Brace yourself for a stunning visual journey around the world, courtesy of these panoramic images.
The photographs have picked up accolades in the 2023 Epson International Pano Awards, the world’s largest competition devoted to panoramic photography. This year, the winners were selected from more than 4,000 entries from over 1,100 professional and amateur photographers in 102 countries worldwide.
Lightning bolts striking the coast of Mallorca, dolphins playing off the coast of Western Australia and a lenticular cloud over an active volcano in Chile are some of the subjects captured by the photographers whose work has been recognised in the awards.
The overall champion, however, is Spanish photographer Jose Riquelme for his breathtaking series of pictures captured in Iceland and Namibia. Among them is an image titled ‘Ghost Cave’, which captures Kirkjufell hill in Iceland.
Remarking on ‘Ghost Cave’, the contest organisers say: ‘The combination of Kirkjufell’s natural grandeur and meticulous capture work results in a masterpiece that transports the viewer to a dreamlike world where reality blends with fantasy, creating a unique and exhilarating visual experience.’
Scroll down to see MailOnline Travel’s pick of the winning and commended images – with one of Riquelme’s gold-medal-winning shots at the very bottom…
This striking image shows a lenticular cloud over Villarrica, an active volcano in Chile. Captured by photographer Francisco Negroni, it takes the silver medal in the Open Nature Landscapes category
Zack Stanton captured the light streaming through the trees of Del Norte County, California, in this spellbinding shot, which takes fourth place in the Amateur Nature Landscapes category
Titled ‘The Gathering’, this monochrome shot shows alligators poised along a grassy bank in Florida. Captured by Eric Clay, it’s been awarded joint fourth place in the Open Nature Landscapes category
Marc Marco captures the incredible moment several forks of lightning strike the water in an electric storm off the coast of Sa Foradada in Mallorca, Spain. The image ranks 28th in the top 50 pictures entered into the Amateur Nature Landscapes category
Italian photographer Roberto Moiola snared this shot of a rainbow over Reine Bay in the Lofoten Islands of Norway. It takes joint 19th place in the Open Nature Landscapes category
This striking picture of two bears devouring a fish in Alaska, captured by Dennis Zhang, ranks in the top 50 pictures in the Amateur Nature Landscapes category
Photographer Ran Shen was behind the lens for this spellbinding shot of Shanghai, China. The shot takes 14th place in the Amateur Built Environment category
This playful image shows a pair of dolphins leaping through the waves in Cape Naturaliste, Western Australia. It earns joint 14th place in the Amateur Nature Landscapes category
The underwater military museum of Aqaba in Jordan is the subject of this shot by photographer Martin Broen. It’s been awarded 16th place in the Open Built Environment category
Tsing Ma Bridge in Hong Kong peeks through the clouds in this picture by Michelle Kwock. It takes joint 48th place in the Amateur Built Environment category
Titled ‘Blue Hour’, this picture by David Swindler shows red-roofed huts beside the three peaks of Lavaredo in the Italian Dolomites. It earns joint 37th place in the Open Built Environment category
This eerie image shows the Cedar Pride shipwreck, a former Lebanese freighter that’s been deliberately sunk off the coast of Aqaba, Jordan. Captured by Martin Broen, it’s 11th in the Open Built Environment category
Bolts of purple lightning appear to strike Hong Kong in this dramatic image by Carlo Yuen. It comes 32nd in the Open Built Environment category
Earning 25th place in the Amateur Nature Landscapes category, this dramatic photograph shows Vestrahorn mountain on Stokksnes Beach in Iceland
This stunning picture shows the landscape around San Francisco, with the top of the Golden Gate Bridge emerging from the clouds. Captured by U.S photographer Ray Cao, it ranks 18th in the Amateur Built Environment category
Sliding into joint eighth place in the Amateur Nature Landscapes category is this magical image of the Lofoten Islands in Norway
In this picture, lava slides its way down Fagradalsjfall, an active volcano in Iceland some 25 miles (40km) from Reykjavik. Icelandic photographer Ael Kermarec captured the image, which is joint 14th in the Amateur Nature Landscapes category
This panorama of Kirkjufell hill in Iceland is one of three images submitted by Jose Riquelme, who has been declared the overall Open Photographer of the Year