The vast landscapes of Southern Africa can be difficult to photograph in a way that captures their atmosphere and scale. Namibia, especially, is visually spectacular, with dramatic mountain ranges, the second largest river canyon in the world (Fish River Canyon, second only to the Grand Canyon), and the tallest sand dunes found anywhere (nearly 500 metres high).
Seeing the desert flowers in Namaqualand, South Africa, is something we will never forget. For 10 months of the year the earth is dry and bare, yet after just a small amount of rain the parched ground is carpeted in an array of colourful wild flowers. This lasts for just a few weeks each Spring, and some years if the rains fail there will be no flowers at all.
Madagascar is virtually a continent in its own right, with rainforests, dry seasonally leafless forest, savannah grasslands, icy mountain peaks and deserts. It is the fourth largest island in the world (after Greenland, New Guinea and Borneo). At nearly 1000 miles from north to south, and 250 miles east to west, it is a similar size to Texas (or, put another way, the combined sizes of France, Switzerland and Belgium). The huge variety of its climatic regions results from the island's orientation across the prevailing winds from the Indian Ocean, which means that from the tropical rainforest on the east coast progressively less and less rain falls as one moves west, until reaching near-desert in the south west.
The Southern Alps of New Zealand's South Island are achingly beautiful, not least because of the clarity of the air, which at this latitude has not made another landfall since leaving South America!