The 70 finalists for the 14th Annual Smithsonian Photo Contest have recently been announced, and as you're about to see from this stunning selection, the judges are going to have a very difficult time picking a winner.
The competition received 48,000 submissions from photographers across 146 countries and territories, and voting is now open for the Reader's Choice winner. The voting will be closed on March 27, and the winner will be revealed alongside the Grand Prize and category winners the following day. We have chosen 20 of our favorite photos and we think you'll agree that they're all pretty awe-inspiring.
After you have feasted your eyes upon these stunning photos, head over here to vote for your favorite.
Click on images to enlarge
1. Winter is Coming, Altered Images Finalist
2. Turtle-Back Ride, Natural World Finalist
3. Flying, Natural World Finalist
4. Dream, Natural World Finalist
5. Cormorant Fisherman, People Finalist
6. Take Me Away, Deer! Travel Finalist
7. Lighting the Old Man, Travel Finalist
8. Firewalking, Travel Finalist
9. Sustainable Future, Sustainable Travel Finalist
10. Keel-Billed Toucan, Sustainable Travel Finalist
11. Splash, Natural World Finalist
12. The Bear Odd Couple, Altered Images Finalist
13. Morning Call, Travel Finalist
14. Ramadan Prayers, Travel Finalist
15. Yellow-Flecked Sipo, Natural World Finalist
16. TV School, People Finalist
17. Brown-Eyed Beauty, Sustainable Travel Finalist
18. Golden Monkey Surveying the Area, Sustainable Travel Finalist
19. Step by Step, People Finalist
20. Prom Night, The American Experience Finalist