Taking a road trip can be amazing, especially if you’re doing it with people you love. Whether you’re planning a once-in-a-lifetime experience, an epic drive across the United States or just a quiet weekend getaway, you’re going to want the best camera to capture moments along the way. The best camera can elevate your photos and videos from the vacation with higher quality. It can also help you capture amazing slow-motion footage and, most especially, provide rugged waterproofing so your phone stays safely in your pocket. You don’t need to spend a fortune on high-end cameras either. Often a GoPro can do the trick.
I travel a lot, and I’ll be the first to admit I bring more camera gear than I need to. However, there are only a few things I use all the time, and those are what I recommend here. One of them will probably be all you need for your next road trip.
I don’t have a strong recommendation for this one, other than to say selfie sticks are great (when you’re not in crowds, that is) and you should find one you like. Even I, who has what one friend describes as “freakishly long arms,” find great use in a selfie stick. They let me capture photos and videos that would be impossible any other way, especially with a 360 camera that automatically deletes the stick from the final image or video.
I recommend getting one with tripod-mount screws on both ends, which gives you more options on what you can mount and how you can mount the stick itself. Similarly, make sure you get one that can hold all your cameras and phones.
I find these to be super handy, though depending on how you’re recording, it might not be. It’s a simple Bluetooth remote that lets you control when the camera starts and stops recording along with changing modes, settings, and so on. True, you can use the camera’s app on your phone instead, but I feel like I spend half my life trying to get cameras to connect to their apps, so sometimes a remote is easier. Sometimes the remote won’t connect either. It’s a hassle either way. Oh well.
Tripods and other mounts
One last thing. Tripods and mounts. You probably don’t need a full-size tripod, few people do. A small bendable model can be super handy though, letting you mount the camera to just about anything and get a great shot with you in it. I’ve had good luck with Joby GorillaPods. I have an older version of this one.
Also check out suction-cup and dash mounts. I have a tiny dashboard and tiny windshield, so it was a lot harder to find something that worked. So what I’m using probably won’t work for you. Generally I’d recommend mounting the camera as high as possible, if you can, for a better view.
I’ll end with my favorite, an antenna mount. Unscrew your antenna and install this mount. When paired with a 360 camera, it lets you get an exciting and unique view of your adventure. I got one of these and put a selfie stick on top of it, plus a 360 camera, to get the drone-like footage of me and my car in Grand Teton National Park. How well this works is going to depend on your particular vehicle, however.
Read more: Best Tripod for Photography and Video in 2023
As well as covering TV and other display tech, Geoff does photo tours of cool museums and locations around the world, including nuclear submarines, massive aircraft carriers, medieval castles, epic 10,000-mile road trips, and more. Check out Tech Treks for all his tours and adventures.