearing a dress made out of Amazonian tree bark. Taken during our Amazon Travel Photography and Visual Narrative Workshop. April 2017
A ‘mama’ or wisdom woman from the Ticuna tribe wearing a dress made out of Amazonian tree bark. Taken during our Amazon Travel Photography and Visual Narrative Workshop. April 2017



©John Quintero
María del Carmen, an 82 years old woman who has worked her whole life as a potter in Ráquira, Boyacá Department, Colombia. Ráquira is famous for its colony of artisans, who produce traditional northern Andean pottery since it was inhabited by the Muisca, long before the Spanish conquered the central highlands of the Colombian Andes. May 2017
©John Quintero
A woman dancing Cumbia in Cartagena de Indias, Bolivar Department. Cumbia is a type of music that began as a courtship dance practiced among the African population on the Caribbean coasts of Colombia, and now part of the Colombian traditional culture. May 2017
©John Quintero
A Cuban President Fidel Castro impersonator in Cartagena, Colombia. May 2017



©John Quintero
A contestant for a mothers beauty pageant poses before going on stage during the African Colombian Day celebration in Cauca, Colombia. June 2017
©John Quintero
Little girls are getting ready for a beauty pageant contest, during the African Colombian Day celebration in Cauca, Colombia. June 2017
©John Quintero
A candy seller moves among the crowd during the Inti Raymi, the summer solstice celebration for the Andean people. Peguche, Ecuador. June 2017
©John Quintero
A woman dances during the Inti Raymi, the summer solstice celebration for the Andean people. Peguche, Ecuador. June 2017
Indigenous people from Cotacachi celebrate the Summer Solstice or Inti Raymi. Cotacachi males are famous for their authentic way of dressing for the event, with gigantic leather or cardboard black hats and army uniforms. Mainly young guys march, dance and get drunk for days. Cotacachi, Ecuador. June 2017
©John Quintero
A man wearing a colourful knitted mask, stand out among a crowd of mainly black hats in Cotacachi, Imbabura Province, during the celebration of Inti Raymi or 'Fiesta del Sol' as the Summer Solstice is known for the Andean people. Cotacachi, June 2017
©John Quintero
Girl wearing the traditional attire of the indigenous women of Natabuela in Imbabura Province, Ecuador. The enormous felt hat was formerly worn on a daily basis but now is worn by men and women only on special occasions. The portrait was taken during the Saint John The Baptist celebration in Natabuela, Ecuador. June 2017
©John Quintero
Teacher Patricio leads ‘El Son de Los Palomos’ a group of young boys and girls dedicated to play traditional Andean music from Northern Ecuador. June 2017
©John Quintero
A man dressed as a ‘mojiganga’ smoking in Funes, Nariño, South Colombia. According to the locals, the Mojigangas started when Spanish conquerors entered the region and raped local women. As a way of tricking the Spaniards, local men started dressing as women and wandered the streets at night trying to catch the perpetrators. Las Mojigangas is now a cultural event where men dance day and night along the streets of Funes, Nariño. June 2017
©John Quintero
Two people watch the ‘Mojigangas’ dancing in front of their home in Funes, Nariño, South Colombia. June 2017
©John Quintero
A man whirls a fireworks castle in Funes Nariño, Colombia, during the celebration of The Mojigangas, a popular carnivalesque festival with dance and religious ceremonies. June 2017



©John Quintero
A cloud forest in Ñambi Natural Reserve in Altaquer, Nariño, Colombia. July 2017



©John Quintero
Tourists dressed as geishas in Tokyo, Japan. August 2017
©John Quintero
A jinrikisha (human-powered rickshaw) in Tokyo, Japan. August 2017
A couple walk through the Fushimi Inari Taisha shrine in Fushimi Ward, Kyoto, Japan. August 2017
©John Quintero
Portrait of a geisha in Tokyo, Japan. August 2017



©John Quintero
Nguom Ngao Cave, one of the most spectacular cave systems in Vietnam. Created by an underground river, it extends for several kilometres underground; villagers sheltered here during the 1979 war with China. September 2017
©John Quintero
Peasants crossing the stunning rice terraces of Lyn Thai, Northern Vietnam. September 2017
©John Quintero
Birds fly over the rice terraces of Y Ty, Northern Vietnam. September 2017
©John Quintero
Two men climbing up the Fanzipan Mountain in North of Vietnam. Fanzipan. At 3143 metres, this is the highest pick of Indochina. Taken during my second Vietnam Travel Photo Expedition in September 2017
©John Quintero
Sunset at Halong Bay, Vietnam. This is a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1994. Taken during my first Vietnam Photo Expedition. September 2017
©John Quintero
A woman riding a bicycle on a rainy afternoon in Hanoi. Taken during my Vietnam Travel Photography Expedition, September 2017
©John Quintero
A woman dock her boat at dusk, after taking her last customers around the Van Long Nature Reserve. Taken during my first Vietnam Photo Expedition. September 2017
©John Quintero
Red Dao women eating young rice in Northern Vietnam. The Red Dao are one of the 55 officially recognised ethnic minorities in China and one of the 54 ethnic groups officially recognised by Vietnam. Taken during my second Vietnam Photo Expedition. September 2017



©John Quintero
A man queuing waits as other one washes his hands in Petta Market in Colombo, Sri Lanka. October 2017
Kandyan dancers pose before going on stage in Kandy, Sri Lanka. The origin of this elaborated performance was a ceremony to honour the god Kohomba, with drummers and dancers wearing flamboyant costumes with metallic and fabric ornaments that jangle and shine as they dance. October 2017
A fire walker entertains a crowd in Kandy, Sri Lanka during a Kandyan dance performance. October 2017
©John Quintero
Elephant calves play at Pinnawala, an orphanage, nursery and captive breeding ground for wild Asian elephants located at Pinnawala village, 13 km northeast of Kegalle town in Sabaragamuwa Province of Sri Lanka. October 2017
©John Quintero
A girl observes candles burning at Sri Muthumariamman temple in Matale, Sri Lanka. October 2017
©John Quintero
A man walks along tea plantations in Nuwara Eliya, Sri Lanka. October 2017
©John Quintero
A tea leaf picker in Ella, in the Badulla District of Uva Province, Sri Lanka. Tea leaf pickers in the Sri Lankan tea industry are all female. October 2017
©John Quintero
A foggy morning in Ella, Badulla District of Uva Province, Sri Lanka. October 2017
©John Quintero
A man carrying construction materials to Adam's Peak in Nallathanniya, Central Sri Lanka. He's just starting a climb of 5400 steps that will take him around 4 hours to complete, carrying more than 20 kgs of concrete blocks on his head. October 2017
©John Quintero
Fishing on stilts in Matara, on the coast of Southern Province, 160 km from Colombo, Sri Lanka. October 2017
©John Quintero
A man selling boiled eggs in Bangkok, Thailand. October 2017



©John Quintero
The breathtaking landscape of Gheralta in Tigray Region, Northern Ethiopia. November 2017
©John Quintero
A young man from the Dassanech tribe, crosses the Omo River in Omorate, Omo Valley, Ethiopia. November 2017
An Orthodox priest takes notes of supplies donated by pilgrims at Debre Damo Monastery in Tigray, North of Ethiopia. November 2017
©John Quintero
A Hamer tribe young man jumps over cattle during the bull jumping ceremony in Turmi, Omo Valley, South Ethiopia. This ceremony is the passage for any young man within the Hamer tribe to convert him into an adult. November 2017
Bana tribe men gather at a local bar during the market day in Omo Valley, Ethiopia. November 2017
©John Quintero
A boy skipping at the Simien Mountains National Park, north east of Gondar in Amhara region, Northern Ethiopia. These mountains are a UNESCO World Heritage Site. November 2017
©John Quintero
A woman sprinkles water over barley bread she's cooking on firewood. The bread has a tangy taste and it's mainly used to brew a local alcoholic, thick drink called tella. Debark, Amhara Region, Ethiopia. November 2017


©John Quintero
Alexandra Palace Park in London, during the first day of snowfall, winter 2017. December 2017


  1. Lucía January 16, 2018 Reply

    Me encantan todas John!!!! Que suerte tienes de viajar por el mundo tomando fotos. Algún día te acompañaré a tus talleres.

  2. Deborah H January 16, 2018 Reply

    Too many? Not enough John! Those are the best travel photos I’ve seen, simply amazing

  3. Rakesh P January 16, 2018 Reply

    Your work is amazing, share more often please and come to India, I dont see any pics of my country

  4. Nathallie January 17, 2018 Reply

    Que fotografias tan hermosas. Que buen ojo. Felicidades!!!

  5. Mikhail January 17, 2018 Reply

    Come to Russia, nice people for your photos dear John and I want to learn from a master like you. Best regards Mikhail

  6. DIEGO RODRIGUEZ January 17, 2018 Reply

    que hermosas, gracias john por compartirlas !!

  7. Felipe Noriega January 19, 2018 Reply

    The best! Amazing pictures master!

  8. Richard Beale January 19, 2018 Reply

    Do you sell prints? Or do you have any book of your work, it’s outstanding

  9. Carlos Velasquez January 22, 2018 Reply

    John, buenos dias, dos cositas para comentar el dia de hoy. Las fotos fotos una berraquera, me gustaron todas, la de contra luz y B/W hermozas
    con respecto al proximo taller que tienes en Ethioia como le habia comentado antes, me gustaria ir despues del 20 si es posible si no se puede ni modo sera en otra ocacion.

    Por favor me deja saber cuando tienes toda la logistica del viaje.
    Un Abrazo y Gracias por compartir esas fotasas.

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