Travel cameras: Canon D70, Olympus OM-D EM10-II, iPhones, and Garmin Virb

Travel and photography are 2 words that often are together. How do you take your photos? Click to read more about our cameras!

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I can’t do anything without a camera, and we often have multiple. Even when we’re only going out to get some toilet paper, I take at least the phone with me so I can snap some photos. We just never know what we’re gonna see, what the kids are gonna do, or if the light will be perfect.

At the moment, we have 2 cameras and 2 phones.

*updated in February 2018

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The DSLR: Canon D70

machu picchu peru

Postcard worthy, the classic view of one of the wonders of the world, taken with the 70D.

Our oldest is a Canon D70. It’s been with us for around 3 years, since we sold our Canon Rebel XT – which was with us for 8 years. They’re both beginner DSLR cameras, however, the D70 is a very improved version.

Well, it’s a bulky DSLR, not easy to use and even more difficult to carry around BUT we love it. It takes some incredible photos, even in Auto Mode. We have the kit lens (the one that came with the camera) and a 50mm 1.8. The 50 mm is better, but it’s a fixed lens (doesn’t zoom) so it’s a bit more difficult to use. We use it when it’s darker or when we want better photos, but otherwise, we stick to the kit lens.

salar uyuni bolivia reflections

This brown thing is just the wet salt. When it dries, it becomes white (or so our guide told us). The entrance of the amazing Uyuni Salt Flats, taken with our D70.

I remember when we bought our first DSLR after years of point and shoot cameras (and this was after the film cameras, haha, yes. We had that), we were overwhelmed. It took us a long time to learn how to use it but the photos were SO MUCH better that we just made an effort, took the time to research and learn how to use it. We’ve made a lot of progress. We rarely put in on Auto anymore.

I love it – and I chose Canon rather than Nikon 10 years ago because it was cheaper. I’m that person. I don’t regret it, though!

Most of the photos on this site so far were taken with this camera.

Click here to find the latest prices of the Canon D70!

* in December 2017, we decided to leave the camera in storage while we tried some new things.

Click to know all the things to do in Wanaka, New Zealand, for families with kids.

The sun shone almost every day of our stay there and I couldn’t have been happier. We enjoyed it a lot more than we thought we would. Wanaka grew even more in our hearts! Taken with the Olympus mentioned below.


The Mirrorless: Olympus OM-D EM10-ll

Olympus OM-D EM10 Mark ll

This is the Olympus OM-D EM10 Mark ll in João’s (12) hands. See how small?

Now our main camera is the Olympus OM-D EM10-II. It’s a mirrorless camera, smaller than the DSLR but it weights almost the same thing. It’s also cuter. It took me about a month to get around using it properly – or at least, take usable photos. At the moment, it pairs up with the Canon, but using the Canon is easier since we’ve been using it for years. Every time I want to change some adjustment, it takes some time to do it – and we’ve lost loads of great photos because of that.
We’re still learning to use it.
One great thing about it is that it takes videos in Full HD, so they’re way better than the Canon D70 for it.
The other great thing about it is the price. It cost around the half of the price of all other mirrorless cameras. It doesn’t record videos in 4K, but that’s fine with us. Maybe we’ll like to change that in the future, but for now, this one works great.
The stabilization system is amazing, I’ve filmed while walking and was able to watch without feeling sick! It also makes photos in dark places less prone to blur.

Watch the sunset by the Rideau Canal was one of the best things we did in Ottawa. So worth it!

I mean, oh another sunset photo. But yes, and it was so much more beautiful live! – the first sunset taken with the Olympus!

I’m enjoying playing with it, and adjusts are becoming more automatic.

Click here to check the Olympus OM-D EM-10 Mark ll on Amazon!

* We did leave the Canon at home this time to try using only this one during the latest leg of travels. So far, so good!



The 360 camera: Garmin Virb

A tiny planet with Stirling Point (NZ) distance signs on the top and the 6 of us on the bottom. Click to know more about the cameras we take on our trips!

A Tiny Planet style photo taken with the Garmin Virb. Those are us in Stirling Point, NZ!

This one is our first try with a 360 camera. The Garmin Virb a fun camera that combines a lot of great features we like. It’s a 360 camera, but it’s also waterproof (up to 10 meters – 32 feet – without case) and shockproof (except for the lens, which, if you break, they’re exchangeable).

It’s small, lightweight, and easy to carry. We do have to carry a tripod for it because otherwise, we need to put it somewhere and it looks weird.

Editing them is a bit of work, but the results are great and we have lots of fun with it.

Overal, as it is with action cameras, the videos are better than the photos, but the photos of this one have a great quality. I have no complaints, except that it takes a lot of work on them.

To check the latest prices of the Garmin Virb, click here!
A tiny planet photo of Shinjuku Station, in Tokyo, Japan. The round tiny planet in the middle, with buildings growing all over it.

A black & white photo of Shinjuku Station, in Tokyo, at night. Taken with the Garmin Virb!

Then we have the phones.

My The now Angelo’s iPhone 6 is highly used. We take lots of photos with it, make videos, and all that. Some of what is around here came from my phone. I think it’s pretty competent and if you don’t plan on becoming a photographer, a phone with a nice camera is more than enough. It also shoots videos in 4K.

It lacks the sharpness and the overall quality comparing to the Canon and the Olympus, and it’s also not possible to adjust as much as I’d like to (especially when shooting sunsets and stars, or in dark places) but if I wasn’t a photography addict, I’d use only this.

It’s lightweight, it’s a phone, it has Pokémon Go, the internet. Perfect. Almost.


Canon 70D and Olympus OM-D EM10 ll - great cameras!

Look at these 2 cute things… Taken with the iPhone SE.


And Angelo has had a Zenfone 3. He traded his old Huawei for the Zenfone. His old phone’s photos weren’t usable (think iPhone 4 quality) but this new one takes some very good photos. I’d say it’s even better and more adjustable than the iPhone 6. He still uses the Canon more, but every time he sends me a photo from his phone, I’m amazed.

But then the phone started doing things by its own and we contacted Asus but they would only fix it if we sent it to Peru (where we bought it), so we had to dump it. It was literally sending things around without anyone ever touching it.

Well, don’t buy it abroad, if you have the choice.

A tiny planet photo with the 6 of us on the planet, holding on a rail, and the blue waters of Lake Tekapo (NZ) on the bottom. Taken with the Garmin Virb.

A tiny planet photo of us crossing a bridge in Lake Tekapo. Love how accurate the colors of the lake waters are!

Now I have an iPhone SE – smaller and cuter than the 6S. The front camera isn’t good, but the regular camera is just as good as the 6S and it shoots videos in 4K.

*I like the photos, but I see a difference between the ones taken with the camera, so I’ve been using fewer camera photos. The videos are good, but the lack of stabilization kills me.

We use the phones when we see something curious that we’re not gonna use for the blog or to print out later, or when we’re not with or can’t use the cameras. Also, our Instagram and Twitter are phone photos only, so you can check them out there too.

Traveling to Chile is expensive and a bit difficult due to its geography but you can start reading here!

Valparaiso, near Viña del Mar, is one cute town and it makes for a great day trip. Full of street art and hills, take your time trying out empanadas! Photo taken with the iPhone 6!

In Colombia, before we bought the Olympus, we took the Canon for a cleanup and spent 2 days without it. There were times when we really wished we had it, like at night, but overall, we did fine with the phones only.
I don’t believe you NEED a big and heavy camera to take good photos BUT they certainly help.
I’m also not the person who needs the best stuff. A good camera is enough for me, we rarely use all it’s capacity anyway.

To finish it…

If you’re considering buying a camera, both of our cameras are pretty good. It just depends on what you’re gonna use it for. For videos, the new mirrorless cameras shoot in 4K which is better than the Full HD but my D70 doesn’t even shoot in Full HD – and we still love it.

DSLR x Mirrorless, the best for travel

Looking from above, the difference in size is visible

I do recommend you read reviews and go to a store (even if you’re not buying there) to hold it, see if you like it, how it feels in your hand. It makes a difference.

BUT if you’re here for my opinion, the Olympus is the best for travel. It’s a small mirrorless and it fits almost anywhere. Almost fits in a pocket. If you’re not worried about the size, I like the Canon better. I love the photos we take with it.

Tell us what camera you use in the comments!





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