See The Incredible Winners Of The Smithsonian’s Photo Contest


If an image is worth 1,000 words, hundreds of millions of words were submitted to the Smithsonian’s 13th annual photo contest.

A total of 329,940 photos were submitted to the contest from 231 countries. Winners were selected in eight categories: Natural World, Travel, People, The American Experience, Altered Images, Sustainable Travel, Readers Choice and photos taken with mobile devices. The winner of each category won bragging rights and $500, with the exception of the Sustainable Travel category winner, who won a pair of airline tickets to anywhere in North America, Central America, or the Caribbean. The grand prize winner won $2,500.

The 14th annual contest is currently open to entries and runs from March 22, 2016 to November 30, 2016.

Take a look through the winners of this year’s contest below, and browse through the rest of the finalists on

‘Synchronous Fireflies’

This image of lightning bugs in Great Smokey Mountains National Park won the Altered Images category of the contest.

‘Trucker Chapel’

A truck driver participates in a Bible study session in Lodi, Ohio. This photograph won the American Experience category of the contest.

‘The China Red’

Winner of the mobile category, this image of a woman walking in Beijing was taken with an iPhone 6.

‘A Little Monkey on a Cliff’

A chilly monkey at Jigokudani Monkey Park in Nangano, Japan.

‘Lay Off’

This image of a woman sleeping in Kyoto won the People category of the contest.

‘Orient Express’

A photograph of the photographer’s bull terrier Claire, sitting on an abandoned train was the reader’s choice winner.

‘My Time’

The daughter of a school director at the chalkboard in a school in Mombasa, Kenya. This photo won the Sustainable Travel category of the contest.

‘Women’s Compartment of a Suburban Train’

The women’s compartment of a train in Mumbai. This photo won the Travel category of the contest.