National Geographic has opened submissions for its annual ‘National Geographic Travel Photographer of the Year’ contest for the year 2017. Photographers from around the world can submit their best travel photographs before 30th June 2017.

This year the grand prize is a 10-day trip (for two) to the Galapagos Islands with National Geographic Expeditions. But that is not it!!…There is more!! For each category three winners (1st, 2nd, and 3rd) will be declared who will be awarded $2500, $750 and $500 prize money respectively.

Some of the most exceptional entries from NG’s People category are given below. Have a look, they are great!!!

Click on images for larger view.

1. Slam Dunk by Brandon Kusher

Brandon Kusher / Nat Geo

A basketball player flies high through the air attempting a slam dunk in which he puts the ball between his legs first!

2. Floating by Dave Valler

Dave Valler / Nat Geo

A traditional floating market boat near Bangkok, complete with plastic containers selling coconut ice cream in a traditional hat to people too busy with their technology to care. This is modern day travel. It is mostly floating around chasing an experience that no longer exists.

3. Tibetan’s Soul Smile by Mattia Passarini

Mattia Passarini / Nat Geo

This monk was running back to his room after the afternoon prayer. I was chasing him trying to get a nice shot, but he kept covering his face. In Chinese i called after him: (pai yi zhang ba) “just one shot!” He looked back and started to laugh..

4. Holy Bath by Yogesh Gupta

Yogesh Gupta / Nat Geo

Yamuna is second most sacred river after Ganga. People took holy bath in as they feel its very sacred. Numbers of Siberian Sea Gull comes here in winter. They give the place a new dimension for few months. Here a local man took his daily bath in Yamuna river.

5. Ramadan Prayers by Pradeep Raja

Pradeep Raja / Nat Geo

6. Lady Havana by  Lauren Breedlove

Lauren Breedlove / Nat Geo

During a recent visit to Cuba, I encountered this bold woman on the street while strolling around Old Havana. Something about her just struck me, like her eyes held a million stories. Not having any cash on me, I borrowed some change from a friend and approached the woman with it, asking to take her photograph. She nodded and posed like a boss, stogie and all.

7. Pigeon Girl by Richard Strozynski

Richard Strozynski / Nat Geo

I was taking pictures of one of the temple areas in Kathmandu, when this little girl casually strolled through a flock of pigeons.

8. Tide Fighter by Jérôme Gence

Jérôme Gence / Nat Geo

A young boy playing in the river Niger by fighting the tide helped by a rope.

9. A Popular Rendezvous Spot in Tokyo by Hiro Kurashina

Hiro Kurashina / Nat Geo

Two young ladies and two men stand waiting on the side of a decommissioned train that used to carry thousands of commuters and other passengers daily between Shibuya and Sakuragicho. The decommissioned train now serves as a Tourist Information Center just outside the Shibuya train station in Tokyo. The spot has also become a favorite rendezvous point for lovers and friends to meet.

10. Lets Go Back to Play Holi by Miguel Salas

Miguel Salas / Nat Geo

Father and sons where getting ready to leave their house again to keep celebrating Holi at the small town of Barsana, India.

11. Old and Young by Hua Zhu

Hua Zhu / Nat Geo

This photo was taken in a small village in Wuyuan, China. It estimates that there are about 250 million countryside people living in the big cities. Many young people are making money in the cities, leaving their parents and kids at their hometown.

12. The Lone Ranger by Chris Schmid

Chris Schmid / Nat Geo

The gauchos of South American’s pampas are the stuff of legend. Now considered national symbols in Argentina and Uruguay, these solitary horsemen and women have herded cattle through the lowland plains for centuries.