ROAM’s Best Culture Photos of 2020

Ride a vintage train to Northern Russia, and see more diverse shots of families exploring the world.

by Liliia DeCos

Traveling is a great tool to teach our children about diversity that exists in our world, including cuisine, architecture, languages, fashion and sacred places that matter the most in a particular country. So no matter what destination we choose, we pick it for the culture of the place.

So for the Culture category of ROAM’s 2020 Best Family Travel Photo Contest, the judges wanted to pick the photos that demonstrated and celebrated this diversity.

Best Culture Shot

Julia of yulia_and_mark  won Best Culture Shot for The Ruskealsky Express. Together with son Mark, the mom from Moscow ventured to Karelia in the picturesque northern region of Russia. The pair traveled via a retro train called the “Ruskealsky Express” – one of the classic train trips you could undertake with your kids! We can only imagine what landscape Mark is contemplating while his mom snapped this picture.

“This picture reminded me of myself as a child taking a train to visit my grandparents who lived really far away. It was a 12-hour train ride and my only entertainment was to stare out of the window… Those long train rides were my first travels. That’s why this picture touched me so much. Looking at Mark sitting in this vintage train – so typical for Eastern countries – reminded me of my childhood travels that are still so dear to me.”

And since I’m originally from Ukraine, I have to say, “Thank you, Julia!” This shot brought me back to the train rides of my childhood, as well. The rain, the colors, and the composition of the photo are all understated and beautiful.


Action Honorable Mentions

ROAM recognized four more outstanding entries as Honorable Mentions in the Culture category

Mining for Opals by aussie_coddiwomple

Alyce Parker and her son won our hearts with this unique shot from an Opal Mine in South Australia. Discovering what’s unique to the region is the very definition of getting familiar with local culture and history.

Tribute in Belarus by kids.gotravel

Alexandra, a Russian mom behind @kids.gotravel and their culturally powerful shot taken in Brest, Republic of Belarus. Their two children are paying respect to the Unknown Soldier, the monument commemorating the Soviet resistance to Nazi occupation.

On the Boardwalk by fivehesandashe

“What is American seaside culture? This!” says Maryann Jones Thompson, founder and editor of ROAM. “It screams, ‘Summer!’ to every parent and kid I know, regardless of what coast you live on or where you grew up in the U.S.” Felicia Johnson captured the feeling perfectly in a shot of four boys taking over the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk.

Mom in Machu Picchu by bubuzufa

Alexander Evsyukov, wife Anna and two daughters hoofed it to the top of Machu Picchu from their home in Mexico. Even though they were stunned by the famous and sacred place, this shot shows their daughters were only enchanted by each other.


Check out all of 2020’s prize-winning Culture shots in the gallery below (turn mobile devices to “landscape” to view complete photos and caption)  and click here to see the winning photos from 2019.


Best CULTURE Photos

ROAM 2020 Photo Contest CULTURE Winner & Honorable Mentions


Liliia Sokotun deCos  – February 2020

ROAM Contributing Editor   


Originally from Ukraine and now based in Spain, Liliia has traveled literally across the world with her husband Jose and their two young daughters. Follow their intrepid walkabouts at bring_baby_abroad and see Liliia’s amazing photos on Instagram at bring_baby_abroad or on ROAM where she won Best Family Photo of 2019

© ROAM Family Travel 2020 – All rights reserved


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