Meet Florian Decaux – ROAM’s Grand Prize Photographer

The French dad who calls Chicago home stunned judges with his shots from around the world.

By Liliia DeCos

Despite the pandemic, ROAM’s 2021 Family Travel Photo Contest received hundreds of entries from all over the world. But from the moment we saw his shots, we knew Florian Decaux of goflo_travel would be the Grand Prize winner. In fact, the hardest part for the judges was choosing the winning shot from his entries.

Even though ROAM never sets technical qualities of the pictures as a priority, Florian’s entries caught our eye: Perfect light, colors, composition, dynamic—and you feel the story behind each and every shot. His black-and-white shots were especially incredible.

Florian’s winning photo was taken on The Door Trail in the Badlands National Park, South Dakota, during their summer vacation.

“Because of the Covid pandemic, we were not really expecting a lot from our 2020 trip but we were impressed—the Badlands are amazing! Our days were spent hiking and playing with prairie dogs and at night, we watched the stars and ate s’mores.

The ‘Door Trail’ was the first one we hiked when we arrived. It leads through a break in the Badlands wall known as ‘the Door’ and to a beautiful view of the Badlands. And that’s exactly where this winning shot was taken.”

During the same trip we went to the Black Hills and Sylvan Lake. It was a totally different type of landscape but we were also mesmerized by the natural beauty there. On top of that, we were able to discuss American history with our kids at Mont Rushmore and they were also really excited to see where ‘Dances with Wolves’ was filmed.”

Florian, his wife, Claire, and 4 kids, are originally from France but have lived in Chicago since 2014. They’ve been traveling with their kids since they were young and Florian admits it was quite a challenge to get around with young children, but it was so worth it. “Even when our youngest was two we hiked 18 km in Death Valley!”

The Decaux family travels a lot—at least five times per year. Their recent destinations include Mexico, the Bahamas, Costa Rica, Jamaica, Hawaii, France (of course, 😀 ), and Canada.

But Florian says their favorite destinations are America’s national parks.

“We love visiting National Parks. The kids always ask for the Junior Ranger books and answer all the questions to get the badge at each one. At the end of the day, we are really tired but it is a good tired.”

In Florian’s family everybody plays a part when it comes to traveling. Mom Claire is the master trip planner, and the kids help picking the activities. That leaves Florian to be  responsible for memory conservation.

“I am passionate about photography and videography. I love to capture our memories through my pictures and my videos. I started photography 12 years ago when my son was born. I bought my first camera and improved, year after year.”

Video came quickly after, I like to mix both, they bring different emotions. I also love technology. One of my best purchases during the last year is my drone => It gives a different angle and perspective in some of my photography’s and videos. I started posting my videos on YouTube at GoFlo_Travel.  At first, the channel was my attempt at keeping all our videos in one place. Then I started sharing our channel with our family and friends. Now we have almost 4,000 people following our adventures!

The kids often ask to watch our videos together. They love to see themselves and what they did when they were younger. And every time they ask different questions about the place we’ve been—even questions they have never asked before, which is really interesting. These videos will be even more interesting for us all to watch in 10 or 20 years!”

So true! What an amazing way to preserve memories! Thank you once again, Florian, for sharing your amazing memories with us, and congratulations!

Liliia deCos  – April 2021

ROAM Executive 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 on ROAM and on 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 2021 – All rights reserved


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