Selected from more than 17,000 entries, an underwater photograph of divers swimming near a humpback whale taken by Anuar Patjane Floriuk of Puebla, Mexico, has won the 2015 National Geographic Traveler Photo Contest grand prize. Shot near Roca Partida, an island off the western coast of Mexico, the winning photo is titled “Whale Whisperer.”
This year’s contest received more than 17,000 entries from photographers around the world. There were four categories: Travel Portraits, Outdoor Scenes, Sense of Place and Spontaneous Moments. Judging consisted of two rounds of evaluation based on creativity and photographic quality.
“The photo wasn’t planned,” Floriuk said. “I was taking photos near the head of the whale, and all of a sudden she began to swim toward the rest of the diving team. The divers gave the whale and her calf space, and I just clicked at the moment when the flow and composition seemed right.”
Faisal Azim of Chittagong, Bangladesh, placed second for his photo “Gravel Workmen.”
The third-place photo, “Camel Ardah,” was shot by Ahmed Al Toqi of Muscat, Oman.
You can watch the whales in Mexico with your own eyes during our event tour.