5 Reasons I Love Ghost Towns For Travel Photos

Photo By Richard Rosales

Some of my favorite places to take photos when I travel are ghost towns. These towns have so much to offer you when you have time to explore the area. It is always fun to see towns that are trapped in time and gives you a different perspective on how you view it. When you do some research, these become great places to capture images that will make the viewer stop and think about your image. I love them because some of them just creep me out, and it makes for a fun time finding things to shoot. Always be aware of your surroundings when you shoot in ghost towns because you don’t want to get hurt from unsafe structures.


A lot of these ghost towns have a fantastic history that can really drive how you approach taking photos of that town. When you can research the ghost town and see what it was like back in its hay day, you can come up with a great game plan on how to shoot that location. Most ghost towns have a history that you may not expect, and it is always fascinating to me to find out why a town became a ghost town. When they go from the hustle and bustle to deserted, have you ever just wondered why? Some facts you might not expect, and it helps you approach that town in a great way to capture its mystic.

Run Down

When you can take photos of areas that are not at their peak, you can find beauty in what it once was. This creates images that you might not have expected and lets you present some fascinating photos. When you approach the run down in the right way, you can make great use of the area around. Rundown doesn’t mean ugly, and it doesn’t mean that you can’t capture some truly amazing images. So next time you head over to a ghost town, approach the distressed atmosphere with a new set of eyes.


With distressed areas, you can really take some artistic shots because it allows you to see how the past lived. It also allows you to frame and compose shots that will make the viewer invoke an emotion about the area. When you can invoke a feeling, you are creating great art. I know that is how I try to approach a ghost town when I shoot it. Although there are a great many that shoot way better photos then I do, it is a great way to approach the area. It also helps because you can see old architecture that makes for some great photos.


It may inspire in a good or bad way, but most ghost towns inspire you in some way, and that is always a good thing. I know that when I am inspired, I can take better photos and get better perspectives out of my work. So, when you take everything into account, you are really able to get the most out of your work. So, when you arrive at the ghost town that you want to shoot, just take it in for a moment and get inspired. Let the town direct you where to go and have fun shooting.


It is always fun to see how life was like before it turned into what it is now. Most towns still have a little bit of a haunted vibe when you go and shoot. At least this is true with the abandoned ghost towns. You can almost feel what it was like when the town was at its peak. Walking down old streets that are no longer in use gives you an eerie vibe that makes your photos more haunting in nature. I think this really lends to how creative you can get with the shots that you take. Especially when you walk in on something and just wonder how it got that way.

Ghost towns are just plain fun, and I love to find them and shoot in them. I will be honest; some are better than others, but they all have unique qualities that make them fun to see. Next time you are on the road, check out a ghost town or two and see how the other half lived. I also suggest that you stop and visit one that is less popular because those are always the most fun to explore and learn about. When you do get out there take as many photos that you can and try to make them from a unique perspective.

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