Budding photographers did not have to travel far for this year's Insight Guides Travel Photography Competition, run in association with The Independent on Sunday.
Winning photos could come from competitors' back yards, but judges were looking for three outstanding images from each entrant that captured the essence of their chosen destinations.
"The quality of entries was better than ever," said Steven Lawrence, the picture editor at Insight Guides. "Overall winner Nathaniel Gonzales's images of Horse Guards and Buckingham Palace are probably among the most photographed subjects in the city but he was able to place his own stamp on them. His image of Southwark Bridge brought new appreciation of everyday sights."
Mr Gonzales, an A&E nurse from St John's Wood, north London, receives a commission from Insight, worth £3,000, to photograph a forthcoming guidebook, plus an Olympus E-PL3 camera. Second prize, an Olympus XZ-1, went to Simon Morris, of Bridgend, South Wales, for his images from southern China. Lauri Hytti, from Kingston-upon-Thames, took third prize, an Olympus SZ-30MR, for three landscapes that spanned continents. Sam Walker, from Birmingham won the under 18s prize for images of Barmouth Beach and Lake Windermere.
The awards were hosted last Tuesday at Stanfords bookshop, central London, and included an Insight Guides travel photography masterclass. In addition to Mr Lawrence, the judges were Sophie Batterbury, IoS picture editor; and leading photographer Kevin Cummins. Winners and their partners spent the night at London's Corinthia Hotel (corinthia.com/london), where they and the judges enjoyed a celebration dinner. corinthia.com/london.